Milonga of the 1900s
lyrics by Homero Manzi
music by Sebastián Piana
I like mismatched things
and I don’t walk on the sidewalk;
I wear a Massera porkpie hat 
and military boots on my feet.
I loved her because I loved her
and ‘cause of that I’m hurting now—
she’s left me and I don’t even know when,
don’t even know when she’ll come back.
Guitars say her name to me
when they play their songs,
so do the little neighborhood streets,
and the edge of my dagger.
The stars say her name to me
and so does the wind of the arrabal,
I don’t know why they say her name
’cause I can’t just forget her…
 Massera was a brand of dressy hats. Many thanks to tango scholar Oscar Himschoot for this information.
Orquesta Francisco Canaro, canta Ernesto Famá
(Spanish original after the jump)
Milonga del 900
Me gusta lo desparejo
y no voy por la vedera;
uso funghi a lo Massera,*
calzo bota militar.
La quise porque la quise
y por eso ando penando—
se me fue ya ni se cuando,
ni se cuando volverá.
Me la nombran las guitarras
cuando dicen su canción,
las callecitas del barrio,
y el filo de mi facón.
Me la nombran las estrellas
y el viento del arrabal;
no se pa’ que me la nombran
si no la puedo olvidar.
One of the most beautiful slow Milongas that bring back memories of Carlos Gardel who liked to sing it often. This is also one of the best songs to learn the Milonga dance because it has the typical beat.
Love that Milonga, to sing and to dance it! Tell me, what do you think why is it called “Milonga del 900”?!
Love that milonga – to dance and to sing it. Thanks a lot for translation. Tell me, why do you think it’s called “milonga del 900”? 900 what?
Hi, Derrick! I’m from La Plata (capital of Buenos Aires province). I’m glad that you’re spreading our beautiful tango and its best poetry.
The lyrics of “Milonga del 900” are longer that what you have posted. Here are the lyrics missing:
Soy desconfiao’ en amores,
y soy confiao’ en el juego.
Donde me invitan me quedo
y donde sobro también.
Soy del partido de todos
y con todos me la entiendo,
pero váyanlo sabiendo
¡soy hombre de Leandro Alem!
No me gusta el empedrao’
ni me doy con lo moderno.
Descanso cuando ando enfermo
y después que me he sanao’.
La quiero porque la quiero
y por eso la perdono.
No hay nada peor que un encono
para vivir amargao’.
(let me know if you need english translation in some parts…)
I suppose that many versions omit this second part because of the mention of Leandro Alem, leader of Union Civica Radical, a very influent party in Argentina those days… If these verses had been singed in times of Peron’s government, the tango could have had strong or dangerous connotation…
Thanks for your comment! So sorry it took so long to respond. Also, thank you for posting the rest of the lyrics to this lovely milonga. I was aware that there were more; sometimes I translate the full lyric, but often I’ve just put the lyrics that are sung by the estribillista in dance versions. I think that you’re quite correct about the later two verses being suppressed because of the reference to the UCR (for lurkers and readers who aren’t aware, President Hipólito Yrigoyen of the UCR was deposed in 1930 by a military coup led by General José Félix Uriburu).
I hope you’ll comment in the future!
I would be interested in your translation of these additional stanzas…. fascinating how the personal and political are interwoven… gracias.
My plan for this summer is to go back and add the unsung verses for the songs where I didn’t include them (due to laziness at the time). Soon!
I’ll do my best 😉
I’m untrusting at love
and trusting at gambling
Where I’ve been invited I stay
and where I’m left over, too
I belong to the party of everyone
and with everyone I get along
But you’d better know
that I’m a Leandro Alem man!
I don’t like stone pavement
nor get along with modern stuff
I rest when I’m ill
and also after I healed
I loved her because I loved her
and that’s why I forgive her
There’s nothing worse than a spite
to live embittered
Let me know if you feel that some expressions are not quite correct in English 🙂
I would like to recommend you all this website: http://www.todotango.com
There you can find lyrics, biographies, recordings…