W Bush’s Contribution to Culture

The one thing George W. Bush did to help improve non-US countries is to promote the love of their own culture through a common disapproval for American politics, and hence all things Americana.

Picture this: it is 2003, music piracy is picking up and record studios are sticking to what sells, therefore spewing out commercial crap (Britney and Black Eye Peas). Brazilians are cruising on what was produced a few years back, but then, BAM!, the US becomes a political bully, beating up Iraq and Muslims. Anti-americana comes back full force.
What is a person to do? Buy bubblegum music exports, or, hey, blow the dust off those national LPs and dig for oldies? Sure enough, within a few months, circa mid 2003, listening to MPB (brazilian music from the 60s and 70s) was triply hip and emotional because: 1) it was/is great music, brilliantly composed and poetic; 2) it’s a political statement against Uncle Sam culture and 3) it’s a retro-sound refreshingly new to young Brazilians. And what´s more, a topic for you to reminisce with your parents.

Names like Chico Buarque, Raul Seixas, Jorge Benjor, Tim Maia, Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil and others became cool again, specially amongst the 20 somethings. Soon samba and bossa nova, the natural step in retro-digging, were also rediscovered. By 2009, carnival in Rio had once again become the place to be in Brazil, (It had been the place NOT-to-be for the previous dozen years).

Ever since, samba and MPB have been revitalized and are now thriving styles, desired throughout Brazil.

That’s my Bush!