The Mexican trio Los Tres Tristes Tigres wasted no time after Donald Trump’s election as president of the United States to release a scathing corrido about what Mexicans can expect from the new administration. “He’s not going to be nice,” they warn, “we all heard what he said.” The song, titled “La Jaula de Trump” (“Trump’s Cage”), is sure to be the first of many musical protests against the incoming president, who made the deportation of illegal Mexican immigrants a key point of his campaign. “We are screwed now,” continues the corrido, “We must forget about Walmart and Disneyland.”
Corridos are narrative songs that, accompanied by simple melodies, address history, politics, and cultural issues, usually from the point of view of the working poor. Though historically popular in many Spanish-speaking countries, these days they mostly come out of Mexico, especially the northern region that shares a border with the United States. Over the course of the presidential campaign many Mexican artists, amateurs and professionals, posted corridos on Youtube and other video-sharing sites to express their fear and frustration about Trump and his supporters.
One of the most polished efforts is “El Corrido de la Hillary y el Trump” by Banda La Maravillosa. In the video a band of mariachis play their trumpets in the Oval Office, as paper cutouts of Trump and his opponent, Hillary Clinton, dance around and mug at the camera. Trump, according to this song, is “a toupee on a cheeto” who wants to profile Muslims and may end up destroying the world. In “El Corrido de Donald Trump,” the comedian El Morro takes a similar tone: “Now any potato face thinks he can be president.” Adopting a more dignified pose, Mexican legend Vicente Fernandez released his own corrido for the election, in which he chooses not to insult Trump but instead ask that Americans vote for Clinton.
Los Tres Tristes Tigres released their own “Corrido de Donald Trump,” back in July 2015. In it, like many people on both sides of the border in those far off days, they still see a Trump victory as unimaginable. “He has such a loose mouth,” they sing, “Let’s see how long it lasts.” It now looks like it will last much longer. At the very least this should give plenty of opportunities for new corridos about him to be written and sung.