Today on the train, Jorge Drexler’s song “Toíto cái lo traigo andao” came on my iPod, and suddenly I was a character from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, about to fall for an ass-headed man. By which I mean, for three minutes, I was in love with everyone around me. First, there was the girl sitting next to me. I couldn’t get a good look at her without some sort of confrontation ensuing, but I made sly peripheral glances and admired the gold headband set in her black hair. Standing directly in front of me was a young Asian man, smartly dressed except for his scuffed black shoes. I was enamored of the scuffs especially. The man with the Band-Aids was more difficult, but he looked back at me as if he might be in love with someone himself, and that (of course) is impossible to resist. Proceed with caution, but do proceed to Drexler’s album Cara B. I haven’t the foggiest idea if the songs are romantic because I don’t speak Spanish, but they are certainly infectious.
You may have heard of Drexler in 2004 when he became the first Uruguayan to win an Academy Award. He won for his song “Al Otro Lado del Río,” which appeared in The Motorcycle Diaries. Rumor has it that he was supposed to perform the song at the awards ceremony, but was replaced with Antonio Banderas and Carlos Santana. Qué tonto!
Bio: Erica Wright is the poetry editor at Guernica. Her “interview with John Ashbery”:https://www.guernicamag.com/interviews/507/houses_at_night_1/, “Houses at Night,” appeared in Guernica’s February 2008 issue. Read her last recommendation “here”:https://www.guernicamag.com/blog/1430/rec_room_erica_wright_la_femme/.