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Nueva Canción

Nueva Canción (“New Song”) is a movement that combines socially and politically conscious lyrics with traditional Latin American folk music, drawing on Andean, African, and Spanish elements. After originating in Chile and Argentina in the 1950s, the movement quickly spread throughout Latin America. Many of the artists in the movement faced persecution, exile, and even death because of the powerful political messages in their songs. Zorzal Duo specializes in the performance of nueva canción.



La Bala

This song is by Nicaraguan singer-songwriter Ofilio Picón (b. 1957), a self-taught musician who came to music through the leftist student groups in León, Nicaragua, and more recently has performed with the Mejia-Godoy brothers. The text is by Nicaraguan poet Salomón de la Selva (1893-1958), who actively opposed the first Somoza dictatorship. Although they lived in different eras, both actively opposed the Somoza dictatorships. (

El Cristo de Palacaguina

This is another song from Nicaragua that stems from the effort to mobilize leftist governments into power and to depose the second Somoza dictatorship. It is one of the best-known songs by Nicaraguan singer-songwriter Carlos Mejía Godoy ((b. 1943). It draws on Liberation Theology’s idea of Christ as a fighter for social justice. Together with his younger brother Luis, Mejíia Godoy is known for his work in collecting and disseminating traditional Nicaraguan folk music. In 1998, Luis and Carlos Mejía Godoy founded a cultural center and restaurant called La Casa de los Mejía-Godoy. (

Inconsciente colectivo

Charly Garcia (b. 1951) is an Argentine songwriter and pianist who writes in a rock and roll style. In 1979, he was almost jailed because of the political messages in his songs. Inconciente Colectivo (Subjective Unconscious) was written in the early 1980s, a time of social and political effervescence in Argentina marked by the end of the military dictatorship and the return of civil government. (

Maria, Maria

Brazilian composer Milton Nascimiento (b. 1942) writes about Maria—it could be any of the thousands of  poor Marias—and how all people deserve to live, not just to survive. (

Sueño con serpientes

Cuban composer Silvio Rodriguez (b. 1946) was one of the founders of the nueva trova cubana (new Cuban song), the Cuban counterpart to the Latin American nueva canción movement. In Cuba, nueva trova began in the early years of the Socialist revolution. Singers and writers of nueva canción, including Rodriquez, were frequently banned during periods of political oppression and dictatorships in Latin America. Since 2003, Rodriquez has been a member of the Cuban parliament. (

Vengo a ofrecer mi corazon

Rodolfo “Fito” Páez (b. 1963), an Argentinean singer-songwriter, pianist, and film director, has received two Latin Grammies. Although he primarily writes rock, his music took on a markedly political edge towards the end of the 1980s in the context of the democratic opening in Argentina. Because of this, he is linked to the nueva canción (new song) movement. (

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