En brazos de la mujer madura
During the 60’s and 70’s, pop artists would often record their most popular songs in multiple languages. Such was the case with Dalida, an Egypt-born Italian-French singer who became a huge star in France and much of the Middle East throughout the second half of the 20th century.
For this type of artist it was – it still is – common practice to have songs written for them that echo real events from their life. In 1967, at the age of 34, Dalida became pregnant by an 18-year-old Italian student. In 1973, a song was written for her with the title Il venait d’avoir 18 ans, (‘He had just turned 18’).
The song illustrates the subject of the mature woman who falls for a much younger man – a theme that we’ve seen often in films and books (most famously perhaps in The Graduate, a title referenced in the Spanish version of the song), though mostly from the young man’s perspective, as a coming of age story or a tale of initiation. In this song, however, we have a female narrator, and she is telling us her story. Dalida recorded a Spanish version of this mournful ballad with the title Tenía 18 años.
Dalida’s life was haunted by tragedy and her story does not have a happy ending. To know more about this fascinating artist and her song Tenía 18 años, tune in to our latest episode. Feel free to leave some comments and to support my work by subscribing to Qué Pasa Raúl’s free Substack Newsletter. Find the link in the podcast description.
For comments, suggestions or if you are interested in Spanish lessons, I can also be reached out at @byraulg on Instagram.