Monday, July 23, 2007

New Info on Gaston Bueno Lobo

Just recently an interesting article on Gastón Bueno Lobo has been written in Portuguese and translated into English by Daniella Thompson at the Musica Brasiliensis website, also posted at her web log. The article is by Jorge Mello, a Brazilian researcher and musician; use the link above to read the article.
Earlier we have benefited from Mello's research in our published article on
Bueno Lobo
through the always helpful assistance of Daniella Thompson. The mentioned article by Jorge Mello, however, has some interesting new details regarding the bio of Bueno Lobo that should be added to the info already published at our website devoted to the subject.
Firstly, Jorge Mello has traced Bueno Lobo's year of birth - he was born 1891 in the city of Campos, Rio de Janeiro. However, no info about his family, relations and musical education has been available, nor has info about how long he lived in Campos.
Secondly, after much exertion Jorge Mello has managed to obtain a copy of Bueno Lobo’s official death certificate of June 3th, 1939 that states the cause of death as by ingestion of hydrochloric acid, presumably following a successfull suicidial attempt. This official statement of Lobo's death confirms the info given by Oscar Alemán, who mentioned in interviews that Lobo comitted suicide after returning to Brazil. However, the motive of Lobo's suicide is unknown and therefore still a subject open for speculations. Jorge Mello only touches indirectly on a possible motive by mentioning that Lobo's profession as a musician was declining after 1938, as his name appeared less and less frequently in the public media from around that time.

December 1927
Jorge Mello's article has more details about Bueno Lobo's career after the breakup of Les Loups in 1931 that will be quoted later in a revised issue of our website devoted to Lobo. Here it is sufficient mentioning that Bueno Lobo had returned to Brazil in 1932 and was already performing at radio in May of that year. Later the same year he participated as performer, accompanist, or composer in four records released by Odeon. The following years had more radio work and recordings, and judging from Mello's article Bueno Lobo's career was rather successful until 1938. However, as mentioned above, from around 1938-39 his name became less known in the public, which may be a motive of his suicide in 1939.
The biography and career of Gastón Bueno Lobo is interesting, from our point-of-view the interest was caught by the fact that parts of this story interfer with the bio and career of Oscar Alemán. Bueno Lobo is a crucial person in our knowledge of the formative years of Oscar Alemán, moreover Bueno Lobo seemed to have had a deep impact on the Psychological habitus of Oscar right up till the end of his life in 1980. However, these aspects will be discussed later in a revised article on Bueno Lobo.

This contribution will also be posted at the Keepswinging blogspot.


Friday, July 20, 2007

Oscar Aleman Uñero

Oscar Aleman, the Argentine guitar player, has a special place in our hearts. With the Oscar Aleman web log and websites we hope to please the true admirers of his music. The Oscar Aleman Discography can be of help for record collectors if they are searching for a special recording. If we have news about Oscar Aleman you will read it here !!
I found an interesting picture that was titled Oscar Aleman - Uñero and it looks like a kind of ring. As my knowledge of the Spanish language is marginal I used the Español-Ingéls Diccionario and learned that the word Uñero has several meanings: 1. Whitlow. 2. Ingrowing toenail 3. Thumb notch. (How did he come up with such things? Find out yourself, I'd suggest !!). None of it seems suitable with this image. Even my always-on-the-other-side-of-the-line Argentine friend and oracle Luis didn't knew the word. The word Uñeta, however, means in Chile plectrum, so we decided that this ring should be the thumb plectrum of Oscar Aleman
To prove our point I enlarged part of the first image, where you can see Oscar Aleman playing his guitar. You can see the plectrum or Uñero around the thumb of his right hand.
This contribution was also posted as part of the Keep swinging web log.
Keep swinging
Hans Koert

Monday, July 16, 2007

Picture Homage to Oscar Alemán

I detected two recently uploaded videos at YouTube paying tribute to Oscar Alemán. The footage seems to be copied from Hernán Gaffet's documentary, 'Una Vida con Swing' (2002), but if you don't have access to this, here is an opportunity to have a view of some historical footage from the career of Oscar Alemán. Hope you to enjoy the two inserted videos!

The first video features the tune 'Bésame Mucho' by OA y su Cinco caballeros

The second video features the tune 'Temptation' by OA y su Quinteto de Swing


Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Hernán Oliva

When Oscar Alemán founded his first Quinteto de Swing late 1940, the ensemble consisted of Alemán as leader, arranger and solo guitarist, Dario "El Johnny" Quaglia on rhythm guitar, Andrés Alvarez on string bass, Ramon M. Caravaca on drums, and Guillermo Hernán Oliva on violin - the only other member of the group to be given solo space besides Oscar. Between November 1941 and November 1942 the quintet recorded 10 sides for Odeon, and if you listen carefully to the solo spots given to the violin, you will recognise a sound more like Joe Venuti than Stephane Grappelly and a talented improviser of the instrument. Hernán Oliva definitely belongs to the great swing violinists, and his recorded work with Alemán remains highlights of his career. Unfortunately, Oliva and Alemán stopped their cooporation in 1943 due to an incompatibility of temper, and they only recorded once more together in 1954 at a concert arranged by the Hot Club de Buenos Aires.
For details on the recordings of Alemán and Oliva, please consult the online Alemán discography, to be reached clicking here
Hernán Oliva was born 4 July 1913 in Valpariso, Chile. He was a self-taught musician and played popular music in Chile before moving in 1935 to Argentina. In Argentina he was a member of René Cospito's orchestra (1935-40), and during the following years he worked with Enrique Villegas (1940), Oscar Alemán (1940-43) and Ray Ventura's orchestra (1944). In 1944-46 he performed and recorded as a soloist in a group led by Louis Vola emulating the original QHCF. Later he worked as a sideman with Ahmed Ratip y sus Cotton Pickers (1947-55), as a leader (to 1967), and as a member of a swing quintet that made several recordings in the 1970s for the Redondel label. He continued to perform into the late 1980s.

The legacy of both Oscar Alemán and Hernán Oliva is kept well alive in Argentina. July 23th a homage to Hernán Oliva will be presented in Buenos Aires at a concert featuring contemporary groups that continue the great string swing tradition. Among the participating ensembles are Hot Club de Boedo, a group specializing in the musical legacy of Alemán and Oliva. Learn more about the mentioned homage concert at the blogspot of Hot Club de Boedo
To give you an impression of the music played by Hot Club de Boedo I insert a video performance from a concert in Buenos Aires 23 June this year. Enjoy "In The Mood"


This message is also posted at the keepswinging blogspot