At the Protest Salon held at the Info-Activism Camp we asked our five speakers to bring a slogan, an image and a song through which they could frame the context and histories of the peoples’ movements they are part of.
In the first part of this playlist we expanded this into something everyone else from Camp could also contribute to so we crowdsourced a list from all our participants. As songs from Latin America were absent from the first playlist, Part II features songs chosen by one of the campers Andrea, having sung them all in countless marches and demonstrations. Listen and enjoy!
“Como la cigarra”
The song refers to people still singing like the cicada, coming out of the earth after many ears…as Argentina was going out of military rule.
The song says “your friends can disappear, other things can disappear” as over 30.000 people “disappeared” between 1976 and 1983. The song also uses the metaphor to refer to the military rules who, like dinosaurs, will certainly disappear.
The song says “we are still singing” and we have hope that things will change. Originally from the 70s. The singer has a disappeared sister, and his mother is part of the “Mothers of Plaza de Mayo” movement.
Pedro y Pablo
“Marcha de la Bronca”
This is a march (alluding to the military kind of music played everywhere during military rule) and it is about rage and being angry. The quintessential protest. Nonequivocal. Protesting against those who steal and get rich using money and things that belong to the public.
If you want to read more about the context for these songs, the BBC is featuring a programme on protest songs in Argentina, all under their “Freedom Season” theme.
Vai Passar (it will pass)
Don’t let this contagious carnival samba trick you! The song refers to people with power who build “strange cathedrals” with money that is not theirs. And quite like carnival, it will also pass.
Tanto Mar (so much sea)
To commemorate the revolution in Portugal against military rule. This song became a symbol in Brazil and was banned for a long time. The revolution was know as the “Carnation” revolution, and this is also referred to in the song. The singer says they “save a carnation for me” in the hope that the overturn of military rule comes also to Brazil.
Other singers who wrote protest songs in Brazil and were banned for it, include Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil.