Monday, December 19, 2011


Cesária Évora, who brought the music of the tiny Cape Verde islands off Senegal to a worldwide audience, died on Saturday in Mindelo, on São Vicente, her native island in Cape Verde. She was famous for bringing the melancholy morna style, which is full of what is known in Portuguese as saudade, to the world.

Saudade is a word that is impossible to translate adequately. It describes a deep emotional state of nostalgic longing for something or someone that was held dearly but is now lost. The feeling, somehow, is also very sweet because it recalls something truly loved that survives in the heart -- a loss that lives on and brings a guiding light. The world now says, "saudades" and knows that the light of Cesária Évora will live on.

More at...
Al Jazeera newscast

Cesária Évora web site

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