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Syndic Literary Journal

Music Performance: “Bracero” by David Spener

Phil Ochs’ Bracero

Translation & Performance by David Spener



Here is a new Spanish version of an old English-language song that you might appreciate: Phil Ochs’ “Bracero,” from 1963. I translated the song into Spanish to sing to my Chilean compañeros when I was there earlier in the year. Ochs had a special connection to Chile, having visited the country in 1971, where he was befriended by Victor Jara. My version is a fairly faithful translation, approved by Chilean singer-songwriters who helped me with it, with something of a huapango rhythm on guitar. Attached find an mp3 made on a hand held digital recorder in my bedroom and a sheet with lyrics in English and Spanish. – David Spener




Authors/Artists Bios

David Spener is a sociologist who works principally on Latino and Latin American issues at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. A singer/songwriter in his younger years, he currently is studying the role played by song in movements for social justice in the Americas in the final decades of the twentieth century.


Compiled/Published by LeRoy Chatfield
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