Here’s what the Times of India wrote on the recently-released Francis Rodrigues compiled/authored The Greatest Konkani Song Hits book:
Original hits of the last 50 years are available, in Konkani, besides some popular Portuguese and Swahili songs too, have been compiled by non resident Goans from Toronto, Canada, Francis Rodrigues. Unavailable music of the likes of Chris Perry, Frank Fernand, M Boyer, Alfred Rose and others is now available – transcribed note-for-note.
The songs include Adeus Korchea Vellar’, Lisboa’, Kampala’, Sacrament Zoddlo’, Mollbailo Dou’, Malaika,’ Maria Isabel,’ Encosta Tua Cabecinha’, Cecilia’, Mogacho Divo’, Proud to be a Goan’, and others.
Besides the lyrics, the compiler has provided the chords for the songs. Not only have these been annotated to the music, but intricate chord-diagrams have been supplied for each song, making it easy for the musician.
According to Rodrigues, himself a musician and a lawyer by profession, the songs can now also be accompanied by harmonic instruments without sheet-music like the piano, accordion, keyboard and guitar. For bands and musical groups worldwide, separate music in tablature form for the guitar have been included.
Besides maintaining the originality and authenticity of the lyrics, there are cross-references from myriad sources, conveying the composer’s intentions and the background of each composition.
“Each song has not only been accurately translated, but the translations have been set to verse/rhymed. Not only can the songs be poetically resung in English, but can bring the original music to the doorsteps of the world,” says Rodrigues.
The book also includes programme notes, original and detailed historical liner-notes and anecdotes. “It has been painstakingly cross-checked and researched from numerous sources,” said Rodrigues.
Other than the book, which can come handy to any music lover, a free DVD is a priceless bonus. “All the songs have been filmed and performed by Canadian jazz pianist Victor Martins. So that can help anyone to observe closely how to perform the music.”
Greatest Konkani Song Hits (Vol I)’ was released on Sunday by NRI commissioner Eduardo Faleiro, who lauded the efforts put in by Rodrigues for the book, which he said will help Konkani reach every nook and corner of the world.
Konkani writer Tomazinho Cardozo said the book will boost the language across the globe and it will help keep alive traditional Konkani culture among Goans scattered worldwide. The book is being released worldwide for World Goa Day on 20 August.