Young Mérida-born music artist Belle Delouisse has taken a feminist anthem and brought it home.
Delouisse’s version of Vivir Quintana’s “Canción sin miedo” (“Song Without Fear”) is “love letter dedicated to women living in the Yucatan Peninsula.”
The original “Canción sin miedo” had its moment during 2020’s Latin American protests against femicide and abortion laws and became the unofficial song of the movement.
“We sing without fear, we ask for justice, we shout for each disappeared,” the lyrics declare, in English.
For her compatriots in Yucatán, Delouisse added:
“For all the compas marching in Montejo. For all the women fighting in the Port. For the mestizos of the north and south. For all the mothers fighting in Tahdziú. We sing without fear, we ask for justice.”
“I’m Jessica, I’m Silvia and I’m Fernanda. I’m Norma, I’m Maria and I’m Ana.”
In this way, she makes visible the cases of women who have been victims of gender violence in Yucatán.
She acknowledged to local media that Vivir Quintana’s lyrics are already strong and relate to all women. But she still felt it was important to regionalize the lyrics.
“The song, since I heard it, made me wonder about the cases of femicides that have occurred throughout Yucatán,” she said in La Jornada Maya, “those that we have known about Mérida and I wonder about all those cases in the municipalities that we do not know about.”
Despite feeling lucky living in one of the safest states in the country, this does not prevent her from recognizing that data still indicate violence against women.
“In the song, they mention the cities where conflicts are greatest, but I wanted to emphasize that in Yucatán they also happen. The modification is not done just because, there was a process of meditation and study,” he added.
To Delouisse’s delight, Vivir shared the video on her networks and also congratulated her, noting how artfully part of it was translated into Mayan.
“Although it was not possible to make an exact translation for the melody, an interpretation was made with the help of Henry Tun Poot,” she said.
Other creative collaborators included Mariana Piñeyro, Fernando DeEva and Luis Escalera.
The young, self-described Afro-Mexican performer started singing at 15 and has participated in cultural events in Mérida and Campeche, but considers this to be the first formal project.
She has taken classes with the Yucatecan troubadour Alfredo Gamboa Pixan, guitar classes at the State Center of Fine Arts and studied at the Center for Jazz Studies in Xalapa, Veracruz.