Sertanejo universitário

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Sertanejo Universitário is a Brazilian musical style that comes from a mix of Sertanejo, segments of freestyle with touches of beats coming from arrocha and vanerão. It is considered the third segment in the evolution of música sertaneja, coming after sertanejo roots and romantic sertanejo, very popular between the decades of the 1980s and 1990s. Simple songs dominate the style, and those sung by two singers of the genre, who are overwhelmingly young and considered "College Kids." (Universitario). Instead of traditional accordions and violins, synthesizers and electric guitars started to be used more frequently in this style of music. This variation differentiates itself from sertanejo as it has more elements of pop, and informal language.


The style had surged during the middle of the first decade of 2000, through the experience of sertanejo singers that had fused the traditional rhythms with other musical elements. One of the first duos to develop the style were João Bosco and Vinícius. The eruption onto the national scene was in 2005, when the single "Leilão", of the duo Cesar Menotti and Fabiano became a hit.


The interaction between the countryside and the cities in the academic sphere contributed to the surge of an individual style. Having violas and guitars disseminated on campuses and student residences, the old sertaneja music ending up joining the violas and guitars with modern instruments such as electric guitars, bass guitars, batteries, brass instruments, and percussion.

The initial result was a new twist to the old and classic sertaneja roots, which over the course of the years starting distancing themselves from their earlier styles, and acquiring their own identity. In this new century the musical influences of the youth in the interior also gradually became mixed with other styles, especially with pop, arrocha and carioca funk, styles that are predominantly seen in parties organized by university students.

Rocked by great popular appeal among the youth of both sexes, the new segment has won a lot of attention in the media. Simple music and lyrics, dance beats, and refrains that are easily memorized automatically, generating a large "boom" in style, causing it to leave the restricted University environment and spread to radios and festivals all over Brazil. The repercussions and success of the genre is seen as every day new duos and sertanejo groups are on the rise.


Due to its rise after the second evolution of sertanejo (Romantic Sertanejo), this style does not come with regional lyrics and situations lived by rural people (like in Sertanejo roots). Usually, the lyrics talk about situations that ordinarily occur in the lives of young people, having a strong appeal towards themes of betrayal, drunkenness, ostentation.

Singers and songs[edit]

Sertanejo Universitario found young people in their search for growth, bringing focus to music that speaks of love and ballads. Today, new singers emerge as other adopt the style, and every day the genre becomes more and more popular. Examples of this expansion of Sertanejo Universitario is music like Michel Telo with the hit, that became an international fever, "Ai Se Eu Te Pego", Gusttavo Lima with the song "Balada", Jorge & Mateus with "Amo Noite e Dia", Joao Neto & Frederico with "Le Le Le", Luan Santana with "Sograo Caprichou", Munhoz & Mariano with the music Camaro Amarelo, Cristiano Araujo with "Efeitos" and Thaeme & Thiago with "Hoje Nao".

Gusttavo Lima is one of the best known names in Sertanejo Universitario in Brazil.

Stylistic Origins: Sertanejo, Caipira Music, Arrocha, Forro, Brega, Tecnobrega, Pop, Embolada, and Vanerao.

Cultural Context: Interior of the South-East, Center-West, and South of Brazil.

Traditional Instruments:Guitar, Electric Guitar, Country Violin, Twelve-String Guitar, Double Bass (4 or 6 cord), Accordion, Keyboard, Piano, Drums, Percussion and Saxophone

Popularity: In all of Brazil, and in various parts of Europe, Latin America, and the United States.

Derivative forms

  • Sertanejo
  • Arrocha


  • Caipira (or Sertanejo Roots)
  • Romantic Sertanejo
  • Sertanejo Pop, Sertanejo Arrocha


External links[edit]