Portuguese music: funny band names and 80’s pop/rock

Generally speaking, in the Western world, the 1980’s were the time of one-hit wonders, lots of hairspray and men wearing makeup. Although the hairspray and the makeup were actually quite modest in Portugal, when compared to other countries, the 80’s were amazing years for Portuguese music. There was no longer the open censorship of the previous decades and bands actually managed to get away with some lyrics that today, in the era of the politically correct, would be considered “risky”.

For today’s post I’m bringing you three super famous songs from that time. The first one is called “Chiclete” (as in, Chiclets, the bubble gum) by the band Táxi (yes, as in taxi / cab). If you like their sound you may also want to check out their other hit song, called “Cairo”.

Next, we have a band called Trabalhadores do Comércio (literally, commerce workers) and their most famous song “Chamem a polícia” (Call the police). If you know some Portuguese, and if you’re only familiar with the Lisbon accent, you may have some difficulties with this song, as the band sings with a heavy Porto accent. They were actually quite funny and if you like “Chamem a polícia” do check out their lesser known song “De manhã eu vou ao pão” (I go buy bread in the morning). 😀

Last but not least a band called Grupo de Baile (a joke on the bands that played in village/town dances) and their song which eeeeverybody knows: “Patchouly”. Yes, you may know the word patchouly when talking about perfumes, but here it refers to a different kind of perfume… or body odour, to be more precise. I’m sharing a video of the band singing in a TV show (I bet the singer was on something) and I doubt that any band today would get away with a song like this on a famous TV show like that one was. For the studio version, with better sound quality, try this one for example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UDKFOdpy5yA

Gather your Portuguese neighbours / friends / co-workers and have some fun with these hits from the 80’s!

Tell me, which of these songs was your favourite?

If my blog posts somehow make your day better, please consider buying me a coffee at buymeacoffee.com/beyondlisbon. I’ll get the “pastel de nata” myself.  

If you’re more of a PayPal sort of person there’s no problem with that: https://www.paypal.com/paypalme/my/profile.

All my links at: https://linktr.ee/beyondlisbon


  1. That last video was quite entertaining. I think the singer was trying to do his best Mick Jagger impersonation and then some. I miss when MTV actually showed music videos – some of those one (video) hit wonders of the ’80s were great to watch.

  2. Loved the last video, the singer must certainly have taken some “patchouli”
    I remember these songs from the early 1990’s when I moved to Portugal from South Africa, the lyrics would be a bit risque now.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.