Video of the week: Sólo Dios
La paz del alma la regala sólo Dios
Songs about retribution always get to me. Whether the retribution comes at the hand of the original victim or from a divine power, the concept of making the other person feel pain is a sweet one. This belief in retribution is one of the cores of rancheras. Rather than having a few songs about retribution, there are thousands of this type of songs, each one different in the method of retribution.
“Sólo Dios” is one of my favorite rancheras, especially this version with Jorge Negrete. This song was composed by Chucho Monge, who also wrote “La feria de las flores” and 175 other songs, according to the Sociedad de Autores y Compositores de Música. Jorge Negrete is also one of my favorite singers (none of this “Pedro Infante is a better singer” tripe; I don’t like Infante’s voice at all) and his voice, with its quiver and strength that his opera training developed, complete this song.
This song is perfect for Negrete’s somewhat arrogant voice and personality. “Sólo Dios” is sung by someone who suffered at the hands of someone. Rather than wishing hell on earth, the singer leaves it all to God. The ambiguity in the wishes of the singer to cause suffering on the other person is also a form of retribution. The singer no longer cares enough for the other person to wish pain on the other person; he simply does not care what happens to the other person. Torturous inaction is a great method of inflicting pain on another person.
One thing I’ve always wondered is how much these songs served to impose modes of conduct on other people. It’s not something that I have the time to go into right now, Just keep in mind que la paz del alma la regala sólo Dios.