Tango Lyrics in Spanish and English


The reason (1920

Listen to Floreal Ruiz with the orchestra of Jose Basso,

El motivo
Music by: Juan Carlos Cobian
Lyrics by: Pascual Contursi
Translated by: Alberto Paz
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Last update on: 3/4/06

Pascual Contursi liked to write lyrics to existing instrumental songs. His most notable success was "Mi noche triste" which he wrote over the music of Samuel Castriota's "Lita." "El motivo" was the first tango by Cobian recorded by Carlos Gardel under the name of "Pobre paica" (Poor woman) initially given by Contursi. Cobian's reputation changed the name of the tango to its original title. Jose Basso's arrangement and Floreal Ruiz's voice stand as one of the most powerful and celebrated recordings.

Version en castellanoEnglish translation
Mina que fue en otros tiempos
la más papa milonguera
y en esas noches tangueras
fue la reina del festin...
Hoy no tiene pa' ponerse
ni zapatos, ni vestidos,
anda enferma, y el amigo
no aporto para el bulin.

Ya no tienen sus ojazos
esos fuertes resplandores,
y en su cara los colores
se le ven palidecer.
Y esta enferma, sufre y llora
y manya con sentimiento,
de que asi, enferma y sin vento,
más naides la va a querer.

Pobre paica que ha tenido
a la gente rechiflada
y supo con la mirada
conquistar una pasión...
Hoy no tiene quien se arrime
por cariño a su catrera.
¡ Pobre paica arrabalera
que quedo sin corazón!

Y cuando de los bandoneones
se oyen las notas de un tango,
pobre florcita de fango
siente en su alma vibrar
las nostalgias de otros tiempos,
de placeres y de amores.
¡Hoy solo son sinsabores!
que la invitan a llorar!
Woman who was in other times
the most beautiful tango dancer,
and in those nights of tango
she was the queen of the feast...
Today she does not have
shoes or dresses to wear
she is ill and the boy friend
has not contributed for the rent...

Her big eyes no longer have
that strong gleam
and in her face the colors
seem to become pale
And she is sick, suffers and cries
and understands with feelings,
that this way, ill and without money,
nobody is going to want her...

Poor woman who had driven
people totally daft
and knew with her glance
to conquer a passion...
Today she has nobody coming
for affection to her bed.
Poor women of the outskirts
who was left without heart!

And when from the bandoneons
the notes of a tango are heard,
poor mud's little flower
feels in her soul the vibration
of the nostalgia of other times,
of the pleasures and loves...
Today they are only sorrows!
that invite her to cry..

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