“Above, The Burning Sun” /Amigo’s NEW English lyrics for the Violeta Parra classic

Above, The Burning Sun (Arriba quemando el sol)

Music and original Spanish Lyrics: Violeta Parra/English Lyrics: Cristian Amigo – Lyric ballad in 3 sections/7 stanzas



When I came to New York city with ten dollars in my hand

Bought some bread to fill my stomach

Caught the rain to wash my hair

Hoped that my fine education

Would help me find a job there

And above, the burning sun


You can’t do much with ten dollars

But I felt a millionaire

Among homeless children, drunkards and old people who lived there

Under scaffolds under bridges

Under boxes, underwear

And above, the burning sun



When I sleep here on the subway

In the last car of the train

Folks don’t want to be too near me

They treat me with clear disdain

Like I’s stupid or I’s lazy, certifiably insane

And above, the burning sun


I have seen ten million faces

But for few I got blank stares

Their eyes go on past or through me

It’s as if I wasn’t there

When I play a Bach sonata

No one listens

No one cares

And above, the burning sun


Maybe I’m too tired or crazy

Cause I can’t pretend to care

’bout the market, or celebrities, success, career, affairs.

You could say that I’ve gone fishing

Though my body remains here

And above, the burning sun



I had just come to the city

When the towers burned and fell

When four thousand  souls departed

I awoke as from a spell

A man dressed up like a pirate

Said well what did you expect?

And above, the burning sun


When I get out if this city

I will be an older man

I’ll be leaving with four dollars

That’s six less than when I came

I have played and talked with princes, men of god, and sons of Sam

And above the burning sun


About Cristian Amigo

NYC blues-jazz guitarist/composer/producer/educator/visual artist/papa. Composer-In-Residence @ INTAR Latino Theatre (NYC).
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