Today I’d like to share with you a song by Y Bandana from their self-titled debut album. I’ve been able to write a translation for you and, surprisingly for me, it wasn’t all that difficult. Although perhaps it shouldn’t feel so surprising as I already understood most of it from listening and there were only two phrases that were new to me (for any fellow Welsh learners out there who might be curious, it was a novelty for me that “dim llawn llathan” (literally not a full yard) means that someone is not all there/crazy, and also that spanking is “chwip din”). Still, it’s entirely possible that there are some errors, so if you speak Welsh and see something odd, please do enlighten me or something.
If you’re not familiar with Y Bandana, they were a Welsh-language pop rock group made up of two brothers, Siôn and Tomos Owens, their cousin Gwilym Bowen Rhys and his friend Robin Jones. They were very successful on the Welsh-language music scene. This song is quite funny in the way that Y Bandana’s songs often are, but I think it’s also just a tad bit disturbing. Unless it’s just me who overanalyses things as is my habit or I’ve misunderstood/mistranslated something here. 😀 But it sounds like the lyrical subject is being quite badly bullied by a despotic older sibling, rather than – as I thought before attempting this translation, just having heard this song many times over the years – slightly smothered by an overprotective parent. Not fun. Makes me feel relieved that I don’t have older siblings and didn’t have to go through something like this as a teenager. It’s natural for parents to be protective, sometimes overprotective, of their offspring, but when a year older sibling treats you like a baby, that’s kind of humiliating.
Every time I go to the club I get kicked out
Although there are some who are older than me that are not quite all there
Don’t you dare say that I’m not responsible enough
‘Cause you’re only a year older
I’ve had enough
No, no, no, I’m not a baby anymore
Wa, wa, wa, not a baby anymore
No, no, no, I’m not a baby anymore
Wa, wa, wa, not a baby
You don’t have to hold my hand for me to be able to cross the street
And just because you’re older than me I don’t get to say anything
I don’t have to get a spanking if I break the rules
Well, oops, I’ve broken one and it won’t be for the last time
Today, I’d like to share with you another song from the Welsh pop rock group Y Bandana, from their album Fel Tôn Gron, the last one they released before disbanding. This is one of their more popular songs in Wales as far as I’m aware. Unfortunately I was not able to find written lyrics for this one anywhere online, and while I think I understand a fair bit from it, it’s still definitely not everything, so I didn’t really have the courage to attempt doing a translation by ear for the purpose of this post. But basically, it is about girls, who are called Cadi and Mabli, and the lyrical subject of this song finds very attractive, and their hair is the colour of a dandelion.
For the first song of the day this year, I thought I would share with you a song from Y Bandana, a Welsh-language pop-rock group that consisted of Gwilym Bowen Rhys (one of my faza peeps, if you’re still not aware of that for some reason 😀 ), his cousins Siôn and Tomos Owens, and his school friend Robin Llwyd Jones. They were very successful on the Welsh-language music scene and I’ve shared a few songs by them already, and they’re well-known for writing a bit cheeky lyrics, since they were teens when starting out. The group has disbanded in 2016 as the members wanted to try doing some different things, Gwilym is now as successful (or even more so, perhaps), and I believe Robin is a producer for the Welsh-language record label Sain.
Heno yn yr Anglesey” is arguably their most popular and well-known song, next to “Can y Tan”.
I did a translation of it, and I’d like to ramble a bit about the process, because, well, I’m still very unexperienced when it comes to translating Welsh stuff, and find it a lot more challenging than translating from Swedish, I think not just because my Welsh skills are worse than my Swedish skills, but also due to other, more practical reasons. For example, I currently don’t have a Welsh speech synthesiser so read Welsh-language stuff either with a Polish or an English one, which makes the whole process of reading anything in Welsh a lot slower. And finding information about any sort of Welsh words, structures, not to mention idioms is more difficult than in Swedish because it is a so much smaller language. There are more Swedish resources, whether ones for learners or more generally about Swedish language, and there’s even simply more Swedish in Google, so you can often just Google some weird thing you’re not understanding to find out if it occurs anywhere else and try to figure out if it’s a common thing, if it’s an idiom or whatever, while when you do that in Welsh you’re more likely not to get a lot of results even if a specific phrase is in wide-ish use. So I’m absolutely sure that this translation contains some mistakes, and I want to tell you which bits I think may be wrong, so that you know that Bibielz may not necessarily be right, and in case some Welsh or Welsh-speaking peep comes around here some day, perhaps they’ll be willing to enlighten me or something. And maybe it’ll be interesting for some language geeks.
I actually found one translation of it that already exists that was decent, but it still seems to have some odd bits so I wanted to try and write my own that would be a bit better. But I’ll let you decide which one actually is better, in any case at least now there is more than one translation out there in the web so there’s choice. 😀 I still used that translation above as a bit of a crutch to help me out. My other crutches were the Welsh-English dictionary that I use on my Mac, as it’s the fastest for me to use of all dictionaries that I know of, Google Translate, various online resources, and, when other things failed to support my faltering brain adequately, I used my most recently discovered language toy, ChatGPT, because yes, ChatGPT does understand Welsh, even though it has random times where it is adamant that it doesn’t, or does understand what you write to it in Welsh but persistently responds in English (kinda like Swedes when you try to talk to them in Swedish but they realise you’re not a Swede 😀 ), and of course it’s very fallible, a lot more so than in English. ChatGPT likes to make stuff up so you have to be very very careful when asking it anything, but really, tools like Google Translate can also be oddly deceptive and random with Welsh translations, sometimes I truly have no idea where they get their ideas from.
So, the first line that I’m not sure whether it’s right is the second one which in the original contains the word “tennar”. The translation that I linked above translates it to “tenner” which makes sense, because “e” often changes to “a” in North Welsh, and “tennar” could be a sort of Cymricisation (Welshification, if you like 😀 ) of “tenner”. But I’m not even sure what “breaking into the tenner” could mean (perhaps because I’m not a native English-speaker or something), and I couldn’t find any evidence of “tenner” actually being used like that. So not sure it’s correct.
In the second verse there’s a line that is oddly translated as “You’re never with me when I want” which I have no idea why it is the way it is because it doesn’t make much sense compared with the original. I translated it as: “You tell me that I don’t get” which imho is more accurate but perhaps still not perfect.
Then there’s a line where they are holding hands “hyd law y byd”, which is translated to “above the crowd” in the first translation. I had no idea what “hyd law y byd” could mean, but I didn’t believe it could mean that, and Google wasn’t a whole lot of help either. ChatGPT said that it means “forever”, and I found the phrase “hyd law y byd” somewhere else on the Internet, didn’t understand the whole long sophisticated sentence that it was part of but from what I did understand it seemed to me like it could well be a more eloquent way of saying “forever”, a sort of equivalent to “until the end of time/world without end” in English. I have no more sound evidence for it but I went with my intuition and decided to agree and listen to ChatGPT in this instance.
The last verse was the toughest for me. First, there’s the intriguing word “hegar”. The other translation translates the whole line as: “And it’s been a peaceful evening”, wherein “hegar” is supposed to mean “peaceful”. Meanwhile, Google Translate translated this line as: “It’s not going to be a wild night”. I’m curious to know where it got the “It’s not going to be” part from, I mean it’s obviously not like “It’s been” and “It’s not going to be” mean the same thing, and “Mae ‘di bod” definitely means “It’s been”. And does “hegar” mean “peaceful” or “wild”, after all? My dictionary doesn’t know the word “hegar”, and I wasn’t easily able to find any definitions in Google, so I asked ChatGPT and it said “peaceful” too. I thought, well, “peace” is “hedd/heddwch”, so they both start with H, maybe that’s enough to make them family. But I searched once again more thoroughly for some examples of this word in use and found “hegar law” meaning “fierce rain”. So I went with “wild”, because “a fierce night” sounded odd in English. But I’m curious what’s the deal with peaceful and why it showed up, maybe this word has two meanings or something, though it would be funny to have one word with two opposite meanings. Like: try and guess what I mean now. 😀 Also given how seemingly obscure “hegar” is, I wonder if perhaps it’s some archaism, and I like the idea of an archaism being thrown into a “normal” song like this. 😀
Then there are “old women” and “square boys”, at least literally. The word “merched” in the original actually means “girls” rather than women, but I think each language uses its equivalent word for a girl as a slangy word for a woman. But I’m not entirely sure if “merched hen” (literally old girls), is supposed to mean old women, or perhaps more like older girls, or simply adult women who, after all, kind of are “old girls” in a way, because they’re older than the actual literal girls but still girls. 😀 Sticking with “old women” felt safest though, so that’s what I did. And square boys? No idea what that might be. I have a feeling that the word “sgwâr” has some other, colloquial meaning that I’m not familiar with, or else it’s an English calque of something. Are they “square” as in boring/mainstream or oldfashioned maybe?
And lastly, the next line contains the word “sgwario” which literally means “to square”, and in that other translation it’s translated as “square to us”. I tried to find some other meanings of “to square” in English, thinking it’s a calque, but found nothing else that would make sense to me in the context. ChatGPT told me that apparently “sgwario`’ is a slangy way of saying “to roam”, but I found nothing that would make me believe it. So I left “squaring to us”, even though I’m not convinced that this is what the “old women and square boys” are seriously doing. The “sgwâr” thing sounds like it could be wordplay and not all wordplay is easily translatable, so perhaps that’s the case here.
But anyway, I still hope this translation is reasonably good, and in any case, the song is cool.
For today, I thought I’d share with y’all a song by Y Bandana – the very popular but no longer existing Welsh-language pop rock group consisting of Gwilym Bowen Rhys (one of my faza peeps), his cousins Siôn and Tomos Owens and his friend Robin Llwyd Jones – from their last album called Fel Tôn Gron (which I believe would translate into English as something like Like a Complete Tune? Not perfectly sure). I suppose this song could be considered a sort of mild and heartening drinking/pub song. I like the very distinctly Welsh/Celtic vibe of it despite it isn’t folk.
Encouraged by my recent personal mini yet noticeable successes with Welsh learning and the recent, fairly successful I guess (though they were just nursery rhymes so you can’t really fail spectacularly there when you know a bit of the language and it’s nothing outstanding obviously to translate a nursery rhyme 😀 ), translation of Tŷ Bach Twt and Milgi Milgi by Mari Mathias, I decided to take the plunge and try to translate this song, despite I’d never translated Welsh-language songs on here before as this is the language in which I still feel most insecure out of all my languages. It was definitely more difficult and time-consuming than the nursery rhymes and I had to look up some words, but generally I also already understood a fair bit of it before attempting to do this, so in the end I managed. Though I’m sure there are some mistakes in it or bits that could have been translated better. Perhaps now that I’ve done it I’ll be able to translate Welsh songs that I share on here more regularly myself, just like it’s been the case with Swedish – at first I thought I could never be able to properly translate something between two languages of which none is my native tongue, but now I find doing most Swedish song translations to English pretty easy even if some little bits are confusing and even if I don’t do it fully well.
Come inside the house, sit down, come in from the wind and rain This is a haven, to the word, to the song and the full cup There is music [or poetry] in the ir and melody in the walls And fire in our blood like our forefathers’ We’ll sing a song, before this place closes Come into the house, where the truth flows like the wine A feeling that is so old, and the smile, and the rare stones and the soil It flows with ease through your veins Let’s all come to the crossroad of souls We’ll sing a song, before this place closes If you are lost in the world, without a friend or faith Peace of mind and all its magic is available at the top of the street It flows with ease through your veins Let’s all come to the crossroad of souls We’ll sing a song, before this place closes Come inside the house to us, come closer to the warmth of the bar And we’ll raise our glasses up, to the sky. And say cheers together There’s music in the air and melody in the walls And fire in our blood like our forefathers’ We’ll sing a song, before this place closes We’ll sing a song, before this place closes
For today, I have quite a cheerful song for you, by Y Bandana, a rock group from North Wales of which one of the members Is one of my faza peeps – Gwilym Bowen Rhys. – The group no longer exists, but it was really popular on the Welsh-language scene, and this song was one of their most popular, if not the most recognisable one. The video below contains both the Welsh lyrics as well as the translation so you can have a look.
For today I want to share with you a song from Y Bandana’s album Bywyd Gwyn. For any newbies out there, Y Bandana is, or rather was, a rock band from north Wales who wrote their songs in Welsh, and the band consists of brothers Siôn (bass) and Tomos (keyboard) Owens, their cousin Gwilym Bowen Rhys (vocals and guitar) and his friend Robin Llwyd Jones (drums) and Gwilym, who is a solo artist now as well as member of an alt-folk group called Plu has been one of my faza peeps. While I don’t understand the entire lyrics of this song, I do understand enough to be able to figure out that it’s about being in love with someone so much that it has turned into an addiction, and the person who is the cause of this is fully aware of it.
Today I thought I’d share with you a song by Y Bandana – the cheeky teenage Welsh rock band that one of my faza peeps – Gwilym Bowen Rhys – was the frontman of while it existed. – When I think of the four solo albums that Gwilym has released since they disbanded it kind of feels like Y Bandana was a thing in some very distant past, even though they released their last album in 2016. And it’s a song from that last album – Fel Tôn Gron – that I want to share with you. It’s called quite appropriately given that it comes from their final album, namely Diwedd y Gân, which means End of the Song.
Today I have for you another dose of Welsh rock. Since one of the members of Y Bandana was Gwilym Bowen Rhys (one of my faza peeps) I’ve shared a few songs from this band before. But in case you haven’t heard about them before I’ll say that they were, similarly to Y Trŵbz whose song I shared yesterday, largely a family-based group, consisting of two brothers (Tomos and Siôn Owens) their aforementioned cousin Gwilym Bowen Rhys, and Gwilym’s school friend Robin Llwyd Jones. They started it out as teenagers and were very popular on the Welsh-language music scene especially with young people and quite characteristic for their catchy melodies and funny, often a bit cheeky lyrics. The band is however no longer a thing since a few years, as they’ve all moved on to different things that they do with their lives. While with Gwilym I’m mostly fascinated by all his folk-related activity, I also really like Y Bandana’s music as well and they’re one of the very first Welsh rock arts that I listened to and that got me deeper into this over time.
A lot of their lyrics sound interesting, but I often have a bit of trouble getting them fully, I guess because there’s a lot of such slang words and contractions and stuff that I haven’t been familiarised with yet. I still have trouble with them even though it’s been over five years if I’m counting right ever since I’ve got the faza on Gwilym. This song is one of those that I’ve been particularly interested in, because I myself am someone who believes that if you have a house, a room that you love, that you put a lot of effort into making it your own space and the way you like it, what’s the point of leaving it unless you absolutely, necessarily have to? And I was curious what’s their (I guess they wrote lyrics collaboratively) reason for not leaving the house.
So while I understand far from everything here, I’ll share with you what I do understand. I believe he (that’s how we’ll be referring to the lyrical subject for simplicity’s sake) feels a bit ambivalent about staying at home all the time, and has a fair bit of distance to it. That feels pretty clear even with all the gaps I have in understanding it. He says he has too much free time, and spends his time sitting in front of the telly, playing football (I guess, or perhaps more like playing with a football but not necessarily playing football as such, I’m not sure), staring at the screen for hours and avoiding thinking about the homework he has to do. I’m not sure if I’m right but it seems to me that he’s not necessarily happy with his monotonous and unproductive lifestyle. He says that he’s never liked going out, and clearly considers staying at home a better option because even when it’s raining outside, it’s always nice at home and you don’t have to care about weather conditions. There’s also some girl in the picture that he’s crushing on or something but it’s tricky as you can imagine. He’s trying to “follow” her, but “it’s too sudden/abrupt” for him, whatever that might mean. So the thing with the girl also makes him feel rather unhappy in his situation and he wants to be with her or something but doesn’t want to go out of his comfort zone. Moreover, I’m not really getting that sentence entirely but he’s concerned that it won’t last more than a day but I’m not sure what – his feelings to her once they start dating, her feelings to him, their relationship…? – He has a devil on his one shoulder and an angel on another and they’re telling him what to do. The devil tells him to go out and the angel tells him not to dare.
So yeah, we had some songs on my blog that I said in my opinion could be good candidates for an introverts’ anthem or something like that, and perhaps this song could make it as a relatable anthem for agoraphobics, or hikikomori people.
Today I have for you a very cool song from Y Bandana – the Welsh rock group which no longer exists now but was comprised of Gwilymm Bowen Rhys, his cousins and his friend – from their second album called Bywyd Gwyn.
Today I’d like to share with you a song from Y Bandana – one of the bands which Gwilym Bowen Rhys (one of my faza subjects) used to be a member of. – I said it already before on here but I really like how it shows Gwilym’s musical versatility and diversity – when you’ll listen to what he does with Y Bandana, with Plu and then solo, it all feels quite a lot different yet he’s thriving in all those music realms. Y Bandana was a rock band that he and his cousins and his friend founded as teens, and they were really successful in Wales, and recognisable for their humorous, kind of cheeky, mischievous and sometimes a bit silly lyrics. The song that I want to share with you however is different, because it really has quite a different style than all of their other songs. It comes from their final album Fel Ton Gron, which to me has a bit more musically adventurous and mature feel to it but at the same time is still very much their style and I think it’s my favourite album of theirs. But, like I said, this one song has a different feel to it than their music in general or the rest of the album, more folky in a modern way than rocky definitely, yet at the same time it complements the album as a whole very well and it doesn’t feel out of place at all. And I like the differentness of it, so that’s mostly why I want to share it with you.
Today, I’ve got quite a quirky song for you. As some of you perhaps remember, Y Bandana is a band fronted by Gwilym Bowen Rhys – my most recent major faza subject. – He was the vocalist and guitarist in it, and apart from him there were also his two cousins – Tomos Jones on keyboards and Siôn Owens on bass guitar – and Gwilym’s school friend Robin Llwyd Jones on percussion. – It was something they were doing in their teens and early twenties, and the band is no longer alive, however it shows in such a cool way how musically versatile Gwilym actually is. For those who don’t know – albeit I write so much about my fazas that I’m not sure there is someone reading this who doesn’t know already – Gwilym’s main musical interest evolve around Welsh folk/acoustic music. Even in this genre alone, he can be very flexible, but it’s fun to see that he’s also had some experience with pop-rock like this and they were really good at it. They had very characteristically catchy songs, and usually somehow mischievous/humourous lyrics. And that’s definitely the case with this song. I really regret that I can’t translate it to you so that you’d have more of a context but my understanding of it is a bit patchy so that probably wouldn’t be the best idea, however I do know enough to say that it’s all about another person being very smelly. I like when people are inventive with song topics, even when they’re sometimes a little gross like that. :DIt really made me laugh when, after having listened to Y Bandana for a while already and starting to learn Welsh, I started picking up some bits of lyrics and figured out very roughly what this song is about, that really made me laugh. It’s funny when listening to music in other languages that you barely know or not at all, to realise that something you’ve been listening to concerns such a fascinating topic.
Today I have for you another very Christmassy song, from another of my crushes – Gwilym Bowen Rhys – and more exactly the first band in which he sang and played guitar, called Y Bandana. It doesn’t exist any longer, but from what I know from a fellow Gwil’s fan from Wales he is most known for being a member of this band as they were so successful on the Welsh language music scene and I guess thanks to the fact that they were making pop music could reach just slightly wider audience. That’s cool and I really like their music, although I think Gwilym’s solo music, folk music, is so very beautiful, so it’s a pity that for many people he is associated only with Y Bandana, and there is also the band called Plu which i also shared here earlier, who make great, sort of psychedelic, otherworldly music.
Anyways, I really like to listen to this song in Christmas season, it’s funny and just great. 🙂
Let me give you some background to this post first. 🙂
In the last question of the day post where I asked you what’s on your mind, I forgot one incredibly important thing in my answer.
Oh, a great news I have for you! Um, well… maybe not so much for you, just for me hahahahaha. Despite of all my moodswings, overthinking, bla bla bla, I’m still incredibly hyper elated excited and I CAN”T WAAAAAAAIT!!! I just can’t figure out how could I forget about it in my last post. I guess the baby naming stuff is developing so dynamically. But generally, I’m thinking about this exciting thing ALL THE TIME. And although I got to know about it last week, still, while thinking of this, even while writing this post, I can’t help and I’m still smiling so widely, that I just hope my lips won’t crack and burst soon.
Guys, my crush, my music crush, Gwilym Bowen Rhys, is releasing a new album! On 1st September. I’ve already pre-ordered it and I heard one song from it and it sunds fabulous. HIs last album was very sophisticated, idyllic folk, he has shown us so many of his musical identities in the past few years, in different bands and solo, and this album is going to be folky as well, but I guess even more traditional, and more like lively, I’d say.
That led to me having a crush peak, you know, when you have a crush you have it all the time, but at least in my case there are peaks. If I already have a peak, what will be in September, hehehe. And that reminds me, it will be the first time I’ll be looking forward to 1st September. In all previous years it was a nightmare date to me. Because after long summer holidays I had to go back to Hell, which was the more difficult that a new year always brings changes, and in that place, it always meant sudden, unexpected, awful changes in which you don’t have anything to say, even if you’re the main person whom a change applies to. And even when I got out of the boarding school, there still were memories and I always tend to slip into nasty crises at the beginning of September. So I hope this year will be different thanks to Gwil and thanks to the fact I don’t have to go to any school next year, so maybe the memories won’t be triggered so badly.
OK, let’s go back to today’s song.
Y Bandana was one of the bands of which Gwilym was a part. It doesn’t exist any longer, but it consisted of two brothers, Sion and Tomos Owens, their cousin Gwilym and Gwilym’s friend Robin Llwyd Jones. And they were a sort of boys band, with catchy songs and humourous lyrics, in Welsh language. They were very liked. Gwilym was a vocalist and guitarist. So it’s another of his, as I said, musical identities – a more rocky, mischievous one – which I really like. I generally like how musically diverse he is.
So I thought that because of this album coming out soon, I’d share something by Gwilym, and I decided on my favourite song from Y Bandana’s last album, the song is called “Y Felan Las”. I think it means something like the blue melancholy in ENglish, though the word las (or glas) has so many meanings in Welsh, including the fact that it even means a few different colours, that I find it a little confusing. But the piece and the lyrics are blue so I guess that’s it.
I don’t know what I like so much about this song, I just really like it, and I can listen to it over and over when I’m blue, but blue in a particular way, won’t go into details right now. I guess it could be Gwilym’s vocals that I like so much in this song, but I couldn’t precise what’s so special about it in thsi particular song, plus obviously I like hsi vocals everywhere.
The lyrics, I wish I could know more about them. I found a Welsh text somewhere lately and spend half a hour or so at it trying to deciffer. What I sure know it’s about growing up, I mean adolescence, loneliness, love, feeling blue, I guess being single and probably fitting in?… there seems to be more to it, but,a s I said, it just was hard to figure it out. I can’t wait for the day I’ll get more out of it.
For some stupid reason the link to Spotify doesn’t want to work here, so I’ll have to give you just the link to my Dropbox, which will expire after 30 days.
Finally, Welsh Language Music Day (Dydd Miwsig Cymru) has come, which I am very happy about. Well, I listen to music in all “my” languages every or almost every day, so maybe it shouldn’t matter that much for me, but it’s always nice to celebrate, plus it’s always an opportunity to find out some more great music.
The song I want to share with you though, isn’t really very new, or isn’t very new to me. I wondered whether to show you something brand new or something from Gwilym again and decided for the latter, so that soon I will complete my “crush series”.
This song surely isn’t that sophisticated and ambitious as the one I showed you yesterday performed by Plu, but it’s definitely cool, funny and catchy and the only thing these both songs may have in common is the topic. They’re both about love, or actualy this one is more about infatuation, but anyway… It’s called “Siwgwr Candi Mêl” which means sugar candy honey in English and it’s one of the songs on Y Bandana’s debut album.
Y Bandana is another band in which Gwilym Bowen Rhys has taken part, although now it doesn’t exist anymore. Besides Gwilym, who was the frontman of the band, as well as the guitarist and leading vocalist, it consisted of his two cousins – Tomos (founder and keyboardist) and Siôn (bass) Owens – and his friend Robin Llwyd Jones (drums and sound engineering). They all wrote lyrics to diferent songs and Gwilym usualy wrote music, as far as I know. Their lyrics tend to be humourous and they were quite a typical, rock boys band, besides the fact their lyrics were entirely in Welsh.
I really like their music as it is just really cool, I really tend to like rock music in all kinds of “strange” languages and that’s what attracted me to them at first, and now obviously as I am learning Welsh and listening to Welsh music A LOT I like them even more.
There are the lyrics in both Welsh and English on Youtube so I won’t go into it, I think.