Tales From Copyright Infringement

One of the best parts of 2010 coming to a close, is that chances of  Swinghouse techno “anthem” We No Speak Americano streaming through the airwaves are fewer and far betweener.  

Based on the 1956 song Tu vuò fà l’americano by Italian singer Renato Carosone, the jam made many a hipster channel their inner Fellini and get all neo-realist on the dancefloor, which was cool and all—for like the first three months. Mainstream Top 40 radio followed and God knows how many rotations in Wichita later, the track soon became this generation’s Mambo No. 5

And while the gift that keeps on giving has spun many an “homage” worldwide, the appropriation it has been subject to in Mexico is second to none. From a tale of star-crossed lovers divided by opposite sides of the border, to a critique on American imperialism (complete with an Ed Hardy shout-out) which rings close to the song’s original intention,  We No Speak is the current darling of the banda scene. 

Among all the covers however, one definitely sticks out: that of Los Pelapapas de Nova York (The Nova York Potato Peelers’) Pan Americano (American Bread). Egged on by the chorus’ Spanish homophone, the song tells the tale of a recently deported man who results to selling bread from a  cart to make a living. Longing for his Yankee past, he gets flustered when he’s asked for Mexican bread as he prefers to sell the American kind and beyond offended when he’s paid in pesos, to the point that he gives children poisoned rolls capable of inducing seizures, making teeth fall off and heads balloon up like Zeppelins.

Now, I’m not saying it’s a blatant case of Copyright infringement, as the band is signed to Disa Records—a division of Universal Music Mexico (in other words, don’t sue me bro), but it still felt fitting to include it in this category.

Take a look at the masterpiece bellow. Spielberg, eat your concha out.

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