I, too, dreamt (Yo también soñé) [Canaro]

maida y charlo

Is there anyone here who doesn’t like Roberto Maida’s voice? Every time I listen to whatever song Francisco Canaro has created together with his singer Maida, I am amazed by the quality of this combination…. and after trying to study the lyrics in more detail, I also conclude that they dealt with a lot of particularly beautiful tango poetry, too.

I invite you to listen to a very beautiful and danceable – I love walking to this song at home – version of the following song by Roberto Maida, a rather sad song, with lyrics that are stuck in my head and probably won’t get out anytime soon. You can also listen to a different version by a fellow named Charlo with full lyrics (translated below, too) that you can’t really dance too. It’s a scene from a movie and I always love watching the rather rare videos of tango singers. Charlo was one of the now kind of forgotten but still interesting Guardia Vieja singers, like Carlos Gardel, Agustin Magaldi and Ignacio Corsini.


I, too, have been dreaming
tales of illusion
since my childhood.
And it was a blue dream*
that deceived me
in my youth.
I dreamt about love,
I felt the warmth of
faithful affection.
Madly, I wasted
the treasures I forged
and in the midst of my sleep,
I was happy in the warmth
of those caresses that I
later would not know.

(The more tender
the love in a dream,
the more bitter
the awakening becomes.)
An iron hand brings
us back to reality
and our dreams change into
misery and wickedness.
I would like to dream,
sleep once and for all
and never wake up again.

(After losing my hope and
faith, I saw her appear.
Pretty as a picture**
she looked at me while
passing through my solitude.
She came closer to me and
I heard her voice speaking of love.
My hope was born again
and now that I am happy
I am afraid of dreaming,
because if this were a dream,
I wouldn’t be able to live any longer.)

*In case you look up what a blue dream means, you probably learn something more about marihuana. The actual intended meaning seems to be a bit archaic nowadays.

** The original words would literally mean ‘beautiful like a sun’, which sounds typically Spanish to me. Therefore, I converted this into a bit more acceptable English expression that, ultimately, has the same meaning.

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1 Comment

  1. “beautiful as the sun” could be heard as un-English, I see what you mean, but it could equally well be interpreted as a biblical quotation, and a very reasonable one in a lyric like this. The Song of Solomon, King James version, VI:10 “Who is she that looketh forth as the morning, fair as the moon, clear as the sun, and terrible as an army with banners?”

    Such a wonderful voice.


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