Lluís Llach: «The little chicken (little song)»

Lluís Llach is, for very people, the best songwriter between not only Catalan, but between all the Spanish songwriters. Influenced by French songwriters, Lluís Llach came to take part in the collective Setze Jutges (Sixteen Judges) in 1967, being the last of them in come to take part. His songs have words by himself, but also of great Catalan poets, and some from Greek poet Konstantino Kavafis. The words of his songs are always very hopeful and uthopic. About his music, he started playing French and Italian style music for, later, get more complex musical forms. He has been in active since last year, when he decided to get out the stage.
This one, from his 1972’s LP Com un arbre nu (Like a naked tree), is one of his most imaginative and audacious song by his own, trying to evade censorship. It’s a song that can speak about as woman’s liberation as general freedom.


La gallineta (Cançoneta)

La gallineta ha dit que prou,
ja no vull pondre cap més ou,
a fer punyetes aquest sou
que fa tants anys que m’esclavitza.

I si em vénen ganes de fer-ne
em faré venir un restrenyiment,
no tindrà cap més ou calent
el que de mi se n’aprofita.

La gallina ha dit que no,
visca la revolució (1).

A canvi d’algun gra de blat
m’heu tret la força de volar
però, us ho juro, s’ha acabat!
Tinc per davant tota una vida
i no pateixo pel destí,
que un cop lliurada del botxí
no ha d’haver-hi cap perill
perquè m’entengui amb les veïnes.

La gallina ha dit que no,
visca la revolució.

I els galls que amb mi hauran de dormir
els triaré sans i valents,
que n’estic farta d’impotents
que em fan passar nits avorrides.
Que quedi clar per sempre més,
que jo de verge (2) no en tinc res,
i que, posats a fer, no em ve
d’un segon restrenyiment.

La gallina ha dit que no,
visca la revolució.

The little chicken (little song)

The little chicken said enough is enough,/ I won’t lay my eggs anymore,/ let’s go to hell this day’s wage/ that slave me from so long.// And if makes me want to lay eggs/ I will press and close,/ won’t have more fresh eggs/ who takes advantage of me./ The chiken said no,/ hail to revolution!// In exchange of a wheat grain/ they took away my strength of flying,/ but I swear to you it’s over!/ I have a whole life before me/ and I don’t suffer by the destiny,/ once upon released from the executioner/ shall not to be any danger/ for I understand myself with the neighbors.// The chicken…// And the roosters which shall sleep with me/ I shall search them healthy and braves,/ for I’m tired of impotents/ that make me to pass bored nights./ May stay quite sure for ever more/ that I don’t have nothing like virgin,/ and, ready to lay an egg, I don’t make/ a second press and close.// The chiken…//

Lluís Llach

(1) Llach’s song had to pass censorship; for that there’s 2 versions of the song. This version is that he sung during the recitals after 1975 (Franco’s death year). But in the LP’s version from 1972, the refrain was: "Visca la revulsió!", hail to revulsion.

(2) 1972’s version: I don’t have nothing like fool.

Els Setze Jutges (Sixteen Judges) was a Catalan songwriters colective, founded by Delfí Abella, Miquel Porter and Josep Mª Espinàs, among others, for vindicate language and poetry of the so called Països Catalans (Catalan Countries): the lands, in Spain and France, where Catalan is talked, with an antifrancoist spirit. They decided to use French songwriters’ music, specially Georges Brassens, and no Catalan folklore, because the regime was using it for demonstrate his power over all the Spanish lands. Between them, were future important artists as Joan Manuel Serrat, María del Mar Bonet and her brother Joan Ramón, Rafael Subirachs, Guillermina Motta, Francesc Pi de la Serra, and the last in come in, Lluís Llach, and others until complet 16. Songwriter Raimon, in despite the generally believing, was not a part of the collective, but he collaborated with them.

La Nova Cançó Catalana (New Catalan Song) was a very important songwriter movement that pretended, making of Catalan their expression way, preserve and vindicate the language of Catalonia. Teresa Rebull, a Civil War exhiled, was the forerunner, but singer Raimon was the real beginner. The movement, principally, had two differents tendences: Els Setze Jutges (Sixteen Judges), inspired by French songwriters, and El Grup de Folk (Folk Group), North-American folk-singers inspiration. Jutges were more worried about Catalan poetry and refused to use Catalonia’s folklore due to the populist use that the dictatorship was making with every Spanish folklore; but Grup de Folk like to combine old Catalans songs with North-American folk-songs. But in the beginnings of 70s, both were disolved, but the movement stood. New Catalan Song was imitated by others regional songwriters movement, borning in this way the New Songs from Basque Country, Castilia, Galicia, Andalucia… Some of the names of this movements are songwriters as Raimon, Lluís Llach, María del Mar Bonet, Pau Riba, Marina Rossell, Joan Manuel Serrat, Albert Batiste, Pi de la Serra, Ovidi Montllor; folk-groups as Al Tall and UC; folk-rock groups as Falsterbo 3 and Esquirols; and progresive and psychedelic rock bands as Companya Elèctrica Dharma or Maquina!… among others. 

One response to this post.

  1. Posted by Val on 19 abril, 2008 at 21:39

    Hola! http://server4.foros.net/index2.php?mforum=Somosiguales si quieres pasa por aquí, es una investigación para la universidad, sólo hay que contestar a unas preguntas. Gracias!

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