‘Volando’ our way to the New Year - wings of music for flying start
The beginning of a year should always be hopeful, especially when the previous year pushed us into anguish. In order to start off the new timescale of our life with expectant feelings, why don’t we borrow the power of music and words to give us imaginary wings?
Wishing for having a better, uplifting, promising year, what we’d need is a theme of freedom from despair. Having this in mind I’d like to present three songs that feature the word ‘volar’, meaning ‘to fly’ in Spanish.
La Esperanza de Volar
Included in the album ‘Corren Tiempos de Alegría’ by Diego el Cigala in 2001, this track isn’t particularly upbeat, even though it’s musically arranged in a style of rumba flamenca. Still, this stylish tune would give you a little uplift by listening to it, especially at the main refrain ‘tengo la esperanza de volar en mundo nuevo’ (I hope to fly into a new world’), yearning to escape from emotional pains and suffering in the harsh reality. Don’t we know such a sentiment very well?
‘La Esperanza de Volar’ by Diego el Cigala
Composed by Kiko Veneno for Camarón de la Isla for his album ‘La leyenda del tiempo’ in 1979, this is a more care-free sounding song. It still briefly mentions the existence of pain in life, but seeks a sense of freedom and fun, chanting ‘volando voy, volando vengo’ (I go flying, I come flying). The tune has become so popular in the world of flamenco that many other artists have covered it until now.
‘Volando Voy’ by Camarón de la Isla
A rather calming and dreamy version by Chambao:
‘Volando Voy’ by Chambao
Originally titled in Italian ‘Nel blu, dipinto di blu’ (in the blue painted blue), this is one of the most famous songs in the world, with the current title ‘Volare’, a word taken from the memorable refrain ‘volare oh oh, cantare oh oh oh oh…’ (to fly, to sing). ‘Volare’ means ‘to fly’ in Italian, and incidentally indicates ‘I will fly’ in Spanish if you add an accent on ‘e’ like ‘volaré’.
The creators were Domenico Modugno and Franco Migliacci in 1958, who were enticed by two dream-like paintings of Marc Chagall, ‘Le coq rouge’ featuring a yellow man floating in midair, and ‘Le peintre et la modelle’ showing half of a man’s face coloured in blue. From here was born the imagery of such a man who dreams of painting himself in blue and of being able to fly in the blue sky.
‘Volare’ (Nel blu, dipinto di blu) by Domenico Modugno
The song has been so much adored that it encouraged various cover versions internationally, both in the original language and translations. In 1958, for example, Dalida, known as a multicultural French singer, released a French edition ‘Dans le bleu du ciel bleu’ (in the blue of the blue sky):
‘Dans le bleu du ciel bleu’ by Dalida
The familiar flamenco-rumba version by Gipsy Kings wasn’t released until 1989, sung partly in Italian and partly in Spanish. Nowadays, we hardly have a Spanish night out without hearing this song in a bar, restaurant or during flamenco show intervals. Under the lockdown situation, we miss such an occasion, don’t we?
Though our mobility is still restricted in most of the areas, I hope these songs with the motif of flying will give wings to your positivity for getting off to a flying start in the year 2021. Happy New Year!
‘Volare’ - The official video by Gipsy Kings:
Nel blu, dipinto di blu