SotD, Mix CD Edition: Jorge Ben, “Ponta de Lança Africano (Umbabarauma)”

On Wednesday evening, I dug out some “mix CDs” I burned sometime in 2002; I played a couple of them in my office on Thursday. “A Shot in the Arm” was track 4 on one of them. I enjoyed hearing this disk again so much that I’m thinking I’ll feature tunes from it (and the other CDs) maybe a couple times of week as Songs of the Day in the coming months.

This was that disk’s opener.  It’s from Beleza Tropical, the first Brazil Classics compilation that David Byrne assembled in the early 90s (Forro, the third in the series, is really, really good). I’d found the vinyl for Beleza in a cutout bin a few years later and got it out for a few spins on the turntable sometime in the first quarter of 99. This Jorge Ben song, about an African soccer player, stood out. Then, just a week or so after I started playing it, Intel began featuring the song in an ad for its new line of chips during that spring’s March Madness.  I was really struck by the coincidence of catching a song from two disparate sources in such a short time span almost a quarter century after it was first recorded.

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