This flamenco form comes from Granada, home of the stunning palaces and gardens of the Alhambra, and the last of the Moorish kingdoms to fall in 1492 during the reconquest of southern Spain by the Catholic kings. These roots are reflected in the exotic, middle eastern sound of the music and song. The first verse is even in Arabic. It ends in a lively form called tangos.


Letras (lyrics):

Ah ya zain, ah ya zain / Oh beautiful, oh beautiful
Ah ya zain el abideen / Oh beautiful among people
Ya ward / Oh flowers
Ya ward imfatah / Oh flowers blooming
Bain il basateen / In the gardens

Morenita con ojeras / Little dark girl with the bags under her eyes
No le preguntes que tiene / Don’t ask her what she has
Está queriendo de veras / She is truly wanting

Arabi, arabi
Arabi, arabi
Arabi, arabi

Mira que casualidad / Look what a coincidence
Las gitanas canasteras / The wild gypsy women
Y tu de sangre real / And you of royal blood

A mata de romero / Like a sprig of rosemary
Huele tu cuerpo / Your body smells
No hay en la tierra mora / There is not in the moorish land
jasmin más tierno / Sweeter jasmine

Llega la novia, brilla la estella / The bride is arriving, shining like the stars
Rosa temprano, pañuelito blanco / An early rose, a white handkerchief
Las gitanitas bailan a compás / The gypsy girls dance to rhythm
Bailan a compás, a compás de tangos / Dance to the rhythm of tangos