Festive Left Friday Blogging: Here comes Chente!

A famous Mexican folk singer was in Venezuela yesterday, and guess who he met? Contrainjerencia has the story:

The president of Venezuela, Hugo Chávez, awarded the Order of the Liberator to the Mexican singer, Vicente Fernández, today during a private meeting which took place in Miraflores Palace, Caracas.

Vicente Fernández, 72 years old, visited Venezuela along with two of his children during a farewell concert tour capping a more than 40-year career spanning the globe.

“He is a titan of the greatest depth among our peoples, not only the Mexican people, but the Venezuelan as well, and our Latin America, and the world,” said Chávez of Fernández. The leader added that “Vicente Fernández was already singing in Mexico as soon as he was born”.

Chávez also sang a few bars from the song, “Jalisco no te rajes”. He added that their “chat was friendly”, and that Fernández “brought down the house” in the presidential palace.

“Good thing he’s a counter-earthquake,” joked Chávez.

The president has often expressed his love of Mexican music, and has sung Fernández’s songs on various public occasions. He paid tribute to the UNESCO decision to recognize Mexican mariachi music as an “immaterial patrimony of humanity” during a ceremony that took place in the Mexican city of Guadalajara.

Translation mine.

This one’s especially apropos for me right now, as there’s a chapter by the same title as this blog entry in Lupita Domínguez’s book, which I translated. Of course the “Chente” in the chapter isn’t the real one, but a very big fan of his, who always has the DJs at the table-dance clubs play a Chente song when he arrives. Like the real Chente, he’s from Jalisco; unlike him, he’s got a nasty secret that only a few of the dancers know. And let’s just say that in a land of macho men, it’s the kind of thing that you’ll pay big pesos to keep quiet. Which would have been hard for me to do, since I laughed out loud the whole time I was translating his story. I suspect Chavecito would get a chuckle out of it, too.

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