The Cult Fado singer Amália Rodrigues
Amália Rodrigues, with her full name Amália da Piedade Rebordão Rodrigues, was born in Lisbon when her parents, Lucinda da Piedade Rebordão and Albertino de Jesus Rodrigues, were visiting their maternal grandparents. The birth certificate shows the date of July 23, 1920, however, the artist adopted the 1st of July as her birthday throughout her life because there are some doubts about the exact day. He dropped out of school after completing primary education to help support his family. She was apprenticed as a seamstress, embroiderer and worker in a chocolate and candy factory. From a very early age, he showed a taste for singing, having in 1939, his professional debut. It quickly became a success, being headliner in several spaces. From the beginning of the 1950s, Amália Rodrigues toured nationally but especially internationally. The first concert abroad took place in 1943, at a party of the Portuguese Ambassador in Madrid, Dr. Pedro Teotónio Pereira. Known worldwide for her Fado, Amália Rodrigues is considered one of the greatest ambassadors of Portugal. Among his most successful fados are " O fado do jealousy ", " Strange way of life", "People who wash in the river", "Wash in the river, wash", "Tear", "Ai, Mouraria", "Portuguese Fado", "Black boat", "Portuguese house", "I'll give a drink to pain", "Meia-Noite", "Casa da Mariquinhas", "Uma guitar", "My mistakes" and "Foi Deus" . Also in the seventh art, the fado singer left her mark in the film " Capes Negras" (1946) by Armando de Miranda. After her departure from the stage, in 1994, the fado singer continued to be the guest of honor at numerous cultural events, namely during the exhibition of Popular Marches on Santo António's day, in Lisbon. Discover in this article seven little-known facts about one of the unavoidable figures in the history of Fado.
1. «Since there is death, immediately life is absurd. I always thought that way». - Amalia Rodrigues
The Portuguese fado singer mentioned in her biography, written in collaboration with Vítor Pavão dos Santos, that she tried to commit suicide several times. It is known that one of the attempts was due to an affair with Francisco da Cruz and the other due to the discovery of a tumor.
2. The homosexual community had her as an icon.
Amália Rodrigues never discriminated against people due to her orientations. Pedro Homem de Mello, José Carlos Ary dos Santos and José Manuel Osório were homosexuals and great friends of the artist. António Variações loved Amália Rodrigues and Osório when he discovered he was HIV positive, he had the singer's support. Júlio Coutinho, also known as Lola, a transvestite, asked Amália for a dress, and she kindly gave it to him, with a piece of advice: «Whenever you're composed with the character Amália, come to the dancefloor and then go to the dressing room. Please don't make room ».
3. Belenenses fan
Because the brothers are from Carcavelinhos, the singer was a fan of Belenenses, " to irritate my brothers ". She sympathized with Benfica, however she was forced by PIDE agents to attend Sporting's birthday party, on July 1, 1958.
«I remember that I went downstairs from my room crying and saying: “There is no right to do this to a person”» - Amália Rodrigues
4. internationally known
From the 1950s onwards, he traveled non-stop on a tour of Africa and the Americas. In Paris, she became famous thanks to the film “ Os Amantes do Tejo ”. He crossed paths with various personalities such as Anthony Quinn, Juliette Gréco, Frank Sinatra, Ava Gardner, King Humberto II of Italy, Chico Buarque, Roberto Carlos and Ernest Hemingway.
" Os Amantes do Tejo" poster
5. I wasn't a Madonna fan.
At a time when the singer Madonna was internationally famous, the Portuguese fado singer stated in an interview with Expresso: « I'm not old enough for her music. And much less for your nature. I was raised by a grandmother who would die if she saw what Madonna does on stage ».
6. Amália cover of Billboard Magazine
In 1952, the song " Coimbra " reached the second position on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, by the American magazine Billboard. He made his debut in New York, in September of the same year, on the stage of “ La Vie en Rose ”. Still in the United States of America, in 1953, he sang for the first time on television on NBC. In May 1954, he made the cover of Billboard magazine, for his album “ Amália in Fado & Flamenco ” reached the first position among the best sellers in the United States of America.
Amália Rodrigues - “ Amália in Fado & Flamenco ”
7. Over 30 million copies sold
Until his death in October 1999, 170 albums had been released under his name in 30 countries, selling more than 30 million copies. Amália Rodrigues' last two projects were the 1997 album " Segredo ", which brought together unpublished recordings made between 1965 and 1975, and the poetry book " Versos ''.