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Origins: No Nos Moveran (We Shall Not Be Moved)

DigiTrad:
WE SHALL NOT BE MOVED
WE SHALL NOT BE MOVED (2)


Related threads:
Lyr Req: NO NOS MOVERON (4)
Tune Req: I Shall Not Be Moved (10)
Lyr Req: We Shall Not Be Moved (23)
Lyr Req: We Shall Not Be Moved (5)


GUEST,George Coventry 14 Jul 00 - 08:22 PM
Joe Offer 14 Jul 00 - 09:52 PM
Joe Offer 15 Jul 00 - 04:43 AM
GUEST,George Coventry 15 Jul 00 - 11:43 AM
Joe Offer 15 Jul 00 - 03:41 PM
GUEST,George Coventry 15 Jul 00 - 04:10 PM
Joe Offer 15 Jul 00 - 04:14 PM
Little Hawk 15 Jul 00 - 04:31 PM
katlaughing 15 Jul 00 - 05:28 PM
Little Hawk 15 Jul 00 - 05:35 PM
GUEST 15 Jul 00 - 08:25 PM
Little Hawk 15 Jul 00 - 10:33 PM
Escamillo 16 Jul 00 - 02:41 AM
Joe Offer 17 Jul 00 - 12:45 AM
Escamillo 17 Jul 00 - 04:17 AM
McGrath of Harlow 19 Jul 00 - 03:53 PM
WyoWoman 20 Jul 00 - 02:13 AM
Joe Offer 24 Jul 00 - 03:46 AM
GUEST,Fedele (from university) 24 Jul 00 - 09:22 AM
GUEST,Fedele again 24 Jul 00 - 09:23 AM
Joe Offer 24 Jul 00 - 02:23 PM
GUEST,Fedele 25 Jul 00 - 07:59 AM
Escamillo 28 Jul 00 - 01:47 AM
Joe Offer 28 Jul 00 - 02:10 AM
Escamillo 28 Jul 00 - 02:36 AM
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Subject: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: GUEST,George Coventry
Date: 14 Jul 00 - 08:22 PM

I'm looking for the Spanish lyrics to the song "No Nos Moveran". As far as I know the song originated in Spain as an anthem of the Republican forces during the Spanish Civil War in the late 30's. It then became a favourite of leftists, activists, and unions all over the place, and was translated into English as "We Shall Not Be Moved". Joan Baez raised quite a furor in Spain back in the 80's, I think it was, when she sang it there in a series of concerts. The Franco government had long suppressed the song, and people were very excited to hear it sung there again. Most were pleased...some were incensed...depending on their political bent. I have no idea how this chat line business works, so please email me the lyrics if you can. Gracias!


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Subject: ADD: No Nos Moveran in Spanish ^^
From: Joe Offer
Date: 14 Jul 00 - 09:52 PM

Hi - here are some of the verses from the Rise Up Singing songbook. I hadn't heard about a connection with the Spanish Civil War - I think that warrants further research, but I'm off to sing this evening. I understand the song comes from a black spiritual, "I Shall Not Be Moved." I assumed it has origins in the United States. This site (click) agrees with your contention that Franco had banned the song in Spain.
-Joe Offer-

WE SHALL NOT BE MOVED
Chorus
We shall not, we shall not be moved (2x)
Just like a tree that's planted by the water,
We shall not be moved.


1. The union is behind us, we shall not be moved.
The union is behind us, we shall not be moved.
Just like a tree that's planted by the water,
We shall not be moved.

2. We're fighting for our freedom, we shall not be moved.
We're fighting for our freedom, we shall not be moved.
Just like a tree that's planted by the water,
We shall not be moved.

3. We're fighting for our children, we shall not be moved.

4. We'll build a mighty union, we shall not be moved.

5. _____________ is our leader, we shall not be moved.

Source: Edith Fowke & Joe Glazer: Songs of Work and Protest, 1960. Fowke & Glazer say this version was first sung in 1931 by members of the West Virginia Miner's Union, led by Frank Keeney. The song was a favorite on pickets lines because it was easy to add dozens of verses telling the story of any perticular strike.
Slightly different verses are found in Carry It On by Pete Seeger and Bob Reiser, 1985. Seeger and Reiser say the song was adapted from the gospel song "I Shall Not be Moved" by African-American textile workers in North Carolina during the 1920's. Other verses were added by the U.S. Civil Rights movement in the 1960's.

NO NOS MOVERAN

No, no, no nos moveran (2x)
Como el arbol firme junto al rio,
No nos moveran.

1. Y_el que no crea que_haga la prueba, no, nos moveran...
2. Unidos en la lucha, no, nos moveran...
4. Unidos en sindicatos...
5. Construyendo el socialismo...
6. Y con golpe de estado....

[These Spanish verses (No Nos Moveran) are attributed to a Salvadoran union organizer who fled the death squads to take sanctuary in the United States - according to the Rise Up Singing songbook.]

I didn't find background information about the Spanish lyrics that really satisfied me.
-Joe Offer-^^


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Subject: ADD: Fuertes Somos Ya ^^
From: Joe Offer
Date: 15 Jul 00 - 04:43 AM

Additional Spanish version from Rise Up Singing, which says this version came from the United Farmworkers, who organized U.S. farmworkers (chiefly in California) in the late 1960's and the 1970's.

FUERTES SOMOS YA

Chorus
Fuertes, fuertes, fuertes somos ya.
Fuertes, fuertes, fuertes somos ya.
Como_un arbol firme junto al rio,
Fuertes somos ya.


1. Luchamos por librarnos, fuertes somos ya....

2. Luchamos por los hijos.



Don't know if I buy this - I always thought "No Nos Moveran" came from the United Farmworkers.
Does anybody have reference material that tells the story of the Spanish lyrics? Whatever the case, I found nothing to link the song to the Spanish Civil War, although I'm sure the song was known by many Americans who fought in that war. Franco, a Fascist, would certainly want to ban "No Nost Moveran,"even if it wasn't sung widely in Spain.
The mystery remains. Anybody got the scoop?
-Joe Offer-^^


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: GUEST,George Coventry
Date: 15 Jul 00 - 11:43 AM

Here's some more info on "No Nos Moveran". Joan Baez had refused to play in Spain as long as the Franco regime was in power. In 1977, one year after Franco's death, things were changing in Spain, and she went there to play for the first time, attracting a lot of attention from the Spanish press and public (she did have a lot of Spanish fans who were familiar with her records). As Joan always did sing a good number of Spanish language songs, it was quite easy for her to put together a song list appropriate for her audience. The Franco government had earlier censored 2 songs off her Spanish language album "Gracias a la Vida", before allowing it to be sold in Spain. One of those was "No Nos Moveran". Since Franco was now kaput, Joan naturally decided to sing the song. She chose to do it on her initial appearance in Spain which was on their most popular evening TV entertainment show, apparently watched by virtually everyone in the country. She dedicated the song to La Pasionaria, a famous female revolutionary fighter who led the Spanish Republican forces in the defense of Madrid against the Fascist forces led by Franco with the help of Hitler and Mussolini. There was no leftist hero in Spain more notorious than La Pasionaria (which means "the impassioned one"...more or less). Well, it got a huge reaction. The audience was intially stunned, then elated, and it had a profound effect throughout Spain, drawing a great deal of attention to her tour. The whole tour in fact raised a whirlwind of controversy, utterly false rumours ranging from the extraordinary to the laughable, veiled threats from rich fascists in expensive cars, confrontations with the press, you name it. Read Joan's book "And A Voice To Sing With" pages 254-263 for the complete account. A fascinating section in a truly great book.

I am just about absolutely positive that this song originated in Spain as a song of the Spanish Republican forces. That would have been in the period 1936-1938 approximately, which predates any of the suggested points of American origin in this discussion. It was then adopted by every leftist group imaginable in every common language group, appearing in numerous English versions. The English language versions tend to be a bit awkward sounding in comparison to the original Spanish words.

I lived in the USA from age 10 to 20, during the 60's, but I'm a Canadian, now back in Canada. One thing I noticed during my stay in New York State is that Americans are generally under the impression that EVERYTHING (except maybe Communism) originated in the USA. It's not their fault, that's just what their schools and media tell them from the time they are toddlers. Well, I think that in the case of "No Nos Moveran", that is not so...but I can't say for absolutely certain sure...it's just my best guess.

Anyway, thanks for the info, Joe, you have supplied the missing line I was looking for, and I now have some vague understanding of how this "thread" system or whatever you call it works. Sort of...


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: Joe Offer
Date: 15 Jul 00 - 03:41 PM

Ah, George, you make a pretty good argument, but I think you draw it a bit too far. The fact that I can't find any credible-sounding information about the Spanish version of the song makes me think that you may well be right that it started in the Spanish Civil War. It appears quite clear, however, that the original song was a Black spiritual from the U.S. from the first half of the 19th century.

I haven't found the black gospel song called "I Shall Not Be Moved," but Pete Seeger says it came from the period before the U.S. Civil War, so that dates it back before 1860. Fowke (a Canadian) & Glazer, and Seeger are both pretty credible musicologists, and both books say the song is derived from the gospel song, and that it arose in the U.S. labor movement in the 1920's and 1930's. Remember that the U.S. labor movement was closely tied with international socialism and communism, so a workable activist song like this would be likely to spread like wildfire all over the world.

Certainly, the verses can be clumsy at times - they were made up on the spur of the moment during strikes and rallies - "We Shall Not Be Moved" is the ultimate "zipper" song, a simple melody that adapts itself well to an endless variety of one-line lyrics.
There are still a lot of elements missing in this quest, and it might be fun to pursue them. I'd like to know which verses were commonly used by the United Farmworkers, since there seem to be two fairly distinct Spanish versions. I'd also like to see the lyrics to this elusive Black spiritual that's supposed to be the basis of this song.

And, George, be careful about accusing us Americans of assuming everything starts with us. Our own music is certainly what we know best and what we speak of first - that's natural. We have oceans that make it difficult for us to visit other countries, so it IS difficult for us to have an international perspective. However, we in the U.S. folk music community are well aware of the African and European roots of all of our music - and we have great respect for those roots.

I suppose I could go on and comment about all the great Spanish music from Spanish composers like Bizet and Ravel and Tchaikovsky and Chabrier and Rimsky-Korsakov, but that would be a cheap shot. [Well, I guess it is hard to avoid the temptation to get off a cheap shot at times...]

Anyhow, I found the Baez chapter called "No Nos Moveran," and I'm off to read it. I'll also fire off an e-mail to a friend who worked with the United Farmworkers. All the best to you, George.

Can anybody else shed some light on the origins of the various versions of this song?

-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: GUEST,George Coventry
Date: 15 Jul 00 - 04:10 PM

Hey Joe, wheah you goin' with that gun in yer...no wait...that's the wrong song! Good stuff, Joe, your comments are most interesting. No Nos Moveran may indeed derive from that black gospel song that Pete Seeger tracked down. Excuse the sniping at American assumptions of whatever...it's a Canadian habit to do that, I'm afraid. We, like the Mexicans, get a little nervous living next door to the superpower. Then too, we get these American tourists who come up here in August (when it's hot as hell) and are looking to go skiing and think that everyone speaks French here, and it gives a kind of false impression...of course there are a few dimwits in any given population.

We just had the 40th Mariposa Folk Festival here in Orillia (a beautiful town), and was it ever a great folk festival! Gordon Lightfoot (who is originally from Orillia) did the penultimate set, which was the perfect climax to a wonderful show. I got to play twice myself on Saturday, as I am a folksinger too.

Best wishes to you also,

George


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: Joe Offer
Date: 15 Jul 00 - 04:14 PM

George, I hope you see this - I started to type it, and then my computer locked up. Anyhow, Click on this link to get to a previous thread we have on the gospel roots of labor and civil rights songs. That thread links to the original "I Shall Not Be Moved," which is in our database.
But I'm still not satisfied with the information I have on the origins of the Spanish version. Nice talkin' with ya.
-Joe Offer-

By the way, my family comes from both sides of the Detroit River, and I'm quite proud of my French-Candadian roots. My Canadian ancestors did speak French.


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: Little Hawk
Date: 15 Jul 00 - 04:31 PM

Hey Joe,

Me again. I just joined Mudcat Cafe and am going under the name "Little Hawk", which goes way back with me. I like the "Browder is our leader, he must be removed" Ha Ha! We could do this version for Mike Harris, the current premier of Ontario (our version of a state governor). Mike Harris is universally despised by the arts community here, as well as by liberals of every stripe. "Harris is a scoundrel, he must be removed..." I can just hear it now. Due to his cutbacks in social services of every kind we now have all kinds of social problems we never used to have, and the rich are doing better than they ever have. This is fertile ground for protest songs, needless to say.

Cheers,

George (Little Hawk)


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: katlaughing
Date: 15 Jul 00 - 05:28 PM

Little Hawk, welcome to the Mudcat Cafe. You sure jump in with both feet and this is an incredibly interesting thread. Thank to you and Joe for the discussion!

If you put Rick Fielding's name in the thread search box and set the time filter back to a few days, you will find a thread on Mudcatter Rick Fielding, of Toronto, opening for Gordon Lightfoot, at Mariposa. We also have another Mucatter, Sophocleese, who was there as a storyteller. We also have many other Canadian members. If you go to the Quick Links, drop down the menu and choose Mudcat Resources, the Mudcat Locator, you will see several listed by region. For some fun reading about the US-Canadian Border, check out the thread titled, BS:Ain't Nobody Here But Us Chickens.

I went looking for the lyrics to this song in Spanish, before I come in here and saw that you and Joe had pretty much sewn them up, BUT, this fellow, click here please, may know more and also has a ton of links to other Spanish lyrics/info sites.

All the best,

katlaughing


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: Little Hawk
Date: 15 Jul 00 - 05:35 PM

Hello katlaughing, Thanks! This is great. I will shortly be signing off, and then going on a Caribbean trip for a week, so you will not be hearing from me for a while...but I'll be back. No one loves folk music more than I do.

Cheers,

Little Hawk


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: GUEST
Date: 15 Jul 00 - 08:25 PM

There are many people here who do


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: Little Hawk
Date: 15 Jul 00 - 10:33 PM

No, my love. There may be many who love it as much as I do, but none who love it more than I do. You can say otherwise as you wish, but you don't know me.


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: Escamillo
Date: 16 Jul 00 - 02:41 AM

I don´t know the replies, but have requested help to a large cultural centre of the socialist movement in Spain (lafactoriaweb.com.es) who published the lyrics from many songs originated in the Civil War, though not this one. I hope they would be able to clarify the point and provide the full lyrics.
Prepare to raise your left fist.
Un abrazo - Andrés


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: Joe Offer
Date: 17 Jul 00 - 12:45 AM

Ahhhh! The click that refreshes!!!

I'm still looking for information about the beginnings of the two Spanish versions of the song. For that matter, a translation would be terrific. And is it "Como_un arbol firma junto al rio" or "Como_un arbol firme junto al rio."
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish ^^
From: Escamillo
Date: 17 Jul 00 - 04:17 AM

It is "Como un árbol firme junto al río."
The other verses are ok. Although those verses are not complete, this translation may help:
No, no, no nos moveran (2x) / No, they won't move us
Como el arbol firme junto al rio, /as the firm tree by the river
No nos moveran. /they won't move us

1. Y_el que no crea que_haga la prueba, no, nos moveran... / and those who don't beleive, let them try
2. Unidos en la lucha, no, nos moveran... / united in battle
4. Unidos en sindicatos... / together in labor unions
5. Construyendo el socialismo... / building the socialism
6. Y con golpe de estado.... / with a xxx*
* Golpe de estado is a composed expression meaning a coup or revolution that rapidly changes government, generally by military means. (Those we suffered so many times in Latin America)
Chorus Fuertes, fuertes, fuertes somos ya. /Strong, strong we already are
Fuertes, fuertes, fuertes somos ya.
Como_un arbol firma junto al rio, / as a firm tree by the river,
Fuertes somos ya. / strong we already are

1. Luchamos por librarnos, fuertes somos ya.... / we fight for freedom, strong we already are

2. Luchamos por los hijos. / We fight for our children

Un abrazo (this time Un abrazo Libertario) :) - Andrés

^^


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 19 Jul 00 - 03:53 PM

Just in case people missed this one, what with all the other things going on, this needs refreshing. This refreshing.


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: WyoWoman
Date: 20 Jul 00 - 02:13 AM

Muy interesante. I was just listening to the Joan Baez CD today, wondering what exactly those words were saying (as I was trying to learn "Gracias a la Vida," thanks to another thread.)

I'll check back on this one, and thanks for the discussion.

Best, WyoWoman


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: Joe Offer
Date: 24 Jul 00 - 03:46 AM

I'm still looking for background information on the two Spanish versions of this song ("No Nos Moveran" and "Fuertes Somos Ya") - where did they come from and when? Anybody here with UFW or Latino ties who can tell us their history?
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: GUEST,Fedele (from university)
Date: 24 Jul 00 - 09:22 AM

Well, I got "We Shall Not Be Moved" sung by Barbara Dane (don't know much about this gal), and the book that goes with the CD says it's originally an American spiritual.

As far as I remember, she sings:
We fight for our freedom, We shall not be moved...
We fight for higher wages, We shall not be moved...
And if they will not give them, They shall be removed
Just like a tree that's floating on the water, They shall be removed
Nixon is a bastard, He shall be removed
Just like a SHIT (?) that's floating on the water, ...

And now, for our Spanish speaking comrades:
Fuertes fuertes fuertes somos ya...
Viva Fidel Castro, fuertes somos ya,
Viva Che Guevara, fuertes somos ya...
Well, pretending to tell you something about an American song here from Italy is a bit stupid, but yes, it sounds like it's American. Aren't you all sure that "No nos moveran" is not ANOTHER TUNE?
Or maybe Americans introduced it in Spain with the International Brigades. It's said that "Bandiera Rossa" is popular everywhere due to Italians in the International Brigades.


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: GUEST,Fedele again
Date: 24 Jul 00 - 09:23 AM

(Sorry, I always forget to put line breaks...)


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: Joe Offer
Date: 24 Jul 00 - 02:23 PM

Hi, Fedele - I added the line breaks in your post. The additional verses are very helpful. Do the album notes say anything about where Barbara Dane got the verses? You may wish to Click here for the limited information that the All-Music Guide has on Barbara Dane.
"No Nos Moveran" is definitely the same song and the same tune- just different verses, and I'm still trying to find out which groups were the source of those Spanish lyrics.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: GUEST,Fedele
Date: 25 Jul 00 - 07:59 AM

The book just says it's sung at a workers' gathering and that many of the workers there were Latinos. The verses look as "improvised" (don't know what's the word in English: I mean, they are invented at the moment or so).


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: Escamillo
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 01:47 AM

This is the reply from La Factoría, confirming that the song was originated in USA and adapted in Spain. Who made the adaptation ? Still an enigma.
Un abrazo libertario - Andrés
-------------------------------------------------------

Colomers, 28 de julio de 2000.

La canción "No nos moverán" es origunaria del movimiento musical estadounidense. En España se adaptó. Pero, como no es española. Además, no es una de las canciones originales de nuestra guerra civil.

Espero haberle aclarado el tema.
Carles Navales,
Director.

"La factoría", revista cuatrimestral.
Tel. +34 972 768 134.
La Rectoria - 17144 Colomers (Spain).
http//:www.lafactoriaweb.com


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: Joe Offer
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 02:10 AM

My friend who worked with the United Farm Workers said that "No Nos Moveran" was definitely the favored version of the song. "Fuertes Somos Ya" was secondary.
-Joe Offer-
Andrés, I think I understand everything your correspondent said, but could you give us a translation? Thanks.


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Subject: RE: Need lyrics to No Nos Moveran in Spanish
From: Escamillo
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 02:36 AM

Of course, Joe.
La canción "No nos moverán" es originaria del movimiento musical estadounidense. En España se adaptó. Pero, no es española. Además, no es una de las canciones originales de nuestra guerra civil.

Espero haberle aclarado el tema.

The song "No nos moverán" was originated in the USA musical movement. It was adapted in Spain, but it is not Spanish. Besides, it is not one of the original songs of our Civil War.
I hope to have clarified the subject for you.


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