Galdino Jesus dos Santos was an indigenous Pataxó activist born and based in Brasil.
His story: In 1997, he attended an indigenous rights meeting in Brasilia. Unfortunately, he missed the last bus to his lodging, and as is the custom for many Brasilians, he stayed all night in the bus shelter in order to catch the next morning bus. A group of youths—the sons of the capital's elite judges and lawyers—found Galdino asleep. As a cruel joke, they poured gasoline on him. Then they set him on fire. Galdino died after suffering burns to 90 percent of his body. These murderous actions are a hideous metaphor of the politics of Brasil's economically powerful elites and how they perceive the poor as 'powerless' and exploitable.
Our story: Indigenous Resistance attended the trial of Galdino's murderers. We met his family and were shown the coroner's photos of his charred corpse. I.R. was also witness to the special treatment given – and light punishment meted out to— the murderers. In the years since his death, we have watched the Brasilian media continuously mute all coverage and remembrance of Galdino's tragedy. This state of neglect stands in sharp contrast to the high visibility given annually for the death of journalist Tim Lopes. But we know that Galdino's death is not an isolated incident. It opens up urgent issues of land demarcation; the exploitation of resources on indigenous ancestral lands; and the abysmal state of indigenous rights throughout Brasil in general. There is no silence on Galdino's story - only shadows.
The poor die forgotten swept under the rug
For the rich and the famous gossip is their nightly drug
News is news when everyone knows your name
But who is really to blame
Indigenous resistance to the media hype
Truth is what they need so it isn't what they like
Indigenous resistance to the status quo
Truth is what you need
Now its time you know
Now its time you know
The Ghost (spoken): When I was at trial of Galdino's murderers in Brasilia, one of the moments permanently etched in my memory, was when i was meeting Galdino's family and one of the Pataxó warriors handed to me the coroner's photo of Galdino. It showed his burnt body 90 percent of which was covered with third degree burns, the result of him being set on fire as a joke. It was a sight absolutely horrifying.
ZMB and Pataxó singers recorded by Francisco X, João S. D. C., and The Ghost.
Jah9 (aka Janine Cunningham): vocals, recorded by Sawandi Simon. Rashaun "Blackush" McAnuff: drums, recorded by David Kennedy at Cedar Hill.
All other music created and arranged by Sawandi Simon.
Mixed at Anchor Studio by Delroy "Fatta" Pottinger.
You can watch a video of dubmaster "Fatta" mixing this track live on YouTube
Mastered at Anchor Studios by Spiderman.
Vocals: The Ghost.
Lyrics by ZMB, Jah9 (aka Janine Cunningham), The Ghost and Tapedave.
Arrangement assistance: Prasonik, Tapedave, The Ghost & the Spirit of Galdino.
Wordplay dubology: Prasonik
Dub inspiration: Sade Simon
Emergency dub logistics: Sabriya Simon