Main meanings of capo in English

: capo1capo2

capo1

(also capo tasto)

Pronunciation /ˈkapəʊ/

Translate capo into Spanish

nouncapos

  • A clamp fastened across all the strings of a fretted musical instrument to raise their tuning by a chosen amount.

    ‘Tuners, capos, pics, guitar straps and a set of extra strings are all handy toys.’
    • ‘It can be silly things, like we'll use a capo and drop D, tune the string down to make a chord, rather than just play the chord normally.’
    • ‘With Tielli if he screws up, he stops, laughs and starts again - as he did when he forgot his capo and had to borrow one from Wayne Omaha guitarist-vocalist Matt James.’
    • ‘I bet you didn't know Pat Metheny used a capo did you?’
    • ‘I have an open-tuned bouzouki, borrowed from a friend, and a capo, so in theory I can play in any key.’
    • ‘He was obviously nervous, hands shaking as he put on the capo.’
    • ‘Unfulfilled, unfortunately, and someone had apparently moved the capo.’
    • ‘When it turned out that Ahuja had forgotten her capo, Osborne kindly ran backstage to get her one.’
    • ‘Rock players usually have a facility with bar chords and don't need a capo.’
    • ‘‘Temporary’ should come included with stool and capo, with its murky chord progression and mumbled, depressive vocals.’
    brace, vice, press

Origin

Late 19th century from Italian capo tasto, literally ‘head stop’.

Main meanings of capo in English

: capo1capo2

capo2

Pronunciation /ˈkapəʊ/

Translate capo into Spanish

nouncapos

North American
  • The head of a crime syndicate, especially the Mafia, or a branch of one.

    ‘the Sicilian capo claims he controls most of the world's heroin trade’
    • ‘In Queens, New York, two weeks of digging an alleged mafia bone yard has led to two capos of the Bonanno crime family.’
    • ‘Or because we tend to think of the politicians and the presidency as occupying a parallel world - Mafia dons and capos dispatching one another in a turf war.’
    • ‘It was the prosecution of a Gambino crime family capo and his crew for narcotics trafficking, murder, racketeering, jury tampering and other charges.’
    • ‘He extracted a guilty plea from Mafia capo John Gambino.’
    • ‘A Genovese crime family capo known as ‘Sammy Meatballs’ was overheard talking about the union.’
    • ‘On FBI tapes, Gambino capo DePalma claims the mob controls this union.’
    • ‘This is the time for the extended family to come together, to pay its respects to the dons and capos, and a time for people who want to be associated with the family to come and be introduced.’
    • ‘But as a don, he has no choice but to protect his capos.’
    • ‘Season 4 begins with him confronting his ill-performing capos.’
    • ‘Back in New York, Tony Sirico, he plays Paulie Walnuts, a Sopranos family capo who's in trouble with Russian Mafia.’
    • ‘The Feds say Napolitano was killed in retribution for his ties to Pistone - and they have a ‘high-ranking’ witness who has linked Massino and acting capo Frank Lino to the crime.’
    • ‘Brazzi should surely be a capo, not an employee, and the Five Families think the Corleones want to off him because they have their eye on his lucrative Olive Oil business.’
    • ‘Vinnie, Tony, Little Dominic, Charlie, and the big man himself, the capo, Frankie Pero… they didn't quite become firm friends, though he has written to them since his return to Ireland.’
    • ‘Organised crime is all around, even if it's no longer at the scale when Richie ‘the Boot’ Boiardo - a capo or captain for the famed Genovese family - lived out in Livingston.’
    • ‘Harvey Keitel plays Charlie, the wiseguy dandy, a Catholic uneasily preoccupied by eternal damnation, but employed as a novice enforcer by his Uncle, a capo from the old country.’
    • ‘A 400-pound capo doesn't vanish into thin air.’
    • ‘Giacomo is both capo, boss, and capofamiglia, head of the family.’
    • ‘No, we're not talking James Gandolfini, who returns to the premium channel as capo during the third season of the mob dramedy The Sopranos, which premieres with back-to-back new episodes March 4, but another Jersey guy.’
    • ‘Tony Soprano is no Kurtz or Keyser Soze, although his capos - Silvio and Paulie Walnuts - do occasionally compare him with Napoleon.’

Origin

1950s Italian, from Latin caput ‘head’.