Music: Enrique Rodríguez – Lyrics: Enrique Cadícamo

Argentine tango London | Son cosas del bandoneón spacer_small

RRodriguez and Cadicamo’s Son cosas del bandoneón (Just Like A Bandoneon) illustrates just how central to tango bandoneons are. In this song, the bandoneon is not a mere instrument, it is personified and the poet gave him dark, sad emotions.

As with every song, there are endless ways to decode the lyrics, but here is our take on it…

One way to look at it is to say that the instrument conveys the poet’s own emotions, hence giving him the safety net of claiming he is independent from it all – it is merely a song about a bandoneon. As the poet defiantly claims ‘I have no sadness to hide, no pain to dig up’, we guess this is far from the truth.

Another interpretation is that the narrator, used to covering up his emotions, simply can’t hold them anymore when the distinctive bandoneon sound resonates at a milonga. The song is therefore directed at the bandoneon, pleading it to stop as it’s making it challenging to hide; the laughter and partying is proving hard enough already.

Last, the bandoneon could be interpreted as a person at the party, perhaps someone not managing to keep their emotions in check, hence making it harder for the narrator to carry on. The song’s response is a comfort to them, letting them know that they are not alone, “like you, I suffer too, brother bandoneon, don’t cry anymore”.

Son cosas del bandoneón has been translated by Tanguito, Argentine Tango Academy in London. If you feel differently to us or have other interpretations of the lyrics, please feel free to share your opinions, we’d love to hear what you think. 🙂

Nathalie, Tanguito

The video and translation

You can view the video to listen to the music and read the translation at the same time or read the translation at the bottom of this page.

The lyrics

Son cosas del bandoneón
que se ha puesto a rezongar,
no son mías las tristezas
de esta noche de champán…
No tengo que ocultar
ningún amor de ayer
ni tengo penas que desenterrar.
Si algún dolor está
flotando sin querer
sépanlo todos, compañeros, que…
son cosas del bandoneón,

que por gusto, nada más,
esta noche de verbena,

se le ha dado por llorar.

The bandoneon has got
its own reasons to growl;
during this night of champagne,
I have no sadness to claim…
I don’t have to hide
any love from the past.
No pain to dig up.
If by any chance,
pain floats about,
I want my friends, all to know…
that whilst everyone was out
being its old self, the bandoneon,
did something too;
for the sake of it, nothing more,
it started to cry, out of the blue.
Bandoneón de triste rezongar:
tu lamento me hace mal,
bandoneón, tu funeral compás
es un réquiem compadrón…

Hay que reír…
Hay que cantar…
Mejor será mentir
nuestro penar…
Yo, como vos…
sufro también,
hermano bandoneón,
no llores más…

Muchachos, quiero brindar:
“Por la vida que se va”…
Levantemos esta copa
burbujeante de champán…
La risa lucirá
su alegre cascabel
y en nuestras bocas colgará un reír.

Y si el sollozo está
flotando sin querer,
no se preocupen compañeros, que…
Son cosas del bandoneón

que, por gusto nada más,

en la fiesta de esta noche
se le ha dado por llorar.

Bandoneon, you’re sadly growling,
I can feel pain, through hearing your howling,
Bandoneon, your funeral rhythm,
is one for a brave requiem…
One must laugh…
One must sing…
It’s better to lie
our suffering…
Me, like you,
I suffer too,
Brother bandoneon,
don’t cry anymore.

Friends, I’d like to toast,
“to life passing us here”…
Let’s raise a glass
fizzing with champagne…
Laughter flaunts its cheer
like a happy little bell,
this same laughter,
that chokes in our mouths.
And if by any chance sobbing floats about,
don’t worry, my friends…
because tonight, whilst everyone was partying,
being its old self, the bandoneon,
did something too;
for the sake of it, nothing more,
it started to cry, out of the blue.