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de sa e chulo

De sa e chulo is a song from the Rhodope mountains of Bulgaria. Rhodope music is known for its intricate ornamentation, especially in solo singing. The Rhodope mountains are 'small and round' at least compared to some other ranges in the wider Balkans region. Bulgarian singers say people from the Rhodope's are more shy and delicate, like the mountains, and that's why their singing sounds the way it does. Another reason for this stylistic difference could originate in the region's long term occupation by the Ottomon Empire, which forcibly converted its subjects to Islam during its reign. In Islam, at least during Ottomon rule, women were not allowed to sing, but since singing was such a huge part of culture in the area, women adapted to sing quietly and secretly behind closed doors in their homes. Thus, the songs that came out of the 500-year Ottomon reign developed a more inward and lyrical nature. This song, which would have been originally sung as a solo, is an adaptation of an arrangement by the Bulgarka Quartet, a professional group of Bulgarian women singers.

De sa e chulo - Rhodope Song
Melody - De sa e chulo
Low Line - De sa e chulo
Middle Line - De sa e chulo

lyrics and translation

De sa e chulo videlo mari,

Chorna zemya bez voda.


Na edno mesto imashe mari,

I nego moma chuvashe.


Cheshka za alton davashe mari,

рomina ludo i mlado.


Toi na moma na dumashe mari,

рodai mi mome voditsa.


Podai mi mome voditsa mari,

(sas tvoi)  na desna rŭchitsa.


Che sam  te voda zazhadnel mari,

I sam za tebe zablagnel.

Maybe you heard or saw,

That there was black earth without water.


But at one place there was (water),

And that place was run by a young girl.


She sold one cup for an 'alton'

To a passing young man.


He said to the girl:

Give me, girl, water.


Give me, girl, water

In your right hand.


I am very thirsty,

I am falling in love with you.

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