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What is the story of 'Andrea Doria'? (Legião Urbana)

“I want to have someone to talk to, Someone who then doesn't use what I said Against me” – Renato Russo

Andrea Doria
Imagem: Reprodução/Legião Urbana

“Andrea Doria”, one of the songs on the album “Dois” by the band Legião Urbana, is little known but with a rich message that could not go unnoticed by fans of the band and national rock.

In July 1986, the second album, “Dois”, hits stores. The songs “Tempo Perdido”, “Eduardo e Monica”, “Índios”, and “Quase sem Querer” were released on the radio. It generated “Musica Urbana 2”, “Fábrica” and the daring “Daniel Na Cova dos Leões”. "Dois" surpassed the initial sales of 100,000 copies of the previous one and went platinum, having sold over 250,000 copies at the time of release alone.

The song was born from a joke inside the studio to pass the time, Dado went to play drums, Bonfá took the guitar and Renato Russo took the bass. Suddenly, Bonfá played a sequence of two notes, at which time the other members of the band said: “Stop! For! Play it again.”

They told this story in a promotional interview for the album, see this video at 02:27:

In “Andrea Doria” the band wanted to break with what Renato Russo called “O Mantra dos Três Acordes”, the band had an objective with the second album which was to demonstrate that they had musical competence and avoid a label that it was just a band to sell records. Some songs on the first album already had a little bit of this “Mantra dos Três Acordes” story. Chord is a combination of at least 3 notes that are repeated in the song in sequence and, in “Andrea Doria”, you notice one of the longest sequences of chords in the entire discography of the band.

Read too: What is the story of 'Time Lost'? (Urban Legion)

During the creation of the song, the band members were thinking that the song was a little boring with more than 5 minutes on the same beat, they believed that something was missing and who helped them find a solution was the sound technician, Amaro Moço, who said: “You need to give dynamics to this song.”

In the book “Legionary Discobiography” he said the following:

“'Andrea Doria' was linear, so while they played I kept looking for an effect here, another there… But nothing worked! I had to talk to them: 'There's only one shape… Choose parts of the song and play it more lightly, to bring it to life.' Then she started showing up.”

"Glass Diamond" was the name of a song that would go on the album "Dois", actually the idea was that "Dois" would be a double album, but they ruled out that possibility. However, the title of this song ended up in the lyrics of “Andrea Doria”.

“And diamonds from pieces of glass”

Andrea Doria

Imagem: Reprodução/Autor Desconhecido

SS Andrea Doria is the name of an Italian transatlantic ship that sank in 1956 when she was heading to New York, she was one of the most powerful and luxurious ships at the time, the sinking happened after she hit MS Stockholm near the American east coast, more than 1,600 people managed to survive, but 46 people died.

The ship was named after an admiral from the city of Genoa who lived between 1466 and 1560.

But what are the lyrics to the song about? She obviously does not describe the accident of the SS Andrea Doria that occurred in 1956. In the book “Renato Russo de A a Z” there is a large excerpt from an interview in which Renato explains to us a little bit of the lyrics of the song:

“'Andrea Doria' is the same thing as “Será”: a young man who wants to change the world, because he is horrible. It puts well the question of youth, having dreams, making plans and bumps into this world of hypocrisy, lies, capitalism, consumerism. And, in this case, Andrea Doria is a girl. The song is a dialogue between a girl who was full of life, joy and plans, and who always gave me strength, but, at that moment, she is the one who is broken. There are things she says to me and there are things I say to her – the world is horrible, but we're going to make it, we're going together, etc. When you enter the adult world, if you're not careful, you let cynicism in. (…) And music is a conversation on top of that, and ends up saying: “We have all the luck in the world.'”

Renato Russo does not make it clear if this “girl” actually exists or if it is his creation.

“'Andrea Doria' is a ship that has sunk. (…) When choosing the title of the song, we did a lot of mythologies to make it look cool.”

In other words, it seems that Renato wanted to make a metaphor between the sinking ship and the girl who was in a decadent situation.

I know it's all meaningless
I want to have someone to talk to
Someone who then doesn't use what I said
Against me

- Renato Russo

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Written By

Hello, I'm Matheus. I am currently graduating in Advertising, working as CEO and Creative Director at Araujo Media, Commercial Manager at TFX LATAM and I am the Creator of the Brazilian History portal.

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