Why the Spanish version of US national anthem is being ‘brought to the mainstream’

The We Are All Human Foundation and Grey released the re-recorded song on Tuesday.

Jeidimar Rijos singing the Spanish version of the U.S. national anthem. (Photo credit: Gerard Garolera, We Are All Human)
Jeidimar Rijos singing the Spanish version of the U.S. national anthem. (Photo credit: Gerard Garolera, We Are All Human)

NEW YORK: The We Are All Human Foundation has rescued a Spanish version of the U.S. national anthem from obscurity by re-recording the song and using it to address the effects of the coronavirus on the country’s Hispanic community.

Working with advertising agency Grey, the equity, diversity and inclusion-focused nonprofit discovered the translation written in 1945 by composer Clotilde Arias for the Roosevelt administration’s outreach efforts in Latin America. 

There were previous Spanish translations (and also Yiddish, Japanese and German versions) but they were not very singable, according to NPR. Arias’ version is considered the most musical.

“This is the first time it is being brought to the mainstream,” said Claudia Romo Edelman, founder and CEO of We Are All Human.

This most recent recording and a video, performed by Jeidimar Rijos, is being released by We Are All Human as part of its Hispanic Star campaign. Specifically, it is meant to draw awareness to Hispanic Star’s Hispanic Response and Recovery Plan, intended to address the effects of the pandemic for Hispanic small and medium enterprises, entrepreneurs and independent workers.

Edelman said Hispanics are disproportionately affected by the pandemic in terms of their health and economic prospects, because many work in service industries and cannot perform their jobs remotely. 

“There are very deep economic consequences,” she added. “But there is a plan. We are together and we need America to support us.”

As part of the campaign, the video will be played Tuesday during local newscasts on Spanish-language broadcast television network Univision. It will also be shared on Univision’s digital and social media platforms.

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