Single Review: Nelly Furtado “Forca”

Album: Folklore
Year: 2004

According to Canadian Press, Nelly Furtado’s “Forca” was written for the 2004 Euro soccer championships.

She also told the Canadian Press, the enthusiastic single is about the “love of the game, love of life, love of sport.”

A Portguese accordian begins the single. For some people, they are zealous about their favorite team and their performance, paying attention to their statistics and trades during the year. It’s a reason to get together with friends and family, even if some people don’t like sports. At every goal, people will be shouting and dancing. For thos couple seconds, they are as excited as though they were a member of the team. Soccer dominates the fans’ lives. It’s their constant topic of discussion. They wear a team’s jersey while dressing in a room filled with posters and souvenirs. Then drink their morning coffee out of a team mug. (“It is the passion flowing right on through your veins/And it’s the feeling like you’re oh so glad you came/And it’s the moment you remember you’re alive/It is the air you breathe, the element, the fire.”)

Soccer is among one of the most beautiful events in the world. It can provide strength and inspiration for people. It’s one of the most celebrated sports in Europe. (“It is that flower that you took the time to smell/It is the power that you know you got as well/It is the fear inside that you can overcome/This is the orchestra, the rhythm and the drum.”) Bela Fleck joins in on the banjo. For the first verse, the atmosphere of an attentive crowd is created.

The chorus is in Portugese in honor of the event being held in Portugal. Translated into English, forca means “let’s do it.” She encourages the teams to do their best. (“Com uma força, com uma força/Com uma força que ninguem pode parar/Com uma força, com uma força/Com uma fome que ninguem pode matar.”) Here, the drums and other instruments erupt with excitement. It’s as though the home team are on the verge on scoring of a goal and everyone is cheering them on.

The second verse focuses on the athletes. The cheers and applause are music for the players to hear. It drives them to score a goal. Soccer is a wonderful game to play for legions of fans.The athletes hope and strive for a victory. It’s an international event which many people in the nations throughout Europe look forward to every year. (“It is the soundtrack of your ever-flowing life/ It is the wind beneath your feet that makes you fly/It is the beautiful game that you choose to play/When you step out into the world to start your day/You show your face and take it in and scream and pray/You’re gonna win it for yourself and us today/It is the gold, the green, the yellow and the grey/The red and sweat and tears, the love you got. Hey!”)

“Forca!” is chanted by Furtado several times. Her vocals are layered to emphasize her shout as well as create the illusion that there is a stadium full of people.

In the bridge, she tells the athletes them to shoot the goal as high as they can. (“Closer to the sky, closer, way up high, closer to the sky.”)

She sings the chorus once to end the single.

The animated “Forca” is like being at a sports game with a supportive, full crowd.


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