La incomprable, la mejor de todas Chavela.
Chavela Vargas is a mexican-costa rican singer born in San Joaquín de Flores (Costa Rica). She mostly sang rancheras, a folkloric musical form widely popular in Mexico. She dressed as a man, smoked cigars, drank heavily, carried a gun and was known for her characteristic red poncho.
In a Colombian television interview in 2000, she openly admitted she was a lesbian. Vargas was born Isabel Vargas Lizano in Costa Rica on April 17, 1919. At only 14, she fled the country because of its lack of opportunities for starting a musical career, seeking refuge in a more sophisticated Mexico. For many years she sang on the streets but in her thirties she became a professional singer.
Her first album was released in 1961 and she has recorded over eighty albums. She was partly retired in the late 1970s but came back in 1991, and debuted at Carnegie Hall in 2003 aged 83, at the behest and promotion of Spanish director Pedro Almodóvar, a long-time admirer and personal friend of Vargas. She is featured in many of his films, in both song and video.
Vargas appeared in the 2002 Julie Taymor film Frida, singing "La Llorona". Her classic "Paloma Negra" was also included in the soundtrack of the film. Vargas herself, as a young woman, was alleged to have had an affair with Frida Kahlo, during Kahlo's marriage to muralist Diego Rivera.
She also appeared in Alejandro González Iñárritu's Babel, singing "Tu Me Acostumbraste", a bolero of Frank Dominguez. Joaquín Sabina's song "Por el Boulevar de los Sueños Rotos" ("Through the Boulevard of Broken Dreams") is dedicated to Vargas.
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