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Zuza Homem de Mello, the country’s greatest music researcher, dies in São Paulo, aged 87



São Paulo – The writer, journalist and double bass player, José Eduardo Homem de Mello, better known as Zuza, died today (4), while sleeping in his apartment, in the Pinheiros neighborhood, in São Paulo. Considered the greatest music researcher in the country, he was 87 years old. According to the family, the cause of death was an acute myocardial infarction.

Zuza, who was born in São Paulo in 1933, went on to study engineering but, encouraged by his mother, decided to study music and improve as a smuggler at the Juilliard School, in New York, in the 1950s. On his return to Brazil, he started working at TV Record as a sound technician in programs such as “O Fino da Bossa”, “Jovem Guarda” and “Bossaudade”. He was director of festivals such as “O Fino da Música” and “Guarujá Summer Festival”, as well as presenter of the program “Jazz Brasil”, on TV Cultura.

Remember in Revista do Brasil: Brazilian musical bibliography passes by Zuza Homem de Mello

Between 1977 and 1988 he produced and presented the Zuza Program, Pan AM Radio, and criticized popular music for The State of S. Paulo, acting since then as artistic director of jazz concerts and festivals and record producer. He is the author, among others, of books Brazilian Popular Music Sung and Told (Improvements, 1976), The Song in Time, co-authored with Jairo Severiano (Editora 34, 1997 and 1998), Joao Gilberto (Publifolha, 2001), The Age of Festivals (Editora 34, 2003), Music in the Veins (Editora 34, 2007) and Music with Z (Editora 34, 2014, winner of the APCA Award).

He was also the producer of several shows and albums by artists such as Elis Regina and Milton Nascimento. The paulistano was dedicated to identifying genres and repertoires that remained relevant over time. “What you call quality, I change to the word perpetuity (…) The music that will remain from now on, ten years from now, is what interests me. For me, what counts is what will always last, ”he said.

Zuza’s story and its importance in the country’s cultural scene are shown in Janaína Dalri’s documentary, Zuza Homem de Jazz, from 2018. The feature also recalls the period she lived in the USA, when she attended Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald concerts and Billie Holliday, among other jazz greats at the time.

The Uol portal reproduced, without mentioning the time, a statement by Caetano Veloso about the researcher: “Zuza is one of the great figures of my Brazil. I visited him in Sampa to talk and listen to music, and he showed me everything. He is a music connoisseur, passionate about jazz and close to MPB. And what an elegant, educated, civilized man! ”

Last Tuesday (29), Zuza had finished a biography about the composer, singer, violinist and Bossa Nova icon, João Gilberto.

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more unemployment and more informality




São Paulo – Government, businessmen and some parliamentarians were in tune with the defense of the bill that, if approved, would lead to the creation of Law 13,467 in 2017. The so-called labor reform, after all, would lead to the creation of millions of jobs. This would happen to the extent that it would end the rigidity of the legislation, which they treated as being “plastered”, facilitating hiring and giving the much-needed “modernization” to the Brazilian labor market.

Because the law completed three years on November 11 “and nobody celebrated, not even timidly”, recalls analyst Marcos Verlaine, from the Inter-Union Department of Parliamentary Advisory (Diap). “Among the expectations generated by the authors, the government of that time, the businessmen, who sponsored, defended and acted strongly in Congress to approve it, the media and reality, remained the harsh reality”, he says, in an article. He defines the measure passed by Congress as a “capital Trojan horse” to implode labor rights.

Collective bargaining?

The insistent defense of the “negotiated over the legislature”, a recurring expression at the time, was not to privilege negotiation, notes the analyst. “It was to remove rights, since the negotiations – both CCT (ccollective labor agreements) and ACT (collective labor agreements) – they never prevented, on the contrary, that the conventions surpass the CLT, nor that the agreements surpass the conventions. ”

The “millions” of jobs did not come, even before the pandemic. The growth in occupation was basically due to informal work. In 2016, the year before the “reform”, the country had 10.1 million unpaid employees in the private sector and 22.4 million self-employed workers. Last year, they were 11.6 million and 24.2 million, respectively (check table). The data are from the National Household Sample Survey (Pnad) Continua, from IBGE.

Modernization or precariousness?

Employment with a wallet fell. And the Gini index at work, which measures inequality, which until 2015 fell, rose again the following year and has not stopped.

The “reform” introduced hiring modalities, such as intermittent work. They were also presented as items of the necessary “modernization”, but union members and researchers identify them as additional signs of precariousness in the market. Although still small, the participation of the intermittent modality has been growing.

This week, the Federal Supreme Court (STF) began to judge direct actions of unconstitutionality against intermittent work. In his vote, the rapporteur, Minister Edson Fachin, considered the item unconstitutional and causing damage to workers’ health. But his colleagues Kassio Nunes Marques and Alexandre Moraes were in favor of the sport. The trial was interrupted by a request for view from Minister Rosa Weber.

If it is impossible to revoke the law in its entirety, Verlaine suggests specific changes, citing intermittent hiring. “It is necessary to negotiate with all political and social actors in order to bring about changes in this scorched earth scenario” he argues.

read more: ‘Labor Reform’: Stories of a False Promise and Changes in ‘Endless Destruction’

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