Sijmadicandhapajiee (Avion Travel)

I know that the name of Paolo Conte attracts some interest from the visitors, and I hope the video below (produced by Guiseppe Ragazzini, whose work you have already seen in Notebooks) will inspire you to learn more. And no, I don’t expect you to be able to pronounce the name of the song (I do look forward, however, to seeing if this post generates any AT-related queries).


It has taken me some time to deliver my own promise, mainly because my Italian isn’t as good as the song demands. I had to resort to my friend’s assistance, and I sincerely thank Marco for being a great friend and, well, an Italian, too. The text below is the result of my effort at translating and his brainstorming and brushing of it. Mille grazie, Marco!

One of particular difficulties must be the dialect. As Giorgio Maimone, the reviewer of the album Danson Metropoli deftly put it, “Sijmadicandhapajiee” non è un mantra indiano (isn’t an Indian mantra), but “siamo dei cani da pagliaio” in the dialect of the Asti region in Italy. I found the explanation on another site of what this expression means: Questo è un detto tipico dei contadini delle nostre terre per indicare le persone che coltivano pochi interessi o che comunque non escono mai dalla propria ristretta cerchia di conoscenze ed attività, persone “per cui le arti stan nei musei”.” That is: “Sijmadicandhapajee” is a person who has few interests or who restricts themselves by a very narrow circle of knowledge and activities; somebody “for whom the arts are in the museums“.

So, over to the translation:

Somebody is a mechanic,
Someone sends him to me
To fix the steering wheel,
And doesn’t ask me
Neither money nor thank-yous,
It doesn’t matter because
In the other room
He sees the bed occupied
By his deep sleep.


At the end, it doesn’t matter
If there some woman
Has taken from the stars
The music that won’t give
To anyone
A permission to dance with her,
These are the folks for whom
The arts are in the museums.


I have to say, you are very welcome to leave a comment with corrections, if such still need to be done. Otherwise, I and Marco shall content ourselves with the thought that we did a decent job.


2 thoughts on “Sijmadicandhapajiee (Avion Travel)”

  1. Thanks a lot for your translation of “Sijmadicandhapajiee”. Great song! Great clip too by Avion Travel. As I am going to a Paolo Conte concert next Tuesday and giving a talk on the maestro in my Italian course next Thursday… I can now finally explain what Sijmadicandhapajiee really means.
    Great blog too. Keep on going.


  2. Hello, and thanks a lot for the comment! Will you be posting any photos from the concert to your blog? I’d be happy to link to the post, so please let me know. Otherwise, we can maybe have a chat about the concert, and post it here, as a sort of interview?

    All the best,



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