Fado: ‘Vai Tu’ in Lisbon’s ‘most photographed funicular’ street near Bairro Alto & every Sunday traditional fado out of the tourist circle
Fado is Portugal’s most well known music. Traditionally, the fado houses in Portugal are popular and a meeting spot for families and friends. In general: stay away in Lisbon from practically all fado places in Bairro Alto. They are too touristy and the quality not always worth the high prices, a tourist trap!
‘Vai Tu’ is a local community group. This neighborhood café is popular with locals who gather to sing along, located in Bica, close to the Bairro Alto area.
You won’t always find the best fadistas, but don’t let that scare you off. This is real traditional fado, out of the tourist circle, where the fado singers can enter spontaneously and improvise.
Every Sunday evening fado singers and dinner from 20:00 – 24:00.
No professional waiters, it’s a volonteer job. The traditional Portuguese food is simple, cheap but good (ca. 5 euro pp), a bottle of wine cost 5 euro. The atmosphere is very relaxed and it’s a mix of young and old.
This singer is over 80 years old…Vai Tu’ provides a unique window into classic fado popular culture. YouTube
On the wall the legendary painting of Maria Severa
Fadistas often wear a black shawl of mourning as the legendary fadista Maria Severa Onofriando did after her passionate liaison with a nobleman, Conde de Vimioso. The affair ended badly. She died at age of 26 in 1846, either from suicide or tuberculosis.