This weblog will give you information about the "El Redescubrimiento de Oscar Aleman" project, the "Rediscovering of Oscar Aleman" project.
Oscar Aleman ( 1909 - 1980 )was an Argentinean jazz guitar player, entertainer and showman, born in Argentina, lived in Europe (1930s)and returned to Argentina ( 1940 - 1980 ).
He was one of the best jazz guitar players of his time.
Sunday, June 12, 2016
Oscar Alemán - Background Of An Updated 'Online Discography'
Georg Lankestergives his account of the background of a recently published new onlineOscar Alemándiscography.
news for jazzguitar fans – a publication by Andrés “Tito” Liber
Argentinian swing guitar legendOscar Alemán(1909 – 1980) was for a
long time a somewhat neglected figure and in jazz reference literature hardly
presented in printed standard discographies - most likely – because much of his
recorded output was unavailable or hard to find outside Argentina
However, it is worthwhile to mention that Alemán
made several recordings in Europe
during the 1930s joining European and American jazz musicians in Paris while he
stayed in France as a member of Josephine Baker’s orchestra. This
small recorded output by Alemán (playing with jazzmen such as Freddy Taylor,
Bill Coleman, Alix Combelle, Danny Polo and others) may be known by
well-informed jazz fans of the European swing era and the recordings also have
been available on various long playing albums and later in CD format.
Alemán only recorded a few sides in his own name during his European
stay. Four sides were recorded by the French “Swing” label, established and
promoted by the secretary of the Hot Club of France, Charles
latter was one of the leading persons within this jazz organisation and he
introduced American jazz musicians to a European audience. Moreover he was also
the single most important figure to promote the gypsy guitaristDjango
Reinhardt. In fact Delaunay was the originator of the famous “Quintette
du Hot Club de France” featuring Django Reinhardt and Stéphane Grappelli as star
soloists in a jazz setting formed by string instruments only. This was a
novelty jazz formation creating a hot swinging jazz sound never heard before and
the only original European pre-war contribution to the legacy of jazz in general.
Delaunay’s promotion of Reinhardt and the
quintet made it almost impossible for other jazz guitarists in Paris to
establish reputation and make records. And that’s the reason why the average jazz audience was mostly unaware
of Alemán being another brilliant jazz guitarist in town at the same high level
Although Oscar was always overshadowed by
Reinhardt in the Parisian jazz scene, the
jazz criticLeonard Feather, who – in 1939 - wrote a much quoted review in the
“Melody Maker” on Oscar’s recordings, stressed that Alemán could ‘outswing’
Django and was a far superior jazzman .
Oscar Alemán in action - 1960s
enough Alemán and Reinhardt became friends with mutual respect for each other,
being ‘instrument brothers’ and they met from time to time. Late at night, when
each had finished work, muscians used to meet in certain Parisian places in
order to chat and play together. It is a fact that Django and Oscar
jammed together, but unfortunately those sessions were never recorded.
Jazz Solography, vol. 4
European Alemán recordings are included inBrian Rust’s well-known reference
work “Jazz Records 1897 – 1942”as
well as in other standard discographies. In the
Seventies, the Norwegian jazz critic Jan Evensmo made a fair review of
Alemán’s European jazz records in one of
his publications in the “Jazz Solography” series.
Evensmo, however, would resume his research of Alemán recordings and has
launched a new edition of his Alemán solography a few years ago which now
contains the Argentinian recorded output besides the European recordings,
available online, here
In the same decade (1970s) the TOM label
(“The Old Masters”) was launched in the US supported by enthousiastic jazz
collectors. Two LP albums were dedicated to Alemán, covering a selection of his recordings
Oscar Alemán - Frémeaux CD (1994)
recent (in 1994) an Alemán cd was issued by the French Frémeaux label which
includes recordings from 1928-1943 with detailed liner notes. Further was the
TOM selection with additional material reissued on a double CD disc in 1997 by
basis of a complete Alemán Discograpy
It wasHans Koert,an acknowledged Dutch
jazz specialist and collector, highly
fascinated by Alemán’s work, who laid the foundation of a Discography as
complete as possible. During several years of thorough research he traced several Alemán records made outside Europe and he
even contacted the family of the guitarist in order to obtain more relevant
Hans Koert's Tune-o-Graphy
2002 Hans published hisAlemán “Tune-o-Graphy” (a printed version in English
& Spanish) realised in cooperation withLuis Contijoch. He resumed his Discography
research in 2004 which was finished in 2009 with a web log publication in 2006. Hans continued his immense study and further
published his work in a comprehensive and free accessible internetonline Alemán Discographywhich he kept updated till he passed away in 2014.
On basis of the main data obtained by Hans
Koert, the Argentinian collector Andrés
‘Tito’ Liber- in cooperation with the present editor of Hans Koert’s website and blogs - added data and recently finished this update which is now
available on the Internet. An obstacle for the average visitor of Liber’s
online discography may be the Spanish
language, but serious users probably will cope with that.
This NEW online discographybyAndrés ‘Tito’
Liber is accessible by following the link in the sidebar at the weblog of
Hot Club de Boedo, here
this new online resource and discover more of the great swing guitarist Oscar Alemán