Pablo Guerrero: Extremadura

Pablo Guerrero is
one of the most tender and sweeter Spanish songwriters, also a genial
poet and musician. Born in Esparragosa de Lares, a village of Badajoz, Extremadura,
in 1946. In 1969 comes to Madrid for singing; his first songs are
influenced by Extremadura’s traditional songs, but soon he’ll sing also
songs with Dylan, Paco Ibáñez, Georges Brassens, Moustaki and Jose
Afonso influences. His great song is "A cántaros" ("It’s pouring"),
that became in a song of solidarity. Pablo’s poetry is one of the most
beautiful: talking about friendship, solidarity, manship, brotherhood,
his land and, of course, love. He also recorded songs with Africans
influence, and today, without the previous power of voice, his songs
are more literary than musicals. Some of his best LPs are A cántaros (It’s pouring) and Porque amamos el fuego (Because we love fire).

(Flag of Extremadura)
"Extremadura". This song, in the traditional mood, is a
homage to Pablo’s little fatherland. The region of Extremadura is
situated in the middle-southwest of the Iberian Peninsula, at the
frontier with Portugal, at the south of Castilla y León and at the
north of Andalucía; its capital is Mérida, and has two provinces:
Cáceres and Badajoz. Traditionally, it has been a land of sheepherds
and peasants, famous by its hams. Historically, a lot of conquerors
were born there. In despite this historical fact, Extremadura has
always been a very poor land. Until 1980, lot of people left
Extremadura for working in other lands as Madrid, Bilbao and Barcelona.
If you are familiarizated with Spanish language, you maybe shall notice some strange words and pronunciations when you hear it: it’s because Pablo is singing in the dialect of Extremadura. Of all this things is talking this wonderful song, played on stage by
Pablo in the Paris’ Olympia theater, in 1975.


campo de toros heridos
que no braman.
¿ Ocultarán el gemido
de su garganta?
hombres que rezan a Dios
para que llueva.
pero ¿quién les asegura
la cosecha?
soledad llena de encinas
sobre campos con veredas,
¿por qué se fueron los hombres
de tu tierra?
tierra de conquistadores
que apenas te dieron nada.
Ay, mi Extremadura
Ay, mi Extremadura
levántate y anda.

Extremadura,/ wounded bulls field/ that doesn’t roar./ Shall they hide
the groan/ of his throat?/ Extremadura,/ men that are praying to God/
for raining./ But, who ensure them the harvest?/ Extremadura,/
loneliness full of holm oaks/ over fields with streams,/ why men/ went
out of your soil?/ Extremadura,/ land of conquerors/ that hardly gave
you anything./ Oh, my bitter Extremadura!/ Oh, my Extremadura!/  Rise
up and walk!

Pablo Guerrero

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