Singer and songwriter Nilze Benedicto, after a powerful dive into samba, celebrates the work and cultural impact of two of rock’s greatest icons: Rita Lee and Tina Turner. The release of the clip that celebrates this meeting of trajectories – of the honorees and of Nilze, whose life in music encompasses the stage, the backstage and art as a form of education.
Inspiration from female artists is a constant in Nilze’s work. This time, the influence was also from friend and poet Renata Correa, who appeared in Benedicto’s thoughts along with part of the lyrics of “Filha do Vento” and its melody.
Nilze Benedicto is a multifaceted figure on the Brazilian cultural scene with a career that covers several areas. With a degree in Biological Sciences and a postgraduate degree in environmental management, Nilze also left her mark in education. For 25 years, she dedicated herself to the pedagogical field, participating in congresses and assuming the role of general coordinator of Sciences in the municipality of Itaboraí, in Rio de Janeiro.
However, Nilze Benedicto is not limited to the classroom. His artistic expressiveness is revealed through music, poetry and thunder. She is a renowned samba singer, singer, composer and troubadour, with her trovas being highlighted not only in Brazil, but also internationally, in Japan and Uruguay. Her ability to create verses and melodies is a manifestation of Brazil’s cultural richness.
In addition to her contributions in the field of education and art, Nilze also played an important role in the production of musical events, always combining African influence in Brazilian music, highlighting the power and importance of samba women and their musical instruments.
With “Filha do Vento”, Nilze Benedicto turns to the guitar, so associated with her honorees, to create a powerful song about female identity and power. The track is now available on all major music platforms, and the clip is on his YouTube channel.
“Daughter of the Wind” is a tribute to both Rita Lee and Tina Turner. How did these two artists influence your music and what is their importance in your musical career?
Many know me and know that I’m a samba fan, but I sing everything that crosses me or represents me. Both Rita and Tina were women who were always ahead of their time, empowered, fearless, they had their opinions and I wanted to bring that to the video “Filha Do Vento”.
The song has a special connection with Oyá, a deity associated with the wind. How did this spirituality and cultural connection affect your musical and artistic approach in “Filha do Vento”?
When this composition came to me I didn’t know it was something about the orixá Oyá and then, studying (because I’m not from any Afro-descendant denomination) I saw that she is fearless, a warrior, gets her hands dirty and will do what she has to do. Once done, you know what you want and where to get there and so are many women. I only discovered this after the music was made.
His career covers diverse areas, from Biological Sciences to environmental management. How do these experiences intertwine with his artistic expression, especially in a track as symbolic as “Daughter of the Wind”?
I taught biological sciences for almost 30 years and was always aware of environmental issues. At that time, even though I wasn’t a music professional, I was already creating projects, compositions that were worked on in the classroom, that addressed these themes (dengue fever, pollution, scarcity, reflection on human practices…). My songs are very organic, I don’t have a purpose for composing. They arrive and I execute them. I’ve always had this close connection. Over time I moved more towards the diverse professional musical side, but I didn’t leave the environmental focus. I even think the day of my birth contributed to this. I was born on June 5th, Environment Day.
The poet Renata Correa played a fundamental role in inspiring the song. What was the collaborative creative process like and how important is this partnership in your art?
Renata is such a sweetheart that we hang out together at soirees. She has a poetic participation in another song of mine. I don’t even know why, but one day she wouldn’t leave my mind. Then the chorus of the song came to me (Usually the lyrics and the melody come to me): “Daughter of the wind, I turn myself inside out and tame all spaces”. The following week I was thinking about my friend again and the rest of the song came out. A few days later I met her and told her the story and sang the song in full. I was surprised when she cried when she heard me and said: I am Oyá’s daughter.
You mentioned that the song is a tribute to the “daughters of the wind”. How do you see the role of women in music, especially in the context of samba, and how is this reflected in your work?
Women are emerging after many centuries of oppression. The song Filha do vento helps many women to position themselves differently, to empower themselves, to change imposed paradigms. A woman’s role is to do what she likes and wants. I’m very happy to hear many sisters, girls and monas who already say that this song represents them. So I believe she is fulfilling her role.
In addition to the guitar, which is central to “Filha do Vento”, what other musical elements were explored to create a fusion between samba, rock and Afro influence?
The striking, pulsing rhythm that expresses strength in musical styles and ancestry.
Her career includes significant contributions to the production of musical events, highlighting women in samba. How has this experience influenced her approach to female representation in music?
Some themes that cross me I try to express through my compositions and female empowerment is one of these crossings. I’m a woman and I like to talk about this, too, not out of fashion, but I think it’s necessary. This has to be addressed in any musical style.
You have a strong presence in trova, with international recognition. How does trova connect with your artistic expression in music, especially in a broader track like “Filha do Vento”?
Trova is a rhythmic expression that only takes place in 4 verses. The first trova I made, in just a few minutes of contact with the theme (Cherry Tree), gained prominence in the competition in Japan. I think I have a certain ease with this (but it shouldn’t be imposed). I believe this helps a lot in musical compositions and Filha do Vento has these strong rhythmic markings.
“Daughter of the Wind” addresses topics such as identity and feminine power. Could you share a little more about the messages you want to convey with this song?
Daughter of the Wind is a “shake” in society and a feminine self-evaluation. I wish every woman could identify as a person of power. Yes POWER: being, being, speaking, opposing yourself, that is, showing yourself whole everywhere.
In addition to the release of the song, the video is also an important part of this project. How do you envision the visual narrative complementing the message of “Daughter of the Wind”?
It is a narrative about a woman who has a simple daily life, like everyone else. She loves her family, protects them, but in addition, she shows her artistic side with some of her main musical references.
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