I first heard of Dona Zefinha (pronounced Zeh-FEEN-ya) about a year ago. I asked an employee at a CD shop if he sold any CDs of bands from Ceará that mixed forró (and other kinds of traditional northeastern music) with rock. He mentioned four groups that were part of a short-lived movement called Movimento Cabaçal that started in 2001: Dona Zefinha, Dr. Raiz, Jumenta Parida, and SoulZé. But he told me I’d only find the CDs downtown in a little area known as the Galeria do Rock. So I went to a crowded shopping area in the centro where I entered a narrow shopping mall that sold religious books and religious-themed products. (Pretty much all the stores had the word “gospel” in their name. Gospel Bookstore. Gospel Paper Supplies. Gospel Optometry.) And between the first and second bookstore was an inconspicuous dark entryway. So I braved the corridor and ascended the cement staircase. On the second, third, and fourth floors, I found tattoo parlors, skate shops, and record stores selling obscure Brazilian heavy metal and punk albums with employees wearing studded leather wrist bands and nose piercings. I went into every record shop and asked about these four bands. In the last store on the top floor, I was told to return to the first floor where I’d find a CD shop hidden at the end of the gospel supply stores. It was there that I bought Dona Zefinha’s album from 2007, Zefinha Vai a Feira.
Here’s a t-shirt I bought in the Galeria do Rock. It might explain why none of the stores upstairs had the Dona Zefinha CD.
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