This song by Aterciopelados (The Velvet Ones) topped the 1000 most important songs of Colombian rock, but I would class Bolero Falaz more as alternative rock. It’s extremely groovy and bohemian in character and beholds a catchy melody that should titillate the ears of most music enthusiasts. It is said, Bolero Falaz has since the 1990’s represented Colombia in the history of Latin rock. It was the band’s first big hit and soaked the radio waves in México, España, Venezuela, Argentina and Chile. What even makes it more special to me is the band are from my adopted home city – Bogotá.
Wikipedia: Their music fuses rock with a variety of Colombian and Latin American musical traditions. Time magazine wrote that “Aterciopelados’s true skill lies in its ability to take north-of-the-border musical styles…and breathe new life into them, all while giving them a distinctly Colombian sheen.”
Bolero Falaz is a story of disappointment, but with touches of humor that comes the band’s second studio album, El Dorado, which consecrated the sound of the Bogota people with their mixture of traditional rhythms, national folklore and 90’s rock. This album earned them their first gold record, in 1996. Andrea Echeverri and Héctor Buitrago, the duet who formed Aterciopelados, opened one of Bogotá’s only rock clubs, and their relationship is one of Latin rock’s most successful artistic partnerships. They said that nothing was planned when Bolera Falaz was released. There were no communication or marketing strategies; things were just done in the moment.
Below is a loose English translation of the first segment of the song:
Bolero Falaz (Bolero Fallacious)
And it goes…
You search in my pocket proof of another love
Hairs on the lapel, this smile gives me away
Lipstick on the shirt, my alibi is thrashed
I’m in evidence, cheating has its science
I have it up to here
You’re not my other rib
Nor the eight wonder
Damned if I do, Damned if I don’t, don’t even ask
I’m not me anymore, you’ve got me outside of character
The video below is shot on one of the most emblematic routes of Bogotá, ‘the Caracas’ and is a faithful portrait of Bogota in the 90s.