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The history of the song Mi Tototlán

On the morning of August 23, 1976, Jesús Ríos Camarena, appeared at 129 on Real de Mayorazgo street, in Xoco neighborhood, at the office of the Society of Authors and Composers of Mexico, in what was then the Federal District of Mexico, to register the lyrics and composition of his authorship song. A song until then without significance for the people of Tototlan.

With the composition of this song, Chuy Ríos concluded a creative process in which he sought to capture the culture, history and traditions of this municipality through his music and lyrics. Through the ranch genre he reviewed the territory, the tradition of the roosters, describing its men and women, and referring to the Christ of the parish of Saint Agustine: El Señor de la Salud.

Lyrics and bars of the song 'Mi Tototlán'

It was a singable work, with melody and harmonization, of which he wrote the first stanzas and the chorus with its bars; he attached on a typed sheet in full handwriting; he paid .20 cents for a Bulletin, and thus complied with the provisions of the current Federal Law on Copyright. That was how weeks later, on October 8 of that same year, the first song from Tototlán, Jalisco, with the title "Mi Tototlán", was registered under the number 163826.

The months passed. Near Los Angeles, CA, at El Patio, a Pancho Franco's bar in Pacoima City, in the United States, the last details were refined about the first version of "Mi Tototlán" which would be recorded on an acetate disc in a studio by Franco Records. The vocalist would be José Manuel Vaca, and the musicalization would be in charge of a musical group of Mexican immigrants, the mariachi Los Gayeros. The disc were called CORIDO ATOTOTLAN*.

However, the first version would be recorded with some adaptations. Among them, in the second stanza they changed the phrase 'con voz argentina', which means 'with a clear and sonorous voice', for 'con voz tapatía' what translates into english as with Gadalajara's voice, in allusion to the mariachi music that interpreted it. And in the chorus 'los dulces trinos de violín' was replaced by 'los lindos trinos del violín', wich meaning 'the beautiful violin trills' in english.

Today, this ranchera song has managed to become a benchmark for the municipality of Tototlan and an icon of the municipal band; that to this day, with his wind instruments and snare drums, continues to perform it in his serenade afternoons, at the kiosk in the main square, on Thursdays and Sundays, when people ask for it.

In 2018, the Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán performed the Corrido de Tototlán accompanied by the voice of the singer Ely Garcia. Do you know this version?

With information from Carlos Pérez, Gerardo Carrillo and Evelio Franco

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