Say Si Si, originally written in Spain in 1935 has had many incarnations… a Spanish language number performed by Gloria Jean and the Guadalajara Trio, a swinging toe-tapper with a whirl of woodwind overlaid by brash brass by Marion Hutton and the Glen Miller Orchestra, a crystal clear belter from the Andrews Sisters – and much more besides.
Covered by Judy Garland, Ellen Corner and a host of others it has often stayed rhythmically close to its Latin roots, or has gone down the swing/big band line – with the notable exceptions such as Chet Atkins’ smooth Nashville country version.
Here, The Bevin Boys give the classic number a completely different twist. Staying true to the song’s European roots, they transfer it to a small café somewhere in a French town during that golden period in the inter-war years.
Hearing The Bevin Boys as a gipsy café band is a refreshing surprise. The track bounces along beautifully. Backed by accordion, guitar, violin, bass and drums the song achieves a kind of delightful lightness with the voices of The Three Belles floating over the sun-filled track.
My partner, Jackie, told me that this one is an absolute cracker of a track for dancers. It’s more than that. It evokes a bit of sunshine and a bit of joy from the Mediterranean, and encourages you to relax, enjoy… and smile.
For that, I say a definite Si, Si!