Archive for the ‘ Orchestras ’ Category

1946, April 1 – DEBUT OF “GLOSTORA TANGO CLUB”

A small, simple ad appeared in the “El Mundo” newspaper that day, “At 8 PM tonight, Maestro Alfredo De Angelis with his singers Carlos Dante and Julio Martel on a new program, ‘El Glostora Tango Club’, for the victorious youth, the hair gel of a grand world within reach of the whole world”…it is doubtful that its creators realized that their brief, fifteen minute experiment following a very popular mystery series, would one day blossom into a legendary institution which would have a run of twenty-two years…it featured the Alfredo De Angelis Orchestra for the first five years and there after it would host the most renown orchestras and singers; Francisco Canaro, Miguel Calo, Juan D’arienzoArmando Pontier, Enrique FranciniOsvaldo Pugliese to name just a few…its theme song for all those years would remain the pasodoble “Amor Gitano” composed by the renown Feliciano Brunelli…its proud sponsor was the Glostora Hair Gel whose target market was young people; for these were the times when tango was the preferred music of the youth, “just four drops  and you will have victorius hair” it repeated to them over and over again…

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Hosted by Rafael Diaz Gallardo and Lucia Marcò, in its debut Alfredo De Angelis played three tangos “La Brisa”, “Misa De Once”, and “Sonar y Nada Mas” his great waltz hit which had premiered three years earlier….transmitting from the Casino Theater it was a live transmission with a large studio audience…the program became so popular that entire familys awaited its inception and they would eagerly crowd around the radio; grown men would remember with great nostalgia, that special day when their fathers’ would take them to the theater to be part of the studio audience…this was a period when Buenos Aires was teeming with milongas and orchestras every night...”for more and better stylish hair, Glostora…for more and better tangos Glostora Tango Club” was one of the jingles which listeners would know by heart…Tango’s history is closely intertwined with radio; they had a symbiotic relationship supporting each other in their respective development…in radio’s nascent days, musicians performed for free but they could count on copious amounts of food and wine…Rosita Quiroga was probably the first soloist on radio but she became equally famous for the ravioli she cooked for her fellow musicians in Radio Belgrano’s kitchens

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CLICK HERE– http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cUnHRlNbyZE to hear the first transmission of the Glostora Tango Club; Carlos Dante with the Alfredo De Angelis Orchestra sings “La Brisa”

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1920, March 30 – BIRTH OF RAUL BERON

Singer (Airies) – Raul Beron is considered by many as the best tango voice in history and yet in the eyes of cognoscenti, Jose his older brother, had the talent surpass his legendary brother but preferred the bohemian night life …but it wasn’t only these two brothers but the whole family that seemed particularly gifted…their sister Elba for example, would record several hits with the Anibal Troilo Orchestra….they  were the children of Adolfo Manuel Beron, a guitarist and composer who encouraged his children to play and sing; theirs was a household visited by Adolfo’s musician and artist friends….their first taste of stardom occurred when Adolfo organized his five children into “Los Portenitos” which began singing in the cafes of their home town of Zarate…Raul Beron was only ten years old when he formed a duo with his brother Jose; they debuted at the Kity Dance Cabaret in Montevideo  to great acclaim; they were soon singing on the prestigious Radio Belgrano…Raul came to the ear of Jose Razzano who became his mentor and in fact in time Raul developed a Gardelian, baritone style like his hero Carlos Gardel…

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His major break came when Miguel Calo asked him to join his orchestra; he was nineteen years old…his debut at the Club Dancing Singapur was met with to ecstatic applause…on April 29, 1942 he recorded “Al Compas del Corazon” a phenomenal hit; within a span of five months two other hits were to follow, “Lejos de Buenos Aires” and the milonga “Azabache”..the next year he appeared in his first film “Todo Un Hombre”  directed by Pierre Chenal who had narrowly escaped nazi occupied France to move to Argentina…Beron later had brief stints with the orchestras of Lucio Demare and Francini – Pontier with whom he recorded another hit “Remolino”…later he joined the revered Anibal Troilo Orchestra with which he would produce several popular recordings and sing in the film “Mi Noche Triste”…it is interesting to note that in his lifetime he was not as popular as singers like Fiorentino, Rufino and Marino and yet with the passing of time it is Raul Beron who aquires legendary status…..on June 28, 1982 he was scheduled sing at the “Cafe De Los Angelitos” but when his wife went into the bedroom to get him, she found him dead; like his brother Jose and his sister Elba he died relatively young of a heart attack

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1951, March 29 – OSMAR MADERNA’S LAST RECORDING

Saturday afternoon had finally arrived, it was a day he looked forward to all week, his flying day….Osmar Maderna had two loves in his life, music and flying his Eurosocpe 415 CD, a passion he shared with his contemporary Osvaldo Fresedo….the skies over Lomas de Zamora was especially limpid and his fellow pilots were exuberant…flying 200 meters in the air Osmar playfully oscillated the wings at an adjacent pilot as he had done many times before only this time his wing hit the wing of the adjacent plane causing it to lose lift, spiral and hit the ground in a fiery crash…Osmar Maderna, the “Chopin of Tango”, at the pinnacle of his career, was dead at the age of thirty-three years old; just one month earlier he had made his twentieth recording at the RCA Victor Studios…Osmar Maderna was the eighth child of a poor immigrant family in the village of Huajo, Argentina…his father who was a musician was his first piano teacher…from early on young Osmar demonstrated an unusual sensitivity and gift for music…his love of Chopin showed in his subtle, ethereal, romantic touch; at the age of thirteen he put together his first group calling it “Vitaphone”…

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At the age of 20  he arrived in Buenos Aires where he performed on the radio as a soloist playing classical music and some tango…the young prodigy began developing a name for himself; that year he was invited by Miguel Calo to join his orchestra…here he came in contact with three young would-be greats Enrique FranchiniArmando Pontier and Domingo Federico…in 1945 he started start his own orchestra and debuted at the mythical Marzotto Cafe later earning performances at Tango Bar and Radio Belgrano…one year later, he made his first recording, the beautiful instrumental “Chiquè” …some of his most beloved compositions include  ”LLuvia de Estrellas” which shows his love of Chopin’s waltzes and nocturnes and “Concierto En La Luna” which reflects his love of flying but his biggest hit was the waltz “Pequena” with the voice of Hector de Rosas…it was such a massive hit that in the first few months alone there were more than 120 different renditions by different artists…he starred in the film “Al Compas de Tu Mentira” and is credited with having started “Tango Fantasia”

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watch?v=AsdliPd9cFQ to hear the Alfredo de Angelis perform Osmar Maderna’s greatest hit “Pequena” with lyrics by Homero Exposito and the voice of Carlos Dante

1901, March 27 – BIRTH OF ENRIQUE SANTOS DISCEPOLO

Poet, Composer (Aires) – the best doctors of Buenos Aires were mystified… they had no explanation for the strange infection that was slowly withering away the body of Enrique Santos Discepolo….the truth was that he was dying of a broken heart…he had become ostracized for being a Peronista by his friends and fellow artists….they refused to speak with him, he was hooted in theaters and whistled in restaurants, pranks to embarrass the staging of his plays were not uncommon; he went into a deep depression and lost his appetite….but from the very beginning of his career it was the injustice and suffering around him which were precisely the themes of his legendary tangos “Que Vachachè”,  ”Yira, Yira”, “Calambache” which had made them popular all over the world…in his immensely popular radio commentary he said it all in his refrain, “I did not invent Juan Peron, he was born out of your corrupt governments, out of the misery of the poor whom you massacred, out of your cruelty and arrogance”…on 23 December 1951, at 11:20 pm the great poet and composer finally released the grip of the hand of his dear friend Osvaldo Miranda and died; he was fifty years old…

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Enrique Santos Discepolo was born in the neighborhood of “Once” in Buenos Aires to an immigrant father from Napoli who was an accomplished musician…nevertheless, both he and his wife died when Enrique was very young…he was left to the care of a rich, austere uncle who made him wear a tuxedo to dinner; in time a genius would emerge who not only wrote the lyrics to his tangos but the music as well, albeit with two fingers on the piano as he had no formal musical training…at the age of sixteen he began acting in his older brother’s plays…the first glimmer of greatness broke through in 1928 when Azucena Maizani sang his “Esta Noche Me Emborracho”…just days later it was popular all over the country; it soon caught on in Europe as well…this was also the year that he met Spanish singer Tania who would become his wife and life’s companion to the end of his days…his great masterpiece, ”Cambalache” had the peculiar privilege of being banned by all military dictatorships after 1943…Carlos Gardel’s recording of his “Yira, Yira” in 1930 is considered one of the greatest events in tango history…his collaboration with composer Mariano Mores would produce the immortal “Uno” which has been called the national anthem of tango…

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watch?v=PGVXtCCR9pk to hear Virginia Luque sing Discepolo’s “Sueno de Juventud” for which he wrote both the music and the lyrics

1936, March 26 – PREMIERE OF FILM “CANILLITA”

Florencio Sanchez, eighteen years old, dreamt of marrying his sweetheart but his job as a journalist just barely provided enough to live on and when he went to see his sweetheart was embarrassed to put on, his one and only threadbare suit…watching the rascally, mischievous, bold newspaper boys jumping off and on the trams shouting the headlines to passengers and passersby, he was inspired to write a play; “Canillita” which referred to the long thin legs on which they scurried about…to his astonishment, when it was premiered on October 1, 1902, it was not only immensely popular but would capture the imagination of the world inspiring similar characters all over the world….Astor Piazzolla, for example, would play newspaper boy “Canillita” in Carlos Gardel’s film “El Dia Que Me Quieras”…instead the film “Canillita” premiering on March 26, 1936, is a musical comedy in which a young girl falls in love with a singer and elects to runaway with him rather than marrying a store keeper to whom she is promised…

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Directed by Lisandro De La Tea it stars singers Amanda Ledesma, Sabina Olmos and Principe Azul…it features Pedro Maffia and his orchestra playing the theme tango “Canillita” which was composed by Julio Cesar Sanders…Amanda Ledesma was a simple shop girl who loved to sing who reluctantly entered a singing contest and won which launched a long and glorious career…this was the first film for Sabina Olmos; thirty more would follow and she would marry legendary singer Charlo…however, years later, Charlo now dead and she penniless and all but forgotten, she would take her own life by jumping from a high story building…Principe Azul was a highly paid singer and the powerful star making machine of the United States had selected him as the new Carlos Gardel; in fact he was on his way to New York to sign a contract with NBC, when he was suddenly struck with a serious illness which swiftly took his life just two days short of his 34th birthday

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letra.aspx?idletra=3023 to hear another inspiration, “Canillita, Canillita” performed by the Francisco Pracanico Orchestra with the voice of Sofia Bozan, 1928

1948, March 24 – 1ST RECORDED, “UNA CARTA PARA ITALIA”

“Shameless propaganda !” was how this tango was angrily described by its detractors…it was in fact propaganda for the Juan Peron regime…composer of “Una Carta Para Italia” Santos Lipseker was not only a prodigious and accomplished composer but a good businessman…however he was also known for his generosity, it was not uncommon for him to take the whole orchestra to dinner…the lyrics of “Una Carta Para Italia”, written by poet Reinaldo Yiso, are a letter from a young man to his mother back in Italy in which he describes how life is so much better in Argentina than in poor Italy all designed to sing the praises of Juan Peron’s governance…it is true that when Juan Peron came to power, for a brief period, the economy of Argentina went through a dramatic revival; in the 1920s Argentina had been the eighth richest country in the world only to crumble through a combination of the great depression and military dictatorship from which it has never recovered

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“Una Carta Para Italia” was recorded by the Francini-Pontier Orchestra with the voice of  Roberto Ruffino…Enrique Francini and Armando Pontier were both born in the town of Zarate, 100 kilometers north of Buenos Aires…in 1939 they began their careers together with the newly formed Miguel Calo Orchestra…six years later they debuted their own orchestra at the mythical “Tango Bar” with two young voices which in time would evolve, arguably, into the two greatest singers in tango history, Raul Beron and Alberto Podestà…along with Roberto Ruffino all three would see great success with Francini – Pontier…less known is the fact that Ruffino besides being a great singer was also a composer and lyricist; among his compositions are “El Bazarde los Jugetes” which would be made into a hit by Alberto Podestà in the mid 50s…Armando Pontier was the composer of some of the most beautiful tangos in history like “Trenzas”, “Corazon No Le Hagas Caso” and “Cada Dia Te Estrano Mas”…on Christmas Day of 1983, no longer able to silence the voices that haunted, he took his own life

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CLICK HERE– http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ErLnFXnAxEo to hear “Una Carta Para Italia” which interestingly opens with the classic Neapolitan song “Santa Lucia”

1898, March 23 – BIRTH OF FRANCISCO DE CARO

Composer, Pianist (Aries) – it typified his life that lying on the hospital bed with the oxygen mask over his emaciated face, he was more concerned for the family of his dear friend, bandoneonist Gabriel Clausi “Chula” than for himself, “take care of them, look after them Chula”, he insisted…just a few minutes later, he passed away; he was 78 years old…Francisco De Caro had been the creative arm of the legendary team with his brother Julio de Caro; together they revolutionized the way tango was written and interpreted, founding the “Guardia Nueva” movement…many years later Astor Piazzolla would honor their contribution with his composition “Decarissimo”…the great fame that his brother Julio would attain was in no small part due to Francisco’s artistic leadership displayed in compositions like “Sueno Azul” and “Paginas Muertas”; Julio was headstrong, entrepreneurial and famously difficult to deal with…Francisco was the eldest of twelve children born to Giuseppe de Caro De Sica (an ancestor of legendary film director Vittoriio De Sica”)…

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Giuseppe had been the director of the conservatory of the prestigious “Teatro della’Scala de Milano” and commensurate with his august background he dreamed of  seeing his sons in the rarefied world of classical music; he was Francisco’s first piano teacher…however unbeknownst to the authoritarian Giuseppe, the boys began sharing their classical musical skills with the seedy world of tango…when Julio was nineteen years old, his father confronted him one dawn as he was returning from a gig and gave him the choice of either continuing with serious studies or leaving the house; Julio chose to leave the house and his brother Francisco followed him soon after…their estrangement would only end twenty years later when their father would show up at one of their performances and with tears in his eyes asked for forgivenesses…in 1923 the brothers formed their first quartet and began playing at the mythical Cafe Colon…they would eventually embark on a very successful tour of Europe during which they entertained dignitaries including  Charlie Chaplain and Baron Von Rothschild

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CLICK HERE – http://www.youtube.com/
watch?v=SSZY161Xtz8 to hear the Osvaldo Fresedo version of “Sueno Azul” composed by Francisco De Caro