Jovano Jovanke

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Jovano, Jovanke (Macedonian: Јовано, Јованке, sometimes transliterated with Y for languages where J does not represent the palatal approximant) is a traditional folk song of the Macedonia region. It is popular in and frequently performed in Republic of Macedonia, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and the Macedonia region of Greece. It is about two young lovers separated by their disapproving parents. The song mentions the Vardar river which runs through the Republic of Macedonia and present-day Greece.[1]

Jovana is a female name, (a Slavic equivalent of Joan or Joanna), and Jovanka is its diminutive. The forms Jovano and Jovanke are in the vocative case.


Macedonian English translation[2]

Јовано, Jованке
Jовано, Jованке
Крај Вардарот седиш, мори
Бело платно белиш,
Бело платно белиш, душо
Се на горе гледаш. (X2)

Jовано, Jованке,
јас те тебе чакам, мори
Дома да ми дојдеш,
А ти не доаѓаш, душо
Срце мое, Jовано. (X2)

Jовано, Jованке,
Твојата мајка, мори
Тебе не те пушта,
Крај мене да дојдеш, душо
Срце мое, Jовано. (X2)

Jovano, Jovanke,
you sit by the Vardar,
bleaching your white linen,
bleaching your white linen, my dear,
looking at the hills. (X2)
Jovano, Jovanke,
I'm waiting for you
to come to my home,
and you don't come, my dear,
my heart, Jovano. (X2)

Jovano, Jovanke,
your mother
doesn't let you
come to me, my dear,
my heart, Jovano. (X2)


  • Macedonian singer and songwriter Aleksandar Sarievski performed a traditional version of the song throughout his musical career (1946–2002).[3]
  • In 1967, former Yugoslav beat band Zlatni Dečaci recorded a version of the song for Vladan Slijepčević's film Where to After the Rain?.
  • In 1967, by Avi & Esther Ofarim
  • In 1968, Turkish singer Ajda Pekkan recorded a version of the song titled as Ne Tadı Var Bu Dünyanın with newly written lyrics in Turkish language.
  • In 1986, Croatian and former Yugoslav hard rock band Osmi Putnik incorporated a part of the melody in their song "Jovana".
  • In 1986, Macedonian and former Yugoslav jazz-fusion and rock band Leb i Sol (Macedonian: Леб и сол), produced an instrumental version of the song.
  • In 1991, Croatian singer and songwriter Branimir Štulić recorded song for his album "Sevdah za Paulu Horvat". Later, in 2012, he recorded one more version in his home-studio in Netherlands.
  • In 1994, Macedonian and former Yugoslav band Anastasia (Macedonian: Анастасија) included a part of the melody in the score "Coming Back Home 1" for the soundtrack of Before the Rain.
  • In 1999, Romanian band Transsylvania Phoenix included a version of the song on their album Ora-Hora.
  • In 1997 and 2003, Vienna-based world music band Nim Sofyan released a version of the song.
  • In 2001, Celtic bouzouki pioneers Roger Landes and Chipper Thompson recorded an instrumental version on their album, "The Janissary Stomp."
  • In 2003, New Zealand based world music band Many Hands released a version of this song on their album Routes.
  • In 2003, Polish band Kroke and the violinist Nigel Kennedy performed this song on their album East meets East.
  • In 2006, Berlin-based world music band 17 Hippies released a version of the song on their album Hippies Live in Berlin. The band previously released it several times, first time on their album Rock 'n' Roll 13 in 1995.
  • In 2006, Macedonian singer Toše Proeski released a version of the song on his album Božilak (Macedonian: Божилак). Proeski has frequently performed the song at his live concerts as well.
  • In 2007, Bulgarian singer and entertainer Slavi Trifonov performed the song and filmed a patriotic video to accompany it, which recreates the Bulgarian victory in the Battle of Doiran during the First World War.[4]
  • In 2009, Croatian-Istrian-based band Hot Club de Istra made a gypsy jazz arrangement of the song.
  • In 2009, the melody of this song was used in the sixth sequel of the TV advertising campaign Macedonia Timeless.
  • In 2011, Polish producer Marcin Wyrosek released a version of the song with Polish singer Kayah on his album.
  • In 2011, What Cheer? Brigade, a brass band based in Providence, Rhode Island released a version of the song on their album Classy: Live in Pawtucket.
  • In March 2014 the Slovenian vocal choir Perpetuum Jazzile released an a capella arrangement as a free download from Soundcloud.
  • In 2015, Croatian singer Nina Kraljić who represented Croatia in the Eurovision Song Contest performed the song.[5]


  1. ^ Paul Boizot (2008-03-03). "Jovano Jovanke". Retrieved 2009-10-29.  (Macedonian)/(English)
  2. ^ "Текст на Јovano, Јovanke (Јовано, Јованке) + превод на Английски (Версия #1)". Retrieved 2016-05-27. 
  3. ^ "Aleksandar Sarievski - Jovano Jovanke". 2007. Retrieved 2009-08-24. 
  4. ^ "Slavi Trifonov i Ku-Ku Bend - Jovano Jovanke". 2007-03-21. Retrieved 2007-07-28. 
  5. ^ Jovano, Jovanke performed by Nina Kraljić on YouTube

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