As a kid, I never realized how important it was to be Mexican (even if it was only half).
But growing up these past years, especially this last election, I’ve realized how powerful it is to embrace that side of my heritage. I remember as a kid hearing my grandparents speaking Spanish to my father while we would be eating lunch and I would only understand the few English words they would speak in every other sentence. I always thought, “If I don’t speak Spanish, then that must mean I’m mostly white. If I can’t speak my grandparents native tongue, then being Mexican must mean less than being white.” Looking on that now, I realize how ridiculously dumb that was of me to think. I remember as a kid not wanting to make tamales on Christmas Eve because I thought they were dumb and gross. I didn’t understand why we had to make them every year. Now, that’s one of the few things about the holiday season I look forward to. I love hearing my aunt talk to her kids in Spanish, and I love hearing her speak Spanish to us while my sister tries to speak it back and/or tries to understand what she’s saying. I look forward to hearing Spanish, cooking, listening to Spanish music, and dancing while we put the masa on the corn husks. I remember for my grandmother’s funeral when I was 16 or 17, my father asked me to make a playlist of Spanish songs to play as background music at the funeral. And it was at that point where I felt almost embarrassed I knew absolutely no Spanish songs, bands, or music.
So with that, these are a few of the Spanish songs that I frequently listen to: