The Beatles, Alicia Keys, Lauren Hill, Prima J and Shontelle. What do all these singers have in common? They have each had their songs covered in Spanish. That’s right these number hits that rocked the world between the years of 1965 to as recently as 201o have each had their day in the Spanish world of music.
Yesterday-The Beatles (1965)
Originally written by the legend himself, Paul McCartney, “Yesterday” was a part of the bands 10th North American studio album Help! Telling the story of a man who is dealing with a broken heart, this song is accompanied by a string quartet playing a very light, melancholy melody.
An interesting fact about this song, “Yesterday” is the first official recording by the Beatles that was heavily dependent on the vocals of just one of the members. That means that every song before “Yesterday” allowed us to hear every members voice.
(Something that wasn’t very common practice with boy bands and girl groups leading all the way up to the 2010’s.)
Though the song was released in 1965 there are stories that claim the song was originally written in 1964, but due to fear of plagiarism by Paul McCartney and arguments about arrangements with George Martin, Yesterday took months to finally see the light of day.
After many years of success “Yesterday” continues to get covered, remade, and played on radio stations around the world.
In 2010, as part of their “Winter” album the R&B boy band, Boyz II Men covered the song…in Spanish. That’s right the infamous band known for their hits like; “End of the Road,” “Water Runs Dry,” “I’ll Make Love to You,” and many more, covered an English hit in Spanish.
Surprised? Well here is more surprises for you, this isn’t the first time that the group took on music in a different language. As a matter of fact in 1997 the boys released a Spanish version of their album “Evolution” featuring hit songs such as; “4 Seasons of Love,” “End of the Road,” “On Bended Knee,” plus many more in Spanish.
In my opinion the boys do an amazing job each time and you would have thought that Spanish was fluent language that they had been speaking for a while. Their version of “Yesterday,” called “El Ayer,” sticks to the R&B and soft feel that the boys are known for. Sung in acapella with the guys harmonizing and singing the background and foreground vocals, the song is carried by their velvet and smooth vocals.
This isn’t the first time an R&B artist has turn to Spanish versions of songs. Most recently Beyonce also rereleased her second studio album, “Bday,” in Spanish as well. This is an example that music can speak to anyone and that Spanish music isn’t just for the Latin world. Take a listen below to both versions and you decide for yourself.