We made a friend here who came from a little town in Mexico where everybody went around on burros and they had a loudspeaker in the center of the village for people to kind of use as an open-mic. He said there was an old lady who would make tamales or posole and announce it for the neighbors. He courted his wife by singing mariachi for her. As I type this, he is on life support in the hospital and not expected to survive the next few hours, and I’ve got sad Mexican music on my mind. When I taught Spanish today, I brought this song to them and told them I was feeling pretty blue about this friend and the situation, and so I decided we would sing together. They are sixth graders, and we had a good time singing (aka laughing through the whole thing as they stumbled over the lyrics and then swayed heavily to the chorus and generally just did it to humor me), and it made me feel a little happier.
Here is Lola Beltrán singing Cielito Lindo. It’s not really a sad song, but the melody has always been kind of whistful and is going with my mood. The lyrics are essentially like a lullaby or maybe a love song (which the kids also laughed at).