Dance Party Friday: The Samba

2014-06-27T07:30:00Z Dance Party Friday: The SambaArizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
June 27, 2014 7:30 am  • 

With the men of the 2014 FIFA World Cup kicking, running and flopping in Brazil, the samba comes to mind — when not watching the soccer world championship, of course. (Despite team USA's disappointing loss to Germany Thursday, we're is still in the tourney. So, dancing the samba is still appropriate.)

The sexy samba, a dance and musical genre that got its start Bahia, Brazil, has roots in Africa. The dance is a symbol of Brazil and part of its national identity. Intrinsic to the Brazilian Carnival, the Samba has distinct, lively rhythms. Cultural elements like foods and visual arts are all associated with this iconic dance.

The samba appears up in popular-in-the-United States song lyrics, like "The Girl From Ipanema" —

"Tall and tan and young and lovely, the girl from Ipanema goes walking

"And when she passes, each one she passes goes - ah

"When she walks, she's like a samba that swings so cool and sways so gentle

"That when she passes, each one she passes goes – ooh"

And "One Note Samba" —

'This is just a little samba

"Built upon a single note

"Other notes are bound to follow

"But the root is still that note"

But let’s get dancing: The samba is a 2/4 dance with three steps to every bar. Sounds a little confusing, so we’ve posted a how-to videos and what the samba looks like when the pros dance.

Grab your partner and start dancing.

If you're in a more mellow mood, you can also listen to "The Girl From Ipanema" that played on U.S. radios in 1964 and Frank Sinatra's "One Note Samba.

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