Don’t forget to enter by 11:59 p.m. today for a random drawing to win tickets to see the fantastic Brazilian psych-rock band Os Mutantes‘ only US appearance this year at (le) poisson rouge in Manhattan next Tuesday, Sept. 15.
Enter by email to win a pair of tickets. Go here to create the email entry automatically, or do it the old-school way by typing the subject line “Os Mutantes tickets” into an email addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org. (Your information will NOT BE SHARED with anyone other than the ticket folks at LPR, who need it to verify the winner’s identity.) Deadline for entries is 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on Sept. 9, 2015. The winner will be chosen at random and notified on Sept. 10.
Os Mutantes 1968: Arnaldo Baptista, Rita Lee, and Sérgio Dias Baptista.
One Will You Miss Me When I’m Gone? reader has a treat in store: A free pair of tickets to see Brazilian psychedelic rock band Os Mutantes at Manhattan’s (le) poisson rouge.
It’s the band’s only U.S. date this year, and thanks to the wonderful folks at LPR, I have a pair to give away. Read through to the jump to learn how to enter.
Os Mutantes has been a favorite of mine for some years, although I knew nothing about the band in its heyday. Email and the Internet have helped me learn a lot about what was going elsewhere in the world while I was growing up hearing the Beatles on the radio.
Brothers Arnaldo Baptista and Sérgio Baptista Dias joined forces in 1966 with singer Rita Lee to form a band that became a key part of the wildly experimental Tropicália movement in their homeland.
Here’s Os Mutantes’ debut album from 1968. It still sounds remarkable after all these years.
We’re definitely old enough to have experienced Brazilian rock band Os Mutantes in its first incarnation in the mid-Sixties.
But timing isn’t really everything.
We grew up in a household where listening to rock ‘n roll (aka The Devil’s Music) was, shall we say, not encouraged. And we lived in a community outside of Philadelphia where conformity ruled. And being 11, or so when Os Mutantes started making music, we were at a tender age where that type of pressure was pretty effective in keeping us in line.
Sérgio Dias shows off his sitar skills.
On top of everything else, Brazil might as well have been the other side of the moon.
So, all in all, it’s no surprise that we didn’t know anything at all about Os Mutantes — founded by brothers Arnaldo Baptista on bass, keyboards and vocals and Sérgio Dias Baptista on guitar and vocals — until the psychedelic band started its Second Act when it reunited in 2006.
We’re sorry we missed the band’s First Act, but we were hardly alone among American music fans. And we’re thrilled we didn’t miss the Second Act.
Singer Esmeria Bulgari with Sérgio Dias of Os Mutantes at Maxwell’s.
You have less than a week to buy your weekend passes to this great festival before the price goes up
Will You Miss Me When I’m Gone? has told you before, and is taking this opportunity to tell you again: Solid Sound, Wilco’s music and arts festival at MASS MoCA is one of the best music festivals ever. We’ve attended the first two editions and have no intention of missing V3 this year — on June 21-23 at the museum in North Adams, Mass.
Sergio Diás and Bia Mendes leading Os Mutantes through a rollicking set at NYC's Webster Hall. (Photos copyright 2009, Steven P. Marsh)
The Will You Miss Me When I’m Gone? team has no real excuse for missing out on the original incarnation of Os Mutantes— except for the fact that the whole team (that would be me) never went to Brazil, was kept in a cage for most of the Sixties and was only allowed to listen to baseball games on they tiny transistor radio his grandmother gave to him after extracting a promise that he wouldn’t use it to listen to “the devil’s music.”
So it was a revelation when the legendary psychedelic band reunited in 2006 (after a hiatus that started in 1978) and I started listening to the original recordings. The sound was of its time, but not dated, spectacularly playful and inventive. And the reunited band — which at that time included both founding brothers Sergio Diás and Arnaldo Baptista — did not disappoint when I saw them at the Rose Theater at Jazz at Lincoln Center in 2007.
That show was full of pomp and circumstance in a formal theater. The audience was seated, and stayed that way pretty much to the end. Os Mutantes is a rock band, and I didn’t feel I got the full impact sitting through that show, no matter how strong it was musically.
So I was thrilled to see Os Mutantes (with a new lineup, as Arnaldo has left the band and the awesome and earthy Bia Mendes has stepped in as the female singer, replacing Zélia Duncan, a somewhat chillier vocalist who during the early part of the reunion replaced original singer Rita Lee) booked at Webster Hall last Thursday. Although it’s not my favorite place to see a show, at least it was a real rock club, which somehow seemed more fitting for such a rockin’ band.
We were not disappointed. Sergio — the proud 58-year-old who rocked out like he was half that age — and company put on a fantastic show.
For more photos of Os Mutantes, Brooklyn-based opener DeLeon, and an Os Mutantes video, click through to the jump. Continue reading →