La Bayamesa, popularly known as “El Himno de Bayamo” or “the Bayamo Anthem,” is Cuba’s national anthem. In 1867, composers set these lyrics to melody that would become our national song.
As the national anthem, it wasn’t officially recognised until the 20th century and wasn’t performed until the following year. The Cuban people asked Perucho Figueredo to compose their national anthem. Figueredo, without dismounting his horse, composed the anthem’s words to match the people’s humming.
It was longer than the current standard version. The song’s acceptance as the national anthem resulted in the removal of the final four of its original six stanzas.
What is Cuba’s National Anthem, Who Wrote it and What do the Lyrics Mean in English?
El Himno de Bayamo (The Hymn of Bayamo), written in 1868, is Cuba’s national hymn. The Battle of Bayamo was where it was first heard.
Pedro Figueredo, a poet, musician, and freedom warrior from Cuba, wrote the song and played guitar during the Ten Years’ War, in which Cubans rebelled against the Spanish.
Figueredo also wrote the 1867 melody, which is known as “La Bayamesa” (or “The Bayamo Song”). The city of Bayamo serves as the provincial capital of Cuba’s Granma province.
After Cuba gained independence from Spain and later the United States and declared itself a republic in 1902, this tune was adopted as the nation’s official national anthem.
The Song Has Six Stanzas
The song’s acceptance as the national anthem resulted in the removal of the final four of its original six stanzas. Figueredo is credited with both the music and the lyrics, however the introduction was written by Antonio Rodreiguez-Ferrer.
The song became the official anthem in 1902 and survived the revolution of 1959. The final stanzas were critical of Spain and were cut from the modern version of the hymn because they were first sung during the battle of Bayamo.
Even though Cuba made attempts to fortify its democratic system as early as 1940, turmoil and upheavals eventually led to the Fulgencio Batista dictatorship in 1952.
By 1959, Batista had been deposed, and Fidel Castro’s communist regime was firmly in place. The song “La Bayamesa” has always been used as the national anthem.
When played in its role as the Cuban national anthem, “La Bayamesa” is typically prefaced by an instrumental piece composed by Cuban musician Antonio Rodriguez-Ferrer.