Global Music: Baile Funk

One on One with Wierd Goedee
July 11, 2017
Hoodie weather
July 12, 2017

Within the different main genres of urban music you have loads of subgenres. Some of these originate from a specific country or area and hold a certain message or story about their origin. One of these subgenres is Baile Funk, a Brazilian view on funk and dance music.


Baile Funk is also called ‘Favela Funk’ because it originates from the favelas in Brazil. It started as an adaptation of Miami Bass and was known as Funk Carioca. The term Baile Funk or Favela Funk says less about the specific guidelines for the music, but more about where the music is from and where it is showcased. It is all about the parties, which are called Baile Funk, that take place in the favelas.

These parties are famous for their contradictions. You have happy people dancing and having fun but this can be interrupted any moment by some gun shots. Which is not always a negative thing, some say that when guys shoot their rifle in the air during a specific song, it shows they like the song.

Inside the music

Baile Funk is a way of expression that comes out of these neighbourhoods, known for their mostly bad reputations. Most people living in the favelas face poverty and criminality on a daily basis. The differences of income in Brazil are huge, that’s why the difference in neighbourhoods is also so big.

There are several big Brazilian Baile Funk artists who all embody a different spectrum of the genre. Some perform the real gangster rap of the favelas, where others serve as an escape for the people with nice upbeat music and somewhat inappropriate lyrics. It is music with a feeling of ‘letting it all go’ in every note that has been put into it.

Some criticize the lyrics because they are often about criminality or sex and regarded as very provocative. Some say it is intended with a certain humour and shouldn’t be taken too seriously, whilst others do not really care what they sing. By making Funk they are able to provide for their family without having to engage in illegal activities.

Baile in the western world

Baile Funk is influencing more and more western artists. Diplo went to the favelas of Rio de Janeiro to make his Favela on Blast mixtape. MIA has also collaborated with Diplo on an unofficial mixtape with a lot of Baile Funk influences and samples. If you pay attention, Baile Funk is pretty integrated into the western club scene nowadays as well, a lot of DJ’s mix some of the tunes. It is just the beginning of (perhaps) conquering the world.


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