Hasta Siempre, Comandante

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A fragment of the Che Guevara monument in Santa Clara, Cuba

"Hasta Siempre, Comandante", or simply "Hasta Siempre", is a 1965 song by Cuban composer Carlos Puebla. The song's lyrics are a reply to revolutionary Che Guevara's farewell letter when he left Cuba, in order to foster revolution in the Congo and later Bolivia,[1] where he would be captured and executed.

The lyrics recount key moments of the Cuban Revolution, describing Che Guevara and his role as a revolutionary commander. The song became iconic after Guevara's death, and many left-leaning artists did their own cover versions of the song afterwards. The title is a part of Guevara's well known saying "¡Hasta la Victoria Siempre!" ("Until Victory, Always!"). The song was re-released by Nathalie Cardone in 1997.

Metrical structure[edit]

Like many of the songs of the author and in line with the tradition of the Cuban and Caribbean music, the song consists of a refrain plus a series of five verses (quatrain), rhyming ABBA, with each line written in octosyllabic verse.

5th stanza
[1] (1)Vie-(2)nes (3)que-(4)man-(5)do (6)la (7)bri-(8)sa
[2] (1)con (2)so-(3)les (4)de (5)pri-(6)ma-(7)ve-(8)ra
[3] (1)pa-(2)ra (3)plan-(4)tar (5)la (6)ban-(7)de-(8)ra
[4] (1)con (2)la (3)luz (4)de (5)tu (6)son-(7)ri-(8)sa

Lyrics[edit]

Original lyrics in Spanish
Aprendimos a quererte
desde la histórica altura
donde el Sol de tu bravura
le puso cerco a la muerte.
Chorus:
Aquí se queda la clara,
la entrañable transparencia,
de tu querida presencia,
Comandante Che Guevara.
Tu mano gloriosa y fuerte
sobre la Historia dispara
cuando todo Santa Clara
se despierta para verte.
[Chorus]
Vienes quemando la brisa
con soles de primavera
para plantar la bandera
con la luz de tu sonrisa.
[Chorus]
Tu amor revolucionario
te conduce a nueva empresa
donde esperan la firmeza
de tu brazo libertario.
[Chorus]
Seguiremos adelante,
como junto a tí seguimos,
y con Fidel te decimos :
«¡Hasta siempre, Comandante!»
Translated English lyrics[citation needed]
We learned to love you
from the historical heights
where the sun of your bravery
laid siege to death
Chorus:
Here lies the clear,
the dear transparency
of your beloved presence,
Commander Che Guevara
Your glorious and strong hand
over History it shoots
when all of Santa Clara
awakens to see you
[Chorus]
You come burning the breeze
with springtime suns
to plant the flag
with the light of your smile
[Chorus]
Your revolutionary love
leads you to new undertaking
where they are waiting for the firmness
of your liberating arm
[Chorus]
We will carry on
as we followed you then
and with Fidel we say to you:
"Until forever, Commander!"

There are more than 200 versions of this song.[2] The song has also been covered by Compay Segundo, Soledad Bravo,[3][4] Óscar Chávez,[5] Nathalie Cardone,[6] Robert Wyatt,[7] Nomadi, Inés Rivero, Silvio Rodríguez, Ángel Parra, Celso Piña, Veronica Rapella (whose performance is known for Joan Baez by a common mistake),[2] Rolando Alarcón, Los Olimareños, Maria Farantouri, Jan Garbarek, Wolf Biermann, Boikot, Los Calchakis (commonly wrongly attributed to Buena Vista Social Club[2]), George Dalaras, Giovanni Mirabassi and Al Di Meola, Ahmet Koç, Mohsen Namjoo, Enrique Bunbury, Interitus Dei among others. Although Victor Jara never sang this song, many attribute the Carlos Puebla's version to him by mistake.[2] The first 8 lines of the song has also been rendered as prologue to a melody song in a malayalam socio-political movie entitled "Left Right Left" released in 2013, directed by Arun Kumar Aravind and composed by Gopi Sunder.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Aviva Chomsky (13 December 2010). A History of the Cuban Revolution. John Wiley & Sons. p. 121. ISBN 978-1-4051-8774-9. Retrieved 3 August 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c d "All versions of Some musics". Retrieved 2010-06-21. 
  3. ^ "Soledad Bravo / Soledad - Version 1969". Retrieved 2007-05-25. 
  4. ^ "Soledad Bravo / Hasta Siempre". Retrieved 2009-11-01. 
  5. ^ "OSCAR CHAVEZ 20 Exitos". Archived from the original on 2007-09-26. Retrieved 2007-05-25. 
  6. ^ "Nathalie Cardone / Hasta Siempre". 1997. Archived from the original on 2007-09-26. Retrieved 2007-05-25. 
  7. ^ "Nomadi Hasta Siempre Live 1995". 1995. Retrieved 2013-07-05. 

External links[edit]