Los Van Van, “La Maquinaria”

“La Maquinaria” is one of the first Cuban Salsa videos I fell in love with. Cuban Salsa at its best, so inclusive: young and old, black and white, beautiful and less beautiful, you and me.

This is still one of my all time favorite Timba salsa songs, certain to bring me to my dance feet.

I found the Spanish lyrics but no English translation, so I have tried to use Google Translation! I have made a few common sense corrections to Google, and there are a couple of places the Google translation is not complete. In the table below the English translation is probably still flat wrong a few places, lyrics and poems can be difficult to translate!

La Maquinaria The Machinary
_ _
¡Atención!, para todos los bailadores del mundo Attention!, for all the dancers of the world
La Maquinaria ya salió The machinery is already on the move *1
¡Ahí na má! This is it! *2
Todo el mundo All the world
_ _
¡Oh, Oh! Te figuraste que ya yo no Oh oh! You thought I wouldn’t do it *3
¡Oh, Oh! Te figuraste que ya yo no Oh oh! You thought I wouldn’t do it
_ _
Somos una maquinaria We are a machinery
Que si nos cambian los aros What if we change the rings
Nos rectifican el cigüeñal We rectify the crankshaft
Nunca se va a parar It’s never going to stop
_ _
¡Oh, Oh! Te figuraste que ya yo no Oh oh! You thought I wouldn’t do it
¡Oh, Oh! Te figuraste que ya yo no Oh oh! You thought I wouldn’t do it
_ _
La maquinaria es un tren The machinery is a train
Una guagua A bus
Una rastra A harrow
Un aeroplano An airplane
Un camión A truck
Una lancha A boat
Un gran cañón A big cannon *4
_ _
¡Oh, Oh! Te figuraste que ya yo no Oh oh! You thought I wouldn’t do it
_ _
Te figuraste You figured
Te lo creíste You believed
Pero, yo creo que te confundiste, varón But, I think you got confused, mate *5
_ _
¡Oh, Oh! Te figuraste que ya yo no Oh oh! You thought I wouldn’t do it
_ _
Tú te creías You believed
Que ya taba cansao That I was already tired
Que taba achantao That taba achantao *6
Pero yo sigo plantao But I keep planting
_ _
¡Oh, Oh! Te figuraste que ya yo o Oh oh! You thought I wouldn’t do it
_ _
Anda ven y súbete Come on and get on
A mi maquinaria To my machinery
Pa que vea Pa you see *7
Y cómo las mujeres se menean And how women wag
Lo digo yo I say so
_ _
¡Oh, Oh! Te figuraste que ya yo no Oh oh! You thought I wouldn’t do it
_ _
Y tú te figuraste And you figured
Que no taba en talla That did not fit in size
Y con mi maquinaria And with my machinery
Sigo en la batalla I’m still in the battle
_ _
Bueno apresúrense que Well hurry up
_ _
¡Atrévete! Dare yourself!
¡Atrévete! Dare yourself!
Súbete en mi maquinaria Get on my machinery
¡Atrévete! Dare yourself!
Pa que bailes con valentía Pa to dance bravely *8
¡Atrévete! Dare yourself!
Pa que nunca te arrepientas Pa you never regret *9
¡Atrévete! Dare yourself!
De bailar con los Van Van To dance with the Van Van
¡de Cuba! from Cuba!
¡Atrévete! Dare yourself!
Cómo How
¡Atrévete! Dare yourself!
Manos arriba Hands up
¡Atrévete!… Dare yourself!…
El hombre es la más perfecta Man is the most perfect
Maquinaria universal Universal machinery
Imagínate si es un Van Van Imagine if it’s a Van Van
Que lleva más de 40 años Who has been more than 40 years
Andando Walking
Inventando Inventing
Creando Creating
Un Sin números de locuras A No Numbers of Follies
El que se nos ha atrevido The one that has dared us
Para poderlo tocar To be able to touch it
_ _
¡Atrévete! Dare yourself!
¡Atrévete! Dare yourself!
¡Atrévete!… Dare yourself!…

*1) Google translation says “Machinery has already left”. I think “The machinery is already on the move” is better.
*2) Google translation says “There na má!” I think “This is it!” is better.
*3) Google translation says “You figured that I did not”. I think “You thought I wouldn’t do it” is better.
*4) Google Translation says “large canyon”. I think a “big cannon” is better.
*5) Google Translation says “male”. I think “mate” or “buddy” is better.
*6) “taba achantao” not translated?
*7) “Pa” not translated?
*8) “Pa” not translated?
*9) “Pa” not translated?

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