Here is a bulerías that you would hear at the end of a guajiras. I learned this one from Alfonso Cid.
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"You cannot destroy the tradition without first learning about it." - Belén Maya
I have a guajiras verse to share with you today along with a video of Belén Maya and Mayte Martín, but first allow me to give you some background:
I'm in Seattle winding down after workshops Belén Maya this week.
On Wednesday I went to a lecture she gave at Seattle Central College.
In that lecture Belén spoke about herself as an artist.
She talked about how she expresses herself as an individual through flamenco. She talked about how she had to dedicate to studying and understanding traditional flamenco in order to do her own thing. She talked about how she danced in tablaos (doing more traditional style flamenco) at night while studying on her own and dancing in her father's company (which was more modern) during the day.
Here is a letra from that clip, and you can hear Mayte Martín sing it at 4 minutes and 50 seconds in the video below.
Sometimes you want to know a song to go along with the dance form you're studying in class. Other times you want to know the words to that particular flamenco song you like so much. And sometimes you long to know what those words mean.
I'd like to help you with that
Below you'll find a collection of letras (flamenco verses) organized by palo (flamenco form.)
After over four years of translating and posting flamenco songs, and not quite as many years of writing them out and turning them into things like this, there are quite a number of flamenco verses (and often accompanying videos) to be found around here.
I've learned a lot about Spanish, a bit about Caló, and much about flamenco through the process of doing these translations, very often getting help along the way. Some of the translations are better than others, and the letras rarely convey the same feeling in English as they do in their original form. Still the translations give a general idea of what the verse is about.
That letra is below followed by a video of Concha Jareño dancing por guajiras. LOVE this dance.
Contigo me caso Indiana
si se entera tu papá y se lo dice a tu mamá
tengo una casa en la Habana destinada para tí ay!
con el techo de marfil
y el piso de plataforma para tí blanca paloma
llevo yo la flor de lis
Aquella noche, caía
la lluvia muy lentamente,
cantaba triste la fuente
su dulce monotonía.
Un almendro florecía
al aire frío de enero,
y en la quietud del sendero,
sobre la arena amarilla
me ofreciste la mejilla
para mis besos primeros.
February 26 Saturday Our first day of classes...Nervous as ever to go to Manuel Liñan's class, and I think my nerves were contagious. Sorry, Heather. We were like eager kindergartners on the first day of school arriving 20 minutes early, the first ones there, I don't know if I've ever been the first to arrive. Actually, Manolillo was there and even said hi - we soooo enjoyed class. Went to find the supermarket afterward, and on the way (I hadn't put my jacket on yet; it was warm and we'd just worked hard!) I pass an older woman on the street. Without making eye contact she looks at my clothes and says, "Hija, hace calor pero tampoco para irte así" Haha, I love Spain! Went home to make lunch, rest a bit and review what we'd learned in class. Then off to afternoon class with Marco Flores. Was wonderful to see him again and to thank him in person for the letter of invitation he wrote me to come to the festival.