From Unearthing The Music
From 1926 to 1974 the 'National Dictatorship' and the subsequent 'Estado Novo' (new state) ruled Portugal in what is known as its second republic.
Inspired by conservative and autocratic ideologies, and led by Antonio de Oliveira Salazar (until 1968), this regime was primarily characterized as corporatist, nationalist and isolationist, defending the country's traditional catholicism as a pillar of the nation while firmly opposing communism, socialism, anarchism, liberalism, and anti-colonialism (the regime stood for the perpetuation of Portugal as a 'pluricontinental' nation via its vast, centuries-old empire that included Angola, Mozambique, Macau, Goa and many other territories in Africa and Asia).
With mottos such as 'Deus, Pátria e Família' (God, Country and Family) and 'Orgulhosamente sós' (Proudly alone), innovation, experimentation and creativity were the sort of drives and values that were discouraged and considered contrary to the desired societal flow; in music, avant-garde and modern tendencies had little to no space to penetrate the cultural milieu and even less to be developed by local creators. Apart from some isolated cases, which were frequently located in the upper economic extracts of society and with people that had often to move abroad in order to have conditions to create freely, the musical underground and the oppositional artistic endeavors were mostly in the realm of folk protest songs.
By 1974, and is one of the longest-surviving authoritarian regimes in Europe, Portugal had the lowest per capita income in Western Europe, as well as the highest rate of preventable deaths and infant mortality in the continent. The Carnation Revolution, in April, precipitated a rapid influx of freedom that led to several experimental and creative endeavors in music and in the arts, with the 1980s signaling the development of very interesting independent artistic scenes.