Lately, more and more artists around the globe have come out to criticize Venezuela’s dictatorship. Gustavo Dudamel, Venezuela’s star classical director, finally “spoke out” (against repression) and urged Maduro to change course, Miguel Bosé “lent his full support” to the peaceful protestors, and Los Amigos Invisibles took a few minutes of their live show to bash “those hijoeputas” in power and honor those fighting on in the streets.

Heck, even Residente is condemning the repressors (read: the government).

But what about those leftie artists that just looove to speak out against oppression?

Here’s Ska-P, a Spanish ska band well-known for harshly criticizing capitalism, racism and animal cruelty:

En esta democracia hay mucho listo que se lucra
exprimiendo a nuestra clase social.
Les importa cuatro huevos si tienes catorce hijos
y la abuela no se puede operar.

Yup, seems like they’re singing against the bolichicos. Funny that their references of Venezuela are all about praising the low electricity prices or flat-out denying that Venezuelans are hungry. The reds are in power, so everything must be great!

Or how about Manu Chao, a pacifist, ecologist, and marijuana legalization supporter? Take it away:

Esta ciudad es la propiedad del señor Matanza
Esa joya, esa mina y esa finca y ese mar,
ese paramilitar son propiedad del señor Matanza
Ese federal, ese chivato, ese sapo al sindicato
y el obispo general son propiedad del señor Matanza

Hey, seems he found a great new nickname for Godgiven Hair (a.k.a. Diosdado Cabello)– but still remains oblivious to it. Manu Chao thinks Venezuela is going through a social transformation that “upsets some people”. You got that right, bro, it’s upsetting millions upon millions who don’t get enough to eat because of irresponsible government policies.

And here’s Andrés Calamaro, whose ideology is “the music belongs to those who listen to it, and nobody else”:

Lo tuyo es mío y lo mío es mío
nos han llevado a la indiferencia
tenés excusas, los otros tienen
que te mantengan, para eso están
sos el burgués más corrompido que existe
y te engañás pensando que sos un hippie
vos explotás a todos y no das nada
y eso es ser el peor capitalista
cuando tenés te hacés el burro
vivís de arriba, qué asco me das

Me! I know this one! He’s talking about Juan Carlos Monedero, who swindled the nation out of at least 3 million dollars while advising Venezuela on how a country goes socialist.

And of course, there’s Rage Against the Machine, a band well-known for their stand against repressive governments, that sells T-shirts depicting Molotov cocktails. Back in 2014, Guitarist Tom Morello was fond of Zurda Konducta’s logic that called the protests a US-backed coup.

Tha same bodies buried hungry
But with different last names
These vultures rob everyone
Leave nothing but chains
Pick a point here at home
Yes tha picture’s tha same
There’s a field full of slaves
Some corn and some debt
There’s a ditch full of bodies

Tha check for tha rent
There’s a tap, tha phone, tha silence of stone
Tha numb black screen
That be feelin’ like home
And tha riot be tha rhyme of tha unheard

Yep, they know what happens when vultures rob everyone. The unheard rise up. It doesn’t matter if the vultures are from the right or from the left – it happened in the Caracazo, and it’s happening now. Tom, read your own Twitter bio sometime: feed the poor, fight the power.

Here’s the deal. We like these artists, we grew up with their music, we empathize with their calls  for a more just society and to take care of the Pachamama. But they don’t get to speak out against the Rajoy administration’s corruption and Pinochet’s human rights abuses while remaining completely silent about Maduro’s dictatorship and the ruinous state of Venezuela.

It’s time for leftie artists to eat their lyrics. If they’ve read unbiased accounts of the crisis and the protests, if they’ve spoken to a venezolano de a pie recently, they know our people are being oppressed by the new rich. And they should speak out against the Maduro regime.

It’s the right thing for a true leftist to do.

Okay, so are you feeling like some internet trolling fun? Play this game with us:

  1. Find a song that speaks against oppression, authoritarianism or state-sponsored violence. Preferably from a leftie, to help them overcome their blind spot.
  2. Take a screenshot of the relevant lyrics.
  3. Holler at the artist on Twitter! Use the hashtag #CanciónDeProtestaParaVzla  

The times they-are-a-changin.

23 COMMENTS

  1. I can understand remaining silent. I mean, they may not even care (that takes a lot, but well, it is possible)

    I cant get SUPPORTING the assholes. Fucking hell, you poseur; you have been telling me for years that I have to raise against the system, and here you are, on the side of the tear gas and the shotguns?

    I’ve spent a lot of the last months trying to get to people that, if here in Spain you are angry about corruption, the economic crisis, etc… and have a right to protest, then come on, protestors in Venezuela are your brothers! They are protesting the same things, only at 10000x intensity.

    On the front of music, I dont know what would be the position of the members of Los Prisioneros (apart from hating each other it seems), but a very good one for Venezuela is this:

  2. As protest anthems go, you could do worse than this own…

    We’re Not Gonna Take It
    by Twisted Sister

    Oh we’re not gonna take it
    No, we ain’t gonna take it
    Oh we’re not gonna take it anymore

    We’ve got the right to choose it
    There ain’t no way we’ll lost it
    This is our life, this is our song

    We’ll fight the powers that be just
    Don’t pick our destiny ’cause
    You don’t know us, you don’t belong

    Oh we’re not gonna take it
    No, we ain’t gonna take it
    Oh we’re not gonna take it anymore

    Oh you’re so condescending
    Your gall is never ending
    We don’t want nothin’, not a thing from you

    Your life is trite and jaded
    Boring and confiscated
    If that’s your best, your best won’t do

    Oh Oh

    We’re right (yeah)
    We’re free (yeah)
    We’ll fight (yeah)
    You’ll see (yeah)

    Oh we’re not gonna take it
    No, we ain’t gonna take it
    Oh we’re not gonna take it anymore

    Oh we’re not gonna take it
    No, we ain’t gonna take it
    Oh we’re not gonna take it anymore

    No way

    Oh Oh

    We’re right (yeah)
    We’re free (yeah)
    We’ll fight (yeah)
    You’ll see (yeah)

    Oh we’re not gonna take it
    No, we ain’t gonna take it
    Oh we’re not gonna take it anymore

    Oh we’re not gonna take it
    No, we ain’t gonna take it
    Oh we’re not gonna take it anymore

    Just you try and make us
    We’re not gonna take it
    Come on!

    No, we ain’t gonna take it
    You’re all worthless and weak
    We’re not gonna take it anymore

    Now drop and give me twenty
    We’re not gonna take it
    Oh pledge pin

    No, we ain’t gonna take it
    Oh you and your uniform
    We’re not gonna take it anymore

  3. Not very good examples on the article (and comments):
    – Ska-P: on hiatus since 2014
    – Manu Chao: last studio record is from 2007. Not his best work.
    – Andres Calamaro (are you sure Calamaro is a leftist?): last studio record is from 2013 (and really sucks).
    – RATM: last studio record from 2000 and they did a reunion tour in 2007 / 2008.
    – Prisioneros broke up (for good) in 2006.
    – Twisted Sister: believe it or not, they were still touring in 2016.

    If you want a real impact you need the endorsement of Luis Fonsi (… and Justin Bieber).

  4. March we must for our cause
    To free Venezuela from your jaws
    This regime shoots to kill
    But they will never break our will
    Venezuela will again be free
    We will fight for liberty
    God will watch over us
    As we fight for what is just
    Nicholas, you kill and maim
    Venezuelans curse your name
    We will take back our land
    From Maduro’s evil band
    Venezuela will again be free
    Maduro, will be History!

    It will probably lose a lot in the translation, but I just had to.

  5. Well Ruben Blades is definitely a lefty anti imperialist and he came out strong against Maduro recently.
    But really, at this point is not that Venezuelans need more convincing or inspiration to get Maduro out with about 90% against him.
    What is needed is not songs but guns to kick the regime out.
    We need to realize we are facing organized crime that have taken a whole country hostage, we need a better, stronger united group to fight them back.

  6. Haven’t heard Daniela Cabello singing the praises of Commandante lately. Maybe she has had a change of heart and would be willing to do a protest song?

  7. Do you know who Tyron Gonzalez is?

    The dude’s been reuniting people from all social classes from a while ago.

    I remember marching the 12F14 along with students from the unimet, la central, some bachilleres and guarimberos, everyone singing un dia en el barrio de canserbero.

    This is just my opinion, but I think there is no other musician that inspire the modern protesters more than El Can.

    Ellos saben que arderian en llamas ya nadie se ama
    El mundo esta mal el racismo vive
    Me atrevo a pensar que es casi igual que antes inclusive
    Usa y Europa, humillando a los emigrantes

    Que en tropas llegan a sus tierras con la ropa rota
    Sin pan para meterse en la boca
    ¿Es esta la edad moderna o la misma mierda gota en otra copa?
    Trabajo escaso, países sumidos en el fracaso

    Un dia en el barrio was written in 12′

    And this…

    El periódico, el café, la merienda en la lonchera
    La bendición con fe, el beso pa’ la abuela
    La camioneta full, los chamos pa’ la escuela
    Porque no sirven para comer los pollo en mi cazuela

    Los “¿Cómo estás, compadre?”, los “Vamos que ya es tarde”
    Los “Viste que ya mataron aquel c*** e’ su madre”
    Pan con el porto, el refresco con lo chino
    El programa mañanero que conducen los sifrinos
    Tajada pal’ almuerzo, el arroz no quedó también
    Los crímenes perversos que pasaron ayer
    En el noticiero del medio día los puedes ver
    Mientras se están olvidando ya los crímenes de antier

    Los que entran a la una, la pepa, el sol que abruma
    Pasar por la licorería para echarte una
    Los huecos que cuando le caen dos gotas son lagunas
    Los buhoneros ¿quiere un alma? Venga y pruebe una.
    Los recoge-locos, los taxis en motos
    Robos en teléfonos de esos que toman fotos
    Pelotica e’ goma, el policía con cigarro
    Dile al menor que se quite que va pasar un carro
    Con los pies descalzos y dos piedras de arquería
    La niña que se viste ya mostrando la alcancía
    El viejo de mil años que no ha muerto todavía
    La chama que era fea y se puso buena en un día

    Ganya, baloncesto, préstame y te presto
    Los malditos pacos pidiendo pa’ los refrescos
    Salsa, vallenato, reggaeton, hip hop
    Cuando murió Michael Jackson se escuchó hasta pop
    Jóvenes que por moda se meten a malandros
    Niñas tirando porque eso es lo que se está usando
    Niños que no pueden ni levantar la pistola
    Mujeres criando más de cinco niños sola
    La humildad, los modales, la lucha por los reales
    Los creyentes predicando los días finales
    Los políticos, las chismosas y los críticos
    El indigente siempre con su perro raquítico
    El que te mira mal por la maldita envidia
    La gente que te quiere aunqu.rmales, espíritus que salen
    Según el don que dan los datos y que nunca tiene reales
    Niños embalando en los centros comerciales
    Se acabaron los remedios en los hospitales
    Conciertos de pólvora, la cartera escóndela
    Que la maldad es un astro haciéndote una orbita
    Hay droga en la esquinita, agua en las bombitas
    En carnavales donde casualmente nos la quitan
    Los estruendos de los triki trakis en diciembre
    El viejo amargado que del feliz año alegre

    Matiné en la casa de Mantane
    Prepara por segunda vez la clase de inglés
    Se escucha en la calle la campana del heladero
    El chichero raspadero y toda clase de buhonero
    El señor que vive siempre reparando el carro
    Límpiate los pies para que no llenes todo de barro
    Se quemó el bombillo, la poceta no baja
    Preñaron a la hija de la vieja que habla paja
    Raperos que hacen con la boca el bombo y la caja
    Trabaja el estudiante y el estudiante trabaja
    Las redadas, las herramientas prestadas
    Graffitis de políticos que nunca hicieron nada
    De nada, aprovecho, a la orden mayor
    Permiso, bien pueda, voltea mi amor
    Buen día, disculpa, muchas gracias señor
    Siéntese aquí señora en la para por favor (ou!)

    O sea hay mucha gente buena
    Guerreando por el desayuno, el almuerzo y la cena
    Aquí perros aúllan dentro del vecindario
    Y a dormir,

    muy buenas noche, barrio (x4).

    • thank you for posting the lyrics, the 2 times i tried to listen to Canserbero i couldn’t understand a word he was saying,

    • Great lyrics, Venezuela-specific, but something simpler/catchier/repetitive might be a better hymn/marching song for this occasion, incorporating the fight of the youth/their caidos.

  8. Do you know how many Dictatorships there are in the world?

    In the 21st century “the bright future”, year 2017 there are 48 DICTATORSHIPS that share our one and only planet.
    Technically, It is hard to compile a list on which we could all agree since in some cases there are some “type” of dictatorships than can be qualified less negatively, it is really a spectrum but here we go.

    There are a base of 37 countries with a MALIGN Dictatorship then the rest with governments superficially disguised as “democratic” but with equally severe HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS and LACK of INDEPENDENT POWERS OR RULE OF LAW.

    I start from the principle that every dictator is EVIL by nature given the use of REPRESSION of the most fundamental human values such Freedom of Speech, Freedom of assembly, right to information, right to justice, torture, arbitrary arrest, discrimination on race, gender and religious freedoms.

    The typical dictator in these countries is an omnipresent figure with a role of President, or special denominations such President for Life, Emperor, King, Sultan, Monarch, etc

    COUNTRIES.
    1.-CUBA
    2.-CHINA
    3.-NORTH KOREA
    4.-BELARUS
    5.-TAJIKISTAN
    6.-KAZAKHSTAN
    7.-GAMBIA
    8.-MAURITANIA
    9.-CHAD
    10.-SUDAN
    11.-ERITREA
    12.-DJIBOUTI
    13.-SOMALIA
    14.-ETHIOPIA
    15.-SOUTH SUDAN
    16.-CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC
    17.-CAMEROON
    18.-EQUATORIAL GUINEA
    19.-GABON
    20.-CONGO
    21.-UGANDA
    22.-RWANDA
    23.-BURUNDI
    24.-ANGOLA
    25.-ZIMBABWE
    26.-SWAZILAND
    27.-ALGERIA
    28.-LAOS
    29.-LIBYA
    30.-EGYPT
    31.-JORDAN
    32.-SYRIA
    33.-IRAN
    24.-CAMBODIA
    35.-VIETNAM
    36.-AFGHANISTAN
    37.-SAUDI ARABIA
    38.-UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
    39.-YEMEN
    40.-QATAR
    41.-BAHRAIN
    42.-OMAN
    43.-BRUNEI
    44,-THAILAND
    45.-MYANMAR
    46.-AZERBAIJAN
    47.-TURKMENISTAN
    48.-UZBEKISTAN

    Many would think that today there are few countries under these conditions but lets see the facts. According to the UN there are 194 countries in the world. So 48 accounts for 24.7% with oppressive regimes. That is 1/4 !!

    Now, have you seen Venezuela send troops to free one of these countries?
    Have you been moved for just ONE of the multiple civil wars in any of those countries where hundreds of people die daily?
    Have you cried for other people dying of starvation?
    DO YOU BELIEVE THAT ANY COUNTRY WOULD COME TO OUR RESCUE?
    UNFORTUNATELY I WOULD HAVE TO SAY NO.

    The international community only debates, issue statements, condemns verbally, it denounces the cruelty of these regimes, the pope send blessings and prayers, BUT IT DOESN’T GOES BEYOND THAT.

    THIS COMING JULY, my dear friends we will become officially the 49th addition to this infamous list, unless we do manage to defeat the maduro regime.

    ONLY WITH STRENGTH, INTELLIGENCE, COURAGE AND CONVICTION WE WOULD BREAK THE CHAINS OF OPPRESSION AND I CAN ASSURE YOU, if we don’t fight today, for more than half of us the life wont be long enough to experience freedom again.

    Greetings.

    • Libya, Somalia, and South Sudan are not dictatorships, they are anarchies.

      Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Oman, UAE, Qatar, Bahrein, and Brunei are monarchies, not dictatorships. The oil-rich countries spread around lots of money, so not especially oppressive.(Saudi Arabia’s problems are not with the government.) Jordan is considered “partly free” by most NGOs, and has a parliament where the government is regularly criticized.

      Afghanistan is not a dictatorship, it is a flawed democracy under continual attack by totalitarian rebels.

      Thailand is under a military junta at the moment – because both major political factions are corrupt and riot when the other is office.

      Gambia is not a dictatorship – the current President was elected, defeating the long-time strongman (who tried to void the result but was removed anyway).

      Myanmar is not a dictatorship; in 2016 the military junta ceded power to elected representatives of the opposition.

      OTOH, Turkish President Erdogan has conducted an effective self-coup, achieving near-total power and suppressing opposition. So has Russian leader Putin.

    • Volt, Venezuela has been in that list since april 11 of 2002 when Chávez decided that the best method of dealing with protests was to rain gunfire on people.

  9. Almost 50% are on the African continent, only 1 (Cuba) in the Western Hemisphere (due To Kennedy’s blunders); the U. S. would be sadly mistaken to allow a second one in their direct sphere of influence (Trump is far more likely to keep this from happening than Hillary would have been–no hay mal, que por bien no venga).

    • Welp, there’s the reason the lefties are lobbying with billions of dollars to kick Trump out of office as soon as possible.

  10. Oddly, the last place (but not the first or even third) I was teargassed was a Rage Against the Machine concert.

  11. Borrowed from our Argentineans cousins;

    Ole ole ole olaa como a los nazis les va a pasar a donde vayan los iremos a buscar ole ole ole olaa como a los nazis les va pasar adonde vayan los iremos a buscar ole ole…

    I was in may this year in Buenos Aires during a business trip and went to a walk near plaza de mayo to witness how porteños march commemorating another year from the last dictatorship, and as soon as I heard this song from the crowd I felt the same as everyone there, excited, sad, happy, high vibe,… like I was living there the remembrances of my country misery, lost friends, colleagues,…. immediately took my phone and write down what I could from this crowd thinking on sharing it on social media or something… never did so thanks for this post!

    “Like the Nazis they will suffer wherever they go we will go and find them” (hard to translate) Ole ole ole ola
    If you look there (in Argentina) the parallels are incredible

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