Artist Profiles: La Niña de los Peines

La Niña de los Peines

No one knows for sure why flamenco legend Pastora Pavón was known as La Niña de los Peines (the Girl with the Hair Combs). Some say that when she was 8, she sang in a Madrid cafe, wearing two large combs in her hair. Others believe that her nickname came from one of he most popular songs:

“Peinate tú con mis peines
Mis peines son de canela”

(Comb your hair with my combs,
My combs are made of cinnamon…)

Pastora Pavon was the sister of the great cantaor Tomas Pavon and she married cantaor Pepe Pinto. She was born in 1890 in Sevilla and started performing at a very early age.

La Niña de los Peines recorded many songs, including a wide-range of genres, from the deepest cante jondo to very commercial songs. La Niña de los Peines was so popular in Spain that the Sevilla city council had a statue built in her honor and placed in a main square.

She died in 1969.

Selected Discography

* Great Masters of Flamenco, Vol. 3 (Chant du monde, 1992)

* La Niña de los peines, voz de estaño fundido (Sonifolk, 1997)

* La voz de interes cultural: La Niña de los Peines (EMI-Odeón, 1997)

* La Niña de los peines, Patrimonio de Andalucía (Fonotrón, 2004)

* La Niña de los Peines y Manuel Vallejo (Disc Medi, 2009)

* La Niña de los Peines, Año 1930-40 (Disc Medi, 2009)

Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music and progressive music for many years. He founded the websites worldmusiccentral.org and musicasdelmundo.com. Angel produced several specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music and electronic music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World, Lektronic Soundscapes, and Mindchild Records. Angel is currently based in Durham, North Carolina.

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