Tico-Tico no Fubá

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Tico-Tico no Fubá [ˈtʃiku ˈtʃiku nu fuˈba] is the title of a renowned Brazilian choro music piece composed by Zequinha de Abreu in 1917. Its original title was Tico-Tico no Farelo, but since Brazilian guitarist Américo Jacomino Canhoto (1889–1928) had a work with the same title,[1] Abreu's work was given its present name in 1931.

Orquestra Colbaz. Recorded in 1931 (Columbia recording company).

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Choro (literally translated meaning lament) is also popularly known as chorinho in the affectionate diminutive form of Brazilian Portuguese. "Fubá" is a type of maize flour, and "tico-tico" is the name of a bird, the rufous-collared sparrow (Zonotrichia capensis). Hence, "tico-tico no fubá" means "sparrow in the cornmeal".

The first recording of the work was made by Orquestra Colbaz (Columbia 22029, 1931).[2]

Tico-Tico no Fubá was recorded and made popular internationally by Carmen Miranda (who performed it onscreen in Copacabana (1947) and Ray Conniff. Another well known recording was made by first lady of the organ, Ethel Smith on the Hammond organ.

A biographical movie by the same title was produced in 1952 by the Brazilian film studio Companhia Cinematográfica Vera Cruz with Anselmo Duarte playing the main role.

The song was also featured in the "Aquarela do Brasil" segment of the Walt Disney film Saludos Amigos (1942) and in Woody Allen's Radio Days (1987). It was also featured in the MGM film Bathing Beauty (1943).

The expression also features in the lyrics to the song "O Pato" made famous by João Gilberto.[3]



This was often performed by the Grateful Dead during their tuning jams which often happened in between songs. This song was also played as an instrumental by James Booker with the Jerry Garcia Band. In Quebec the song has been used for several decades in commercials for Sico paint.

The song was recorded by The Andrews Sisters in 1944. The song was recorded by Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians in 1956 (Decca DL8221) on the album, "A Visit to Disneyland". In the season three Mama's Family episode "An Ill Wind," an intoxicated Iola briefly sings the song's chorus before passing out onto a bed.

The flamenco guitarist Paco de Lucía also performed this song in 1967. This song can be heard on various episodes of the Belgian Kabouter Wesley cartoon.

In 2005, tubist Kyle Turner recorded a version for his album "Expressions - The Heart of the Tuba." In 2006, the Brazilian singer Ney Matogrosso recorded a Cover version for his album Batuque. In 2009, Daniela Mercury recorded the song on her thirteenth studio album Canibália.

In 2015, the japanese band ALI PROJECT recorded a version with new lyrics writted by Takarano Arika, the singer.


  1. ^ Discography of Américo Jacomino Canhoto, Discography of Américo Jacomino Canhoto 2
    CD reissue: Violão Imortal – Canhoto Américo Jacomino; Rvpc 008; Revivendo
  2. ^ CD reissue, Orquestra Colbaz, Gravações Raras, 1
  3. ^ "O Pato" ; João Gilberto, letras.mus.br

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