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By Ketty Wong
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Temple University Press, 2012

ISBN 9781439900574

272 Pages

PURL 4.5 Pasillo "Diecisiete aƱos" (17 years [of age])


Media reference: pg. 123   

About this recording

This pasillo was composed by Fausto Galarza in the 1980s, and popularized at the national level by Segundo Rosero, a well-known rocolera singer/songwriter who performs the version in this recording.

This song portrays a man confessing his love to a beautiful seventeen-year-old girl just entering adulthood. He compares her eyes to sunbeams and asks God to bless her life. Despite its gentle lyrics, this pasillo is considered a rocolera song and has not entered the música nacional anthology.

As a working-class pasillo, “Diecisiete años” shows musical fea­tures that are reminiscent of indigenous music, such as pentatonic melodic contours and the use of high-pitched timbres in the instrumentation, which includes guitar, requinto, electric bass, and keyboards.


Yo vivía triste, sumido entre sombras

Sin pensar siquiera que existe la vida

Pero me ha llegado a mí este momento

Y a la edad que tengo me nace un amor.


Tiene en su mirada los rayos del sol

Y en su linda boca un lindo candor

Tiene en su mirada, tiene en su boquita un soplo de vida,

Tiene lo que nadie tiene en esta vida para ser bonita.

Diecisiete años cruzan por su vida y está en su delirio

Yo beso sus labios candorosa y linda, que Dios la bendiga.


I lived sad, immersed in shadows

Without even thinking that life exists.

But this moment has come to me

And at my age a love is born.


She has in her glance the sun’s rays

And in her beautiful mouth a beautiful innocence.

She has in her glance, she has in her little mouth a puff of life,

She has what nobody in this life has to be pretty.

Seventeen years crisscross her life, and she is full of passion

I kiss her lips, candid and beautiful, may God bless her.