Los Indios Tabajaras Biography

Musiperi and Herundy (Ceara, Brazil) were sons of a Tabajaras Indian chieftain of an isolated jungle tribe. The story circulated by their publicist stated that they found guitars mislaid by European explorers, and taught themselves to play. Next, they travelled to Rio de Janiero to perform South American folk in the city’s clubland where they were noticed by an agent who polished both their act and cultural education. As ‘Natalicio and Antenor Lima’, they toured other South American regions including Mexico before a trip to Europe where they proved particularly popular in Italy and Spain. It was, therefore, hardly surprising that, as Los Indios Tabajaras, they began recording principally for the Latin market in 1943. After 20 years, however, their instrumental revival of Jimmy Dorsey’s ‘Maria Elena’ - dedicated to the wife of a Mexican president - was issued in the USA on RCA Records where, with no obvious precedent, it was a huge hit. In Britain and Australia too, it reached the Top 10, but its ear-catching sound was regarded as a one-off novelty and the duo made no further impact on charts in English-speaking territories.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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