Title: Beautiful translations
Type: Translations is what LT is all about. Surely among these thousands of attempts at dispelling the curse of Babel there are a few that struck you as especially beautiful? Maybe it was a nice matching pun? Or a creative way of conveying an idea? Or a new angle that broadened your vision of the song? ...
Description: Translations is what LT is all about. Surely among these thousands of attempts at dispelling the curse of Babel there are a few that struck you as especially beautiful? Maybe it was a nice matching pun? Or a creative way of conveying an idea? Or a new angle that broadened your vision of the song? ...
Tudor Gheorghe - Unde sunt cei care nu mai sunt?
The English version was written by a poet and I suppose it very neatly summarizes the original. This version is more literal and the French, though beautiful, slightly unusual. Yet it sends shivers down my spine. I don't speak Romanian and most likely never will, but this translation allows me to imagine what a native speaker must feel of this poem's strength and beauty.
Bulat Okudzhava - Последний троллейбус | Posledniy trolleybus
I would have thought no translation could ever convey the beautiful, subtle feel of the original. Yet Vera did it, with deceptively simple words and slightly different images. A very fine job indeed.
Georges Brassens - Les patriotes
You can either just read the translation and burst into bitter laughter, or dwell on the erudite footnotes and get a fine idea of the original. The best of both worlds.
Zimovie Zverey - Довоенный билет (Dovoenniy bilet)
From [@Sophia_] - translated from Russian This translation is a special memory for me. The band has difficulty lyrics with puns and obscure metaphors. It was an interesting joint effort of native speakers of both languages, with a rather nice result
Piknik (Russia) - U shamana tri ruki (У шамана три руки)
From [@Sophia_] - translated from Russian The song is one of my Piknik's favourites. I use to sing it in Russian. This translation had me immediately doing the same in English.
Ivan Franko - Kamenyari (Каменярі)
From [@Sophia_] - translated from Russian This is the most famous poem of Ukrainian classic Ivan Franko. The translation is impressive, matching faithfully the style of the original.
Mickey 3D - Sylvie, Jacques et les autres
from [@Ivan U7n] A rather picturesque collaborative translation from a language I have no knowledge of.
Charles Aznavour - Hier Encore
from [@Ivan U7n] Another collaboration from over two years ago. It seems I’m rather a linguistic pervert who likes to put his nose into unfamiliar languages: they include Czech, French, Latvian, Slovene, Ukrainian… and last recently Macedonian was added to the list.
Alisa (Russia) - Nebo slavyan (Небо славян)
from [@Ivan U7n] A singable translation to English I thought was impossible, because the text isn’t simple even for native to fully comprehend. But here comes Nadia and proves me wrong!
Jaromír Nohavica - Dlouhá tenká struna
from [@BlackSea4Ever] Fluid language almost begs music.
Kino - Группа крови (Gruppa krovi)
from [@Vladimir4757] Gruppa Krovi, at least English translation 8 is quite beautiful to me for reimagining how the Russian-Afghani war was to them. Tsoi was anti-war, and this song captures that. I found it to be similar to the American Vietnam War protest songs. The thing that really captures it to me is the line "Blood type - on the sleeve My serial number - on the sleeve," There is no sign of humanity here, just a blood type and a number. No rank, no name, nothing. Furthermore, the subtle references to the USSR add to this complexity, something American songs I don't think captured : "But the star high in the sky is calling me." The star is almost certainly referring to the Red Star (which has been the universal symbol of the Soviet Military. Ever hat badge has a hammer and sickle plastered into a red star. I know this because I own at least one of almost every type of Soviet Military Hat Badge since the 1930's). Honestly, all nine translations could use some polishing, but this one, it just got me in the feels that is for certain. I thought it was beautiful for capturing the meaning of the song and capturing really how bad Afghanistan was for Russia (especially because America was giving weapons to the people Russia was fighting who, as it turns out, would become terrorists. Woops.)
Kari Tapio - Olen suomalainen
From [@Historia] A beautiful Finnish translation of l'Italiano: It's a very successful translation that gained great popularity in Finland, and few Finns know that it's originally Italian.