GITANA by LOS SHAKERS


They only ever released two EPs and never sold many records, but Los Shakers (no relation to the Uruguayan group of the same name) were one of the toughest sounding Spanish groups of the mid-1960s.

In 1965 they were on the bill supporting the the Beatles in Barcelona, they recorded their first EP, and they had a cameo in the movie ‘Megatón Ye-Ye’. The film starred Micky y Los Tonys and not long after two of Los Shakers left to join this group, who were more successful at the time. Despite this setback Los Shakers continued (with a new member Ricky Morales) and recorded a second EP in 1966 which includes this track. “Gitana” was their rock reworking of an old Spanish copla, a type of Spanish song associated with Andalusia, which had been recorded by Marujita Diaz.

Meanwhile, Los Brincos were the most popular group in Spain. However, at this point their frontmen Juan and Junior both left the group to work together as a duo. Rather than collapse Los Brincos decided to take replacements from one of the hottest groups in Madrid – Los Shakers. They recruited Vicente Martínez and Ricky Morales, the latter being Junior’s brother! It worked and the group continued their success until the end of the sixties.

Having key members poached by bigger rivals for the second time must have been a bitter pill to swallow, but Los Shakers tried to carry on. However, they split up in 1967 without having recorded any more material. A sad end to a group who could have been contenders.

GITANA

Gitana, que de las cuevas granadinas
Vas recorriendo el mundo entero
Llevando el fuego de tu sol.
 
Gitana, de negro pelo y tez morena,
De suave talle de agarena,
Eres aroma de una flor.

ESTRIBILLO:
Por eso en tus danzas y coplas
Tú llevas el lindo color
Del bello cielo de España,
Que es tierra de celos y amor.

Gitana, de negro pelo y tez morena,
De suave talle de agarena,
Eres aroma de una flor.
 
ESTRIBILLO
GYPSY

Gypsy, from the caves of Granada
You go around the whole world
Carrying the flame of your sun
 
Gypsy, with black hair and dark skin
With the charming figure of a Moorish woman
You are the aroma of a flower

CHORUS:
That's why in your dances and coplas
You wear the pretty colour
Of the beautiful Spanish sky
That is a land of jealousy and love

Gypsy, with black hair and dark skin
With the charming figure of a Moorish woman
You are the aroma of a flower
 
CHORUS
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VÁLGAME LA MACARENA by LOS CHEYENES

Brincosis was the Spanish equivalent of Beatlemania and it soon inspired a flood of Spanish beat groups. One of these was Los Cheyenes from Barcelona, and this track from 1965 attempts to emulate Los Brincos, not least their track “Flamenco”. They were scheduled to appear on TV to promote this track, but they pulled out when the station demanded that they cut their hair first!

¡Válgame! is an interjection that means something like “Goodness gracious!”. There is a related expression ¡Válgame Dios! which means “Good God!”.

In this song Macarena is the name of the woman. Using ‘La’ or ‘El’ with names is a kind of slang which is quite common is certain parts of Spain, including Catalonia. However, many Spaniards consider it rather vulgar or even insulting. I suppose in the context of the song it makes sense.

Thanks to Enjovher at Lyrics Translate for transcribing the Spanish lyrics which I have translated.

VÁLGAME LA MACARENA

ESTRIBILLO:
¡Válgame la Macarena,
sí te puedo comprender!
después de quererme tanto (¡eso!)
me has dejado de querer.
 
Tienes tu cara morena,
quemadita por el sol,
el reflejo de la pena
que te causa mi dolor.
 
Si sabes que yo te quiero (¡mentira!)
¿por qué pides tú perdón?
que a ti te hecho lo mismo
y me busqué otro amor.
 
ESTRIBILLO
 
Si sabes que yo te quiero (¡mentira!)
¿por qué pides tú perdón? (¡eso!)
que a ti te hecho lo mismo
y me busqué otro amor.
 
ESTRIBILLO
 
Me has dejado de querer...
GOODNESS GRACIOUS MACARENA

CHORUS:
Goodness gracious, Macarena,
Yes, I can understand you!
After loving me so much (so!)
You’ve stopped loving me
 
You’ve got your brown face
Burnt by the sun
The reflection of the sorrow
That my pain causes you
 
If you know that I love you (lie!)
Why do you ask for forgiveness?
I did the same to you
And I looked for another lover
 
CHORUS
 
If you know that I love you (a lie!)
Why do you ask for forgiveness? (so!)
I did the same to you
And I looked for another love.
 
CHORUS
 
You’ve stopped loving me…

Pop, Rock, Psych and Garage from Spain and Latin America (1964-69)

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To celebrate four years of Spanish Pop Lyrics, and also as a kind of Xmas gift, here is this blog’s first ever compilation / mix-tape (much of it in authentic low fidelity). Download

All the songs are sung in Spanish, and all but a handful are original songs rather than covers.

It’s generally up tempo, but there are a couple of slower tracks at the end.
Almost all the songs have been featured on this blog, and those that aren’t may well appear in the near future. Anyway, you know where to look for the lyrics… 

UPDATE (Nov 2017): Now the lyrics to all 28 songs are available on this blog. The download link has also been updated.

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ALL THE CHILDREN SLEEP By FORCE WEST

ENGLISH:

The first song on this blog (three years ago!) was ‘Mejor’ by Los Brincos, released in 1966.
https://spanishpoplyrics.wordpress.com/2010/01/13/mejor-by-los-brincos-3/

A year later the group Force West (from Bristol in the west of England) released this note for note copy in the UK, though it wasn’t a hit. As you can see Los Brincos are not credited on the label! The only names given are presumably the writers of the English lyrics, which bear no relation to the Spanish original.
Force West later released a mildly psychedelic single under the ludicrous monicker The Oscar Bicycle. Their final incarnation rocked a little harder under the name Shakane.
This song is available on the compilation ‘Rockin’ with the Pirates’, so presumably it got some play on pirate radio at the time.

SPANISH:

Force West eran un grupo de Bristol, una ciudad del suroeste de Inglaterra. ‘All The Children Sleep’ (todos los niños duermen) salió en 1967, mas que un año despues de ‘Mejor’ de los Brincos. La musica es una copia de ‘Mejor’, pero la letra inglesa es completamente diferente del original. El sencillo no fue un éxito.

FLAMENCO By LOS BRINCOS

Part 2: Los Brincos and Spanish Beat Groups in the Sixties

By 1964 the stance of the Franco regime towards rock had relaxed slightly, perhaps because Spain was trying to present a more tourist friendly image to the rest of Europe. The Beatles’ ‘A Hard Day’s Night’ appeared on cinema screens and the time was ripe for a Spanish response.

Fernando Arbex, ex-drummer with Los Estudiantes, put together a new group featuring the singers Juan Pardo and Antonio ‘Junior’ Morals, who had both had (separate and unsuccessful) stints as lead singer with Los Pekenikes (before that group switched to instrumentals). With two strong singers Los Brincos could emulate Lennon/McCartney style harmonies, and crucially they did it with original songs rather than covers. At first they hedged their bets, singing in both English and Spanish, but it was the Spanish songs that charmed the nation.

Now it had been shown that you could sing rock in Spanish and be successful other groups quickly followed suit, though few of them had the songwriting flair of Los Brincos.

The idea behind their breakthrough song was pretty simple: What would The Beatles sound like playing flamenco? It’s arguably the first ever attempt at flamenco rock, and despite not being particulary authentic it remains one of the most enjoyable. It appeared on their first LP in 1964.

FLAMENCO

Si me preguntas a dónde voy 
y si tú quieres saber quién soy 
piensa que es fácil de adivinar 
que yo soy yo, 
oh oh, oh oh oh oh

Si te preocupa mi por venir 
no puedes dejar de pensar en mí 
no lograrás hacerme cambiar: 
soy como soy, 
oh oh, oh oh oh oh 

Aaa, aaa, aaa, aaa 
Hey, hey , hey hey 

Piénsalo bien 
y decídete, 
no tengo tiempo para perder, 
pronto mi novia tú vas a ser, 
lo digo yo , 
oh oh, oh oh oh oh 

Nunca jamás te arrepentirás 
porque si buscas felicidad 
solo a mi lado la encontrarás 
lo digo yo, 
oh oh, oh oh oh oh.
FLAMENCO

If you ask me where I’m going
And if you want to know who I am
Realise that it’s easy to guess
That I’m me
oh oh, oh oh oh oh

If you’re worried about me coming 
You can’t stop thinking about me 
You won’t manage to make me change
I’m how I am 
oh oh, oh oh oh oh 

Aaa, aaa, aaa, aaa 
Hey, hey , hey hey

Think about it carefully 
and make up your mind
I don’t have time to waste
You’re going to be my girlfriend soon
That’s what I say
oh oh, oh oh oh oh

You’ll never ever regret it
Because if you’re looking for happiness
You’ll only find it by my side
That’s what I say
oh oh, oh oh oh oh
*

CHORDS / ACORDES

Intro: Dm – C – Bb 

Verse: A – Bb(#11) (repeat)

Bridge: Dm – C – Bb – A
Coda: A – Bb – B – C – B – Bb – A

BORRACHO By LOS BRINCOS

Another track from the Brincos (released in 1965). They were an important group because they showed that writing original songs in Spanish (rather than translating UK and US hits) was the way forward for Spanish rock.

BORRACHO

*

Borracho!

¿Borracho yo? Tururú

*

Quiero estar borracho otra vez,

Otra vez, otra vez.

A ver si así dejo de beber

De una vez.

*

Porque si estoy borracho,

Me olvidaré de ti

Así, así, así, así

*

No quiero estar borracho otra vez,

Otra vez, otra vez.

Porque te veo doble

Y no está bién,

No está bién.

*

No quiero estar borracho,

Quiero vivir feliz

Así, así, así, así.

*

Oiga joven,

Otra copita por favor

Y que conste que no estoy borracho

Estoy un poquito alegre, hip

*

No quiero estar borracho…

DRUNK

*

Drunk!

I’m drunk? You must be joking!

*

I want to get drunk again,

Again, again.

We’ll see if I stop drinking

Some time.

*

Because if I’m drunk

I‘ll forget you

This way…

*

I don’t want to be drunk again,

Again, again.

Because I see you double

And it’s not good

It’s not good

*

I don’t want to be drunk

I want to live a happy life,

Like this…

*

Excuse me young man,

Another glass please

I’m quite sure I’m not drunk

I’m just a little bit happy (hic)

*

I don’t want to be drunk…

*

 

GUITAR CHORDS:
Chorus: B – E – B – G# – B – E – B
Bridge: G# - C#m – B – E – A – Cm – A – B
*
GRAMMAR:
Querer + Infinitive - To Want

RENACERÁ by LOS BRINCOS

Another song by Los Brincos. Their songs usually have relatively simple lyrics, so are a good place to start if your Spanish is basic. Renacerá (‘It Will Be Reborn’) is from 1966.
RENACERÁ

*

Mi amor está lejos de aquí

No sé por qué se fue de mí

Pero algún día volverá

Y lo pasado pasará

Todo de nuevo entre los dos

Renacerá…

*

Mi corazón llora por tí

No sabes tú lo que sufrí

Pero algún día volverás

Y lo pasado pasará

Todo de nuevo entre los dos

Renacerá…
IT WILL BE REBORN

*

My love is far away

I don’t know why she left me

But someday she will return

And the past will pass

Everything new between us

It will be reborn….

*

My heart cries for you

You don’t know how I suffered

But someday you will return

And the past will pass

Everything new between us

It will be reborn….

 

*
GUITAR CHORDS:

Verse: B – E – B – B – B – E – B – B

Chorus: E – F# – B – G#m – E – F# – E – B

*

GRAMMAR:

Nacer: To be born

Renacer: To be reborn

Renacerá: It will be reborn (our love)

 

MEJOR by LOS BRINCOS

Mejor (‘Better’) is a single from 1966 by Los Brincos. They were one of the most successful Spanish rock bands of the 1960s, and they are often referred to as the “Spanish Beatles”.
 
MEJOR

*

Mejor era cuando decías

que tambien me querias

ahora todo paso (ya)

*

Mejor era cuando pensabas

que me necesitabas

ahora todo paso (ya)

*

Estribillo:

Y tu, tu, tu ya no eres igual

no me digas que si

no sé lo que pensar

no sé lo que decir

*

Mejor era cuando creía

que tu me comprendias

ahora veo que no (no)

*

Mejor era cuando creia

que tu no me mentias

ahora veo que si

*

Mejor, será, olvidar tu amor

será, mejor, tal vez para los dos

tal vez para los dos
BETTER

*

It was better when you said

that you loved me too

now that’s all passed (already)

*

It was better when you thought

that you needed me

now that’s all passed (already)

*

Chorus:

And you, you, you now you aren’t the same

Don’t tell me you are

I don’t know what to think

I don’t know what to say

*

It was better when I believed

that you understood me

now I see it’s not so (no)

*

It was better when I believed

that you didn’t lie to me

now I see it’s so

*

It will be better to forget your love

It will ll be better, perhaps for both of us

Perhaps for both of us

GUITAR CHORDS:
Verse: D – D – D – A
Chorus: Bm – Em – A – Em – D – G – A – G – A
Bridge: D – Bm – Em – A
 *
GRAMMAR:
The verse uses the imperfect tense to describe the past (era, decías, querias etc.) when she loved him – things were better!
The chorus switches to the present simple to describe the current (heartbroken) situation.