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Una emoción (1943)

An Emotion
lyrics by José María Suñé
music by Raúl Kaplún

Come see what I bring
to this marriage of words and melody:
it’s the song that inspired me,
an evocation that cradled me in its arms last night.
It’s the voice of tango played on every streetcorner
by those whose lives are ruled by an emotion.

I want to sing for this sound
that grows sweeter and more seductive every time.
Wrapped up in a dream last night I heard it,
an emotion made of things from my yesterdays:

The house where I was born,
the iron fence and the vines,
the old carousel, the rosebush.

Its accent is the song of a sentimental voice,
its rhythm is the measure that lives in my city—
it has no pretensions,
it doesn’t want to be lewd,
it’s called tango, and nothing more.

Since its measures
are so humble and so simple,
why add unseemly things
in every phrase?
With just this little bit of emotion,
it’s very easy to touch the heart.

Orquesta Ricardo Tanturi, singer Enrique Campos (1943)

Orquesta Lucio Demare, singer Raúl Berón (1943)

You can also read Rick McGarrey’s translation, with comments and annotations.

(Spanish original after the jump)

Una emoción
letra de José María Suñé

Vengan a ver que traigo yo
en esta unión de notas y palabras:
es la canción que me inspiró
la evocación que anoche me acunaba.
Es voz de tango modulado en cada esquina,
por el que vive una emoción que lo domina.

Quiero cantar por este son
que es cada vez más dulce y seductor.
Envuelto en la ilusión anoche lo escuché,
compuesta la emoción por cosas de mi ayer:

la casa en que nací,
la reja y el parral,
la vieja calesita y el rosal.

Su acento es la canción de voz sentimental,
su ritmo es el compás que vive en mi ciudad—
no tiene pretensión,
no quiere ser procaz,
se llama tango y nada más.

Si es tan humilde y tan sencillo
en sus compases,
¿porqué anotarle un mal ejemplo
en cada frase?
Con este resto de emoción
muy fácil es llegar al corazón.

About Derrick Del Pilar

Born and raised in Chicago, I came to the tango while studying at the Universidad de Belgrano in Buenos Aires in 2006. In 2008 I earned my B.A. with majors in Creative Writing and Spanish & Portuguese from the University of Arizona, and in 2009 I earned an M.A. in Latin American Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. My specialty is the history & literature of early 20th century Argentina.

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Disclaimer

The sound files on this site are included for illustrative purposes only. Those wishing to obtain high quality versions for their personal collections should purchase commercially available copies. If you can't get to a record store in Buenos Aires, a great many tangos are available, song by song, from http://www.tangotunes.com/ and others can be found on iTunes (transfer quality varies widely). Many CDs are available through online retailers such as Michael Lavocah's superb http://milonga.co.uk/.

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