Are you ready for some more groovy Latin music to get your feet moving? I’ve got a Friday Song for you.
La canción de viernes: A Dios Le Pido by Juanes
You can listen and view the lyrics in this video. Maybe sing along?
A Short History Lesson
In an interview with NPR in 2012, Juanes talked a little about the inspiration behind writing A Dios Le Pido.
When I was a little kid, I always meditate, or I used to pray every morning, every night. I just asked to God to protect my family and my country, the people I love, you know, simple things, but very, very, very deep at the same time. And it’s like a song that I wrote thinking the beauty of life.
Juanes is also a social activist in Colombia, the country of his birth. He set up a foundation, Mi Sangre (My Blood) which has been working towards the eradication of landmines in Colombia. The foundation also addresses advancing peace resolutions in conflict zones and raising awareness about AIDS.
Colombia was wracked by civil war throughout much of its post-independence history. Conflicts between Conservative and Liberal parties reached a peak during the La Violencia period (1948-58).Â With the emergence of the FARC in the 1960s tensions rose and conflict escalated between left-wing guerilla groups, right-wing paramilitary groups and the Colombian government. Landmines were a frequently used defensive and offensive device for the guerilla groups (and paramilitary groups) seeking to protect their claimed territory. Thousands of innocent civilians, however, have fallen victim to these hidden ‘sleeping’ weapons. An estimated 800,000 Colombian civilians are at risk of stepping on a landmine as they walk to their fields, to school or to market. Groups like Mi Sangre are instrumental in the national efforts to remove landmines and protect civilians.
Spanish Lesson on the Subjunctive
In terms of using this song for a listening exercise, I find it would be more suited to a higher level Spanish student. The lyrics are not overly clear to an untrained ear and in some parts the lyrics are sung quite quickly. However, I do like this song for it use of the subjunctive. Juanes pointed out that this song is like a prayer. He is asking for love, peace and protection. These are not guarantees but hopes. The perfect environment in which the subjunctive mood thrives.
The subjunctive mood is used to talk about desires, doubts, wishes, conjectures, and possibilities; things that are subjective not certain.
Grammar Exercise: Identifying the Subjunctive
Look at the lyrics from A Dios Le Pido. Can you pick out where the subjunctive occurs? Try it.
If you think you’ve selected all the subjunctives, check your answers against the answer sheet.
How’d you do?
Hope you enjoyed today’s song and class.
¡Ojalá¡ que tengan un buen fin de semana! Have a good weekend!
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