Despacito, Luis Fonsi’s global hit that took last summer by storm and has been remixed and covered by Justin Bieber and everyone, now officially has a Mandarin version.
Released on January 25, 缓缓 (huǎn huǎn) — a literal translation of the song’s Spanish title, i.e., slowly — features Chinese vocals by JJ Lin 林俊杰, a 36-year-old Singaporean singer-songwriter who’s well known on the mainland. (He set a Guinness World Record by signing 3,052 CDs in two and a half hours in Tianjin in 2007.)
The lyrics to Chinese Despacito 缓缓 are below, via Baidu Baike. The chorus, translated, isn’t quite as raunchy as the original, but the basic idea of a randy young man in the corner of a nightclub fantasizing about dancing with a woman way out of his league and satisfying her on a Puerto Rican beach has been more or less retained:
Slowly, slow down
Freeze, your outline
Reply every taste of interaction
Slowly control the perfect and flawless heat
Hold your breath and it’s still the scent of each other
Remember me even if I’m not around
JJ Lin’s last verse is actually kinda sweet and innocent though:
I want to give you the sky, I want to turn with you
I want to dream with you, I want you to be favored
I’ll make a private universe for you
Compare with Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee’s original — “Step by step, soft then softly / We come up against each other, little by little / Until I make you scream / And you forget your last name / Slowly” … basically the same!
The full lyrics:
(H/T Lauren Teixeira)
POSTSCRIPT: Here’s a funny way of learning Despacito’s original Spanish lyrics if you only know Chinese. Excerpt:
Tengo que bailar contigo hoy
Dì gōng gěi bā lè gēn dì gōu yóu
Basically the same!