Kalunga N'Golo

Houston, Texas

Capoeira Songs

Here are some songs and respective translations for practice. I will add a "translation notes" section behind certain songs if I believe some words require more explanation or context.
More songs will be added to this page on a weekly basis so keep checking back for more.
Please help us keep this page correct and updated by sending in your corrections, feedback, questions and song requests.

Index - Ladainhas

Liberdade (Mestre Moraes)

Quer comprar engenho novo
Só porquê tu tem dinheiro
Nunca mais ninguém me joga
Dentro de navio negreiro

Atravessei a kalunga (bis)
Em direção do viver
Conheci a malandragem
Antes de você nascer

Quem olha de cá da terra (bis)
Pensa que o céu é azul
Cantoria lá na mata
Vem lá do maracatu
Malungo deixou saudade
Fugiu lá pro Curuzú

You want to buy a new mill/plantation
Just because you have money
Never again will anyone throw me
Inside a slave ship

I crossed the kalunga (x2)
In the direction of living
I met street smarts
Before you were born

Whoever looks from here on the ground (x2)
Thinks the sky is blue
The singing (there) in the forest
Comes (there) from the maracatu
Shipmate/Comrade left me longing
Ran away to Curuzú

Translation Notes: Liberdade (Mestre Moraes)

Engenho (mill/plantation):
The word engenho usually referred just to the mill in a sugar plantation but I believe that because Brazil had such a strong focus on sugar production it became common to use the word engenho to refer to any colonial-era slave-based plantation.

Conheci a ... antes de você nascer (I met... before you were born):
It's pretty clear but I just wanted to add a small note about it to make sure since it sounds a bit off to me in English. This is just a common expression where we poke fun at someone by saying that we already knew something before they were even born.

Malandragem (street smarts):
I think everyone that has been in capoeira for a bit knows what we mean when we say malandragem, but it is still tough to translate properly. In this case, I translated as street smarts, but it can also mean different things: Malandro could be translated as rogue, hustler, scoundrel, lazy, con man, and many other things, usually in a negative connotation.

When we talk about malandro/malandragem in capoeira, I believe we are usually referring to someone's ability to deal with adversity with trickery/deception in a positive light: referring to flexibility, wisdom and street smarts.

Malungo (shipmate/comrade):
Usually meaning comrade as someone of the same country/village/tribe/ethnicity but also used as shipmate as in slaves brought in same ship:

"A critical part of the initiation of any sort of collective identity for African-born slaves began with relationships formed on slave ships crossing the middle passage. Shipmates called each other malungos, and this relationship was considered as important and valuable as the relationship with their wives and children. Malungos were often ethnically related as well, for slaves shipped on the same boat were usually from similar geographical regions of Africa." (Nishida, Mieko. Slavery and Identity: Ethnicity, Gender, and Race in Salvador, Brazil, 1808-1888. Bloomington: Indiana UP, 2003. Print)

A Canoa Virou, Marinheiro

A canoa virou, marinheiro
No fundo do mar tem dinheiro
A canoa virou, marinheiro
No fundo do mar tem segredo
A canoa virou, marinheiro
No fundo do mar tem malícia
A canoa virou, marinheiro
No fundo do mar tem capoeira
A canoa virou, marinheiro
Mas se virou, deixa virar
A canoa virou, marinheiro
Está lá, no fundo do mar
A canoa virou, marinheiro

The canoe flipped, sailor
In the bottom of the sea there is money
The canoe flipped, sailor
In the bottom of the sea there are secrets
The canoe flipped, sailor
In the bottom of the sea there is trickery
The canoe flipped, sailor
In the bottom of the sea there is capoeira
The canoe flipped, sailor
But if it flipped, let it flip
The canoe flipped, sailor
There it is, in the bottom of the sea
The canoe flipped, sailor

É Coisa de Angoleiro (CM Barata)

É coisa de angoleiro, é coisa de angoleiro
É coisa de angoleiro, é coisa de angoleiro
(parte principal, repetida várias vezes)

Andar com dobrão no bolso
É coisa de angoleiro
Um andar malandreado
É coisa de angoleiro
Um berimbau bem tocado
É coisa de angoleiro
Uma bateria bem afinada
É coisa de angoleiro
Uma navalha no bolso
É coisa de angoleiro
Um sorriso no rosto
É coisa de angoleiro
Um pandeiro bem tocado
É coisa de angoleiro
Um coral bem ritmado
É coisa de angoleiro

It's an angoleiro thing
It's an angoleiro thing
(main part, repeated several times)

Walking with a doubloon in the pocket
It's an angoleiro thing
Walking with trickery
It's an angoleiro thing
A well-played berimbau
It's an angoleiro thing
A well-tuned drum line
It's an angoleiro thing
A razor in the pocket
It's an angoleiro thing
A smile in the face
It's an angoleiro thing
A well-played tambourine
It's an angoleiro thing
A well-paced chorus
It's an angoleiro thing

Na Beira do Mar (Aprendi a Jogar)

Na beira do mar
É na beira do mar
Aprendi a jogar capoeira de Angola
Na beira do mar

Na beira do mar
É na beira do mar
Aprendi a jogar capoeira de Angola
Na beira do mar


Vou m'embora que é de noite
tão cedo não venho cá
Se iá-iá quiser me ver
Bote seu navio no mar

(Coro)

É verdade meu amigo
Escute o que eu vou falar
Quem é dono não ciúma
Quem não é quer ciumar

At the edge of the sea
It's at the edge of the sea
I learned to play capoeira from Angola
At the edge of the sea

At the edge of the sea
It's at the edge of the sea
I learned to play capoeira from Angola
At the edge of the sea


I'm leaving because it's night
So soon I won't come here
If iá-iá would like to see me
Put your ship in the sea

(Chorus)

It is true my friend
Hear what I am going to say
He who is the owner, does not get jealous
He who is not, wants to (get jealous)

Schedule

Saturday, Sep 23 at 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Sunday, Sep 24 at 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Wednesday, Sep 27 at 7:30 PM - 9:00 PM
Saturday, Sep 30 at 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Songbook

Kalunga N'golo's Songbook

(Last update: 09/22/10)

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