“La Bamba” (Ritchie Valens)

Some say the song itself can be traced back to the conquest, and, further, to Africa, and that there are 500 or so verses which can be sung to it. Cornucopia. In this distillation, the “captain” says to his dance partner: for you, I will act as a “sailor,” and divest myself of power. After all, in order to dance “la bamba” (which references a certain swinging, swaying, wobbling), there can be no leader and follower, as in formal dance. The master/slave dialectic, therefore, does not apply.  Instead, one needs a certain grace (“de gracia”) and a little something else (“y otra cosita”). Excessiveness, below or before sovereignty/subjecthood.


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