1983, December 25 – ARMANDO PONTIER COMMITS SUICIDE

Perhaps his tragic ending was somehow foretold in his moving, heart wrenching music; tangos like “Trenzas”, “Corazon No Le Hagas Caso”, “Cada Dia Te Estrano Mas”; he was to compose many beloved tangos in his career…Armando Pontier was born on August 29, 1917 (Virgo) in the town of Zarate just outside of Buenos Aires to a very poor family…his dream was to play piano but that was too expensive; one day, to the thrill of young Armando, his father showed up with a bargain bandoneon which he had bought from a street vendor for a few pesos…with considerable sacrifice, he enrolled him in the Juan Ehlert music school where he befriended two other boys who themselves would become legends of tango, Enrique Francini and Hector Stamponi…

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All three were invited by maestro Ehlert to play in his personal musical ensemble…it is with Francini that he forms his first orchestra…their major break came when they were invited to play for the grand opening of Tango Bar on September 1, 1945…a key event in his career occurred when Radio Belgrano invited him form a staff orchestra; he was to have a 10 year-long association with that station…his period with the Miguel Calo orchestra was an especially fecund one for him, producing some of his most important work…he was especially smitten with the culture of Japan; he made two successful tours there…fourteen of his compositions in collaboration  with Anibal Troilo, were recorded by Roberto Goyeneche….depression was a problem that he had battled with for many years; for mysterious reasons, the pain of existence was difficult for him to bear…on Christmas Day of 1983, this time he was not able to silence the voices that haunted him and he took his own life…about tango he was to say, “tango is no accident…a person who loves tango, had tango in him when he was still in his mother’s womb”

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  1. Sad day… The composer of some of my favorite tangos, including Cada día te extraño más (not estrano ;)) and co-leader of one of the most underrated and underplayed orchestras, Francini-Pontier…

  2. Jaimito…I could not agree with you more…his tangos are also among my favorites and as a human being he was special…thank you for commenting…oscar

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