Las Mananitas is a traditional Mexican birthday song which is often sung to celebrate birthdays or a person’s saint’s day. This tune is very popular in most Latin American countries.
Some people say that it is actually two songs in one. And in fact, there is a change in the song’s pace after the first couple of verses.
Interestingly, there are several versions of the song. You will find, for example, that some versions vary the verses slightly or add new verses.
You will also find that Las Mananitas is performed in different musical genres, the mariachi version being one of the most popular.
There are - among others - several Las Mañanitas banda versions and there are pop variations as well. The song has been recorded by several well-known singers, including Mexican artists Alejandro Fernández, Pedro Infante, Javier Solís, and the Mariachi Vargas of Tecatitlán.
Las Mananitas is usually sung before the birthday cake is cut. In many countries, like in Bolivia for example, the song is performed as a serenata, usually around midnight.
In Colombia, this birthday tune is sung to the quinceañeras (girls celebrating their 15th birthday). In this case, the phrase hoy por ser día de tu santo (meaning because today is your saint’s day) is replaced by a las muchachas bonitas (meaning to all the lovely girls).
Below you will find the lyrics to this popular Mexican birthday song, followed by the English translation. Keep in mind that this is one version of the song. You will find others with slight variations.
Estas son las mañanitas, que cantaba el Rey David, Hoy por ser día de tu santo*, te las cantamos a tí, Despierta, mi bien**, despierta, mira que ya amaneció, Ya los pajarillos cantan, la luna ya se metió.
Que linda está la mañana en que vengo a saludarte, Venimos todos con gusto y placer a felicitarte, El día en que tu naciste nacieron todas las flores En la pila del bautismo, cantaron los ruiseñores Ya viene amaneciendo, ya la luz del día nos dio, Levántate de mañana, mira que ya amaneció.
Quisiera ser solecito para entrar por tu ventana, y darte los buenos días acostadita en tu cama,
Quisiera ser un San Juan, quisiera ser un San Pedro, Para venirte a cantar con la música del cielo,
De las estrellas del cielo tengo que bajarte dos, una para saludarte y otra para decirte adiós,
Con jasmines y flores hoy te vengo a saludar, Hoy por ser día de tu santo te venimos a cantar.
This is the morning song that King David sang Because today is your saint's day* we're singing it for you Wake up, my dear**, wake up, look it is already dawn The birds are already singing and the moon has set
How lovely is the morning in which I come to greet you We all came with joy and pleasure to congratulate you The day you were born all the flowers were born On the baptismal font the nightingales sang The morning is coming now, the sun is giving us its light Get up in the morning, look it is already dawn
I would like to be the sunshine to enter through your window to wish you good morning while you're lying in your bed
I would like to be a Saint John I would like to be a Saint Peter To sing to you with the music of heaven
Of the stars in the sky I have to lower two for you One with which to greet you and the other to wish you goodbye
With jasmines and flowers we come to greet you Because today is your saint’s day, we come to sing to you
* Can be substituted with the phrase a las muchachas bonitas (to all the lovely girls)
** Often replaced with the name of the birthday person
Las Mananitas – Videos
Here are a couple of versions of this popular birthday song. You will also find a karaoke version.
A ranchera version performed by this popular singer.
Pop version by Mexican singer Tatiana
In this version – the phrase hoy por ser dia de tu santo is replaced by hoy por ser tu cumpleaños (because today is your birthday).