Agua Florida (Florida Water)

Lyrics: Fernán Silva Valdés
Translation: Felipe & Ayano
Music: Ramón Collazo 1928
Recorded by Angel D'Agostino with Angel Vargas in 1941

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Agua florida,
vos eras criolla.

(Instrumental)

Te usaban las pobres violetas del fango
de peinados lisos, como agua'e laguna,
cuando se bailaba alegrando el tango
con un taconeo y una media luna.

Perfume del tiempo taura que pasó,
pues todo en la vida ha de ser así,
cuando las percantas mentían que no
mientras las enaguas decían que sí.

Chinas sencillas y querendonas,
que al son de las acordeonas bailaban un milongón.
Chinas que oliendo a agua florida
se metían en la vida a punta de corazón.

(Instrumental)

(Unsung part)
De cuando una viola tocaba de prima
y otras las cuarteaban dando a las bordonas,
y un ramo de taitas era cada esquina
y la vida era linda y guapetona.

Vos eras del tiempo del gacho ladeao,
de la mina airosa anclada al bulín,
del lazo en el pelo, del percal floreao
y de la academia y el peringundín.

Chinas que oliendo a agua florida
se metían en la vida a punta de corazón.

Agua florida vos eras criolla.

English

Florida water, you were creole.

(Instrumental)

They wore you, the poor street girls
with straight hair like water from the lake,
when they used to dance tango
spicing it up with a heel tap and a half turn.

Scent of a brave time that passed,
for all in life must be like this,
when the women used to lie saying “no”
while the petticoats said “yes”.

Simple and affectionate native girls,
who danced a milongon to the music of the accordion.
Native girls who smelling like Florida Water
they went into life with all their heart.

(Instrumental)

(Unsung part)
From when a guitar played the first voice
and others would accompany her playing the low strings,
and a bunch of brave men were in each corner
and life was beautiful and good looking.

You were from the time of the slanted hat,
of the resolute girl staying at home,
of the bow in the hair, of the flower print percale
and of the dance academy and the brothel.

Native girls who smelling like Florida Water
went into life with all their heart.

Florida water, you were creole.

Note: The author is from Montevideo, Uruguay. Florida Water was a brand of affordable perfume popular in the working class people of that time.