In Portugal, Fado is considered the song of the soul, and the ideal cast for its performance features two or three guitarists, one playing the famous Portuguese viola, and a singer. Ever since her debut in the Thirties, Amália Rodrigues admirably incorporated this art. As she said herself, “I don't sing Fado, Fado sings through me”.
The greatest poets tailored lyrics for her (Pedro Homem de Mello, Gabriel de Oliveira, João Linhares Barbosa, Frederico de Brito, Amadeu do Vale), and in the Sixties, she turned to the great poems of classical Portuguese literature, notably by Camões. The best composers wrote her melodies, and the best musicians accompanied her, from Raúl Nery and Fontes Rocha to Joel Pina or Carlos Gonçalves.
She was the Ambassadress of Fado for over sixty years, and her popularity was immense the world over.