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Friday, June 18, 2010

92. "El Dorado 1997" by Manu Chao

Okay, there are a few unfortunate whack circumstances affecting how this one turned out. The idea was that after a totally live, in-front-of-an-audience, have-to-dress-up-for-it kind of recording, I'd do one that was totally devoid of "real" elements except for my voice.

But after I'd programmed pretty much all of the music, something happened to the session that eradicated it, and I had to do it all again real fast. That is why the music sounds rubbish.

The other thing is the words. The lyrics are apparently in a weird hybrid of Portuguese and Spanish. Nobody in the real world within the sound of my voice was able to clarify them for me, so I did a bunch of translations from both Spanish and Portuguese to English, hoping I could cobble some new approximation of the sense of the thing together. Let me tell you, that sort of thing just doesn't work. What I got was that some kind of police action was carried out against a particular group of rural Brazilians (rendered "rednecks" by one search engine and "bass" by another; Wikipedia clarified who these folks were) resulting in a casualty that sends some kind of political shockwaves through the greater world. Another word was variously defined as "talk" or "phallus", and the nonsensical word "pizza" stubbornly refused to change to anything reasonable in any rendition. Not enough to really work with, so instead I sang all four translations as a sort of pidgin round or something. That is why the words don't make any sense.

I'm sure someone can elucidate the meaning of the song for me, but nobody could in the finite time allowed to me to finish the tune, and at some point you have to stop doing research and actually start recording something, so I did. And then it got erased, which brings us back to do re mi...

Personnel: Rex

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