BAMBAO was named in association with Brandhouse WTS whose superb design made for a great synergy. It was for a Bulmer’s drink made from fermented sugar-cane and called a cachaca, the basis for Brazil’s National drink the Caipirinha. It is one of those brand naming projects where creativity can hold sway. BAMBAO is Brazilian Portuguese for ‘swing’ and as the famous lines go, ‘When Marimba rhythms start to play…..Dance with me, make me sway’.

Phonetically and sound symbolically the movement from the backness of the a to the frontness of the o in the ao dipthong mimics the swing’s rhythmic motion. It also moves like the swaying waters of Copocabana Beach and the mesmeric rhythm of the Samba Carioca danced at Rio de Janeiro. This same ao diphthong, of which Portuguese has many more than most languages, also checks the lilting palatal ñ sound in Caipirinha.

BAMBAO also has a similar structure to the Samba, Brazil’s national dance. A softer than soft word without a strong plosive in sight, it is a crying shame the drink did not find a market big enough to make it ‘Stay with me, sway with me’ all the way.