Oscar Aleman
Ritmo Loco - El Rey de la Guitarra Swing
SAG0072
2011-02-15
 Ritmo Loco - El Rey de la Guitarra Swing by Oscar Aleman cover

buy Download iTunes

Track List: listen

Dulce Georgia Brown - 3:13
Caminos Cruzados - 2:34
Limehouse Blues - 2:47
Me Has Enamorado - 3:04
Me Voy De Fiesta Al Campo (Goin\' To The Country Fair) - 2:38
Improvisaciones Sobre Boogie Woogie - 2:46
Apanhei-Te, Cavaquinho - 2:27
O Vestido de Bolero - 2:54
Cielos Azules (Blue Skies) - 2:32
Diga, Diga, Doo - 2:55
Pé De Manaca - 2:58
Ritmo Loco (Crazy Rhythm) - 2:30
Tengo Ritmo - 2:36
Saudades - 3:13
St. Louis Blues - 4:14
Nadie Me Ama - 3:07
Nada Mas Que un Poquito de Swing - 3:00
Tonderias - 2:58
Ardiente Sol - 2:51
Milonga Triste - 3:00
Casi Negro - 2:41
Casi Bueno - 3:31
De Buen Humor - 3:18
Oscarinadas - 2:29

 

Musicians:
"01 Dulce Georgia Brown (Sweet Georgia Brown) (B. Bernie, M. Pinkard, K. Casey) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU QUINTETO DE SWING: Hernan Oliva (vln); Oscar Alemán, Dario Quaglia (g); Andres Alvarez (b); Ramon Caravaca (d).
Buenos Aires, 21 Nov. 1941.

02 Caminos Cruzados (Crossroads) (E. Lecuano) Odeon (Arg)

03 Limehouse Blues (D. Furber, P. Braham) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU QUINTETO DE SWING: Manuel Gavinovich (vln); Oscar Alemán (g); Ceferino Albuquerque (p); Guillermo Barbieri (g); Luis Gavinovich (b); Ramon Caravaca (d).
Buenos Aires, 2 May 1944.

04 Me Has Enamorado (You Made Me Love You) (J.M. Monaco, J. McCarthy) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU QUINTETO DE SWING: Manuel Gavinovich (vln); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Ceferino Albuquerque (p); Guillermo Barbieri (g); Luis Gavinovich (b); Ramon Caravaca (d).
Buenos Aires, 27 June 1944.

05 Me Voy de Fiesta al Campo (Goin' to the Country Fair) (H. Warren) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU QUINTETO DE SWING: Manuel Gavinovich (vln); Oscar Alemán (g); Ceferino Albuquerque (p); Guillermo Barbieri (g); Luis Gavinovich (b); Ramon Caravaca (d).
Buenos Aires, 30 Aug. 1944.

06 Improvisaciones Sobre Boogie Woogie (O. Alemán) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU QUINTETO DE SWING: Manuel Gavinovich (vln); Charles Wilson (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Guillermo Barbieri (g); Luis Gavinovich (b); Ramon Caravaca (d).
Buenos Aires, 22 Jan.1945.

07 Apanhei, Te, Cavaquinho (E. Nazareth) Odeon
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU QUINTETO DE SWING: Manuel Gavinovich (vln); Charles Wilson (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Guillermo Barbieri (g); Luis Gavinovich (b); Ramon Caravaca (d).
Buenos Aires, 24 July 1945.

08 O Vestido de Bolero (D. Caymmi) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU QUINTETO DE SWING: Manuel Gavinovich (vln); Charles Wilson (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Guillermo Barbieri (g); Luis Gavinovich (b); Ramon Caravaca (d).
Buenos Aires, 4 Dec. 1945.

09 Cielos Azules (Blue Skies) (I. Berlin) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU QUINTETO DE SWING: Manuel Gavinovich (vln); Walter Noseda (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Guillermo Barbieri (g); Luis Gavinovich (b); Ramon Caravaca (d).
Buenos Aires, 25 Jan. 1947.

10 Diga, Diga, Doo (J. McHugh) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU QUINTETO DE SWING: Manuel Gavinovich (vln); Walter Noseda (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Guillermo Barbieri (g); Luis Gavinovich (b); Ramon Caravaca (d).
Buenos Aires, 8 Nov. 1947.

11 Pé de Manacá (H. Cordovil, M. Pinto Coelho) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU CONJUNTO DE JAZZ: Mario Felix (cl); Raul Casanova (vln solo); Carlin Traversa, Julio Grana (vln); Alberto A. Barbera (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Alberto Ramos (g); Aldo ""Nene"" Nicolini (b); José Raguza (d).
Buenos Aires, 10 July 1951.

12 Ritmo Loco (Crazy Rhythm) (I. Caesar, J. Meyer, R.W. Kahn) Odeon
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU CONJUNTO DE JAZZ: Mario Felix (cl); Raul Casanova (vln solo); Carlin Traversa, Julio Grana (vln); Alberto A. Barbera (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Alberto Ramos (g); Aldo ""Nene"" Nicolini (b); José Raguza (d).
Buenos Aires, 17 Sep. 1952.

13 Tengo Ritmo (I Got Rhythm) (G. Gershwin) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU CONJUNTO DE JAZZ: Mario Felix (cl); Raul Casanova (vln solo); Carlin Traversa, Julio Grana (vln); Oscar Alemán (g, voc).
Buenos Aires, 29 Sep. 1952.

14 Saudades (A. de Siano) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU CONJUNTO DE JAZZ: Mario Felix (cl); Raul Casanova (vln solo); Carlin Traversa, Julio Grana (vln); Alberto A. Barbera (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Alberto Ramos (g); Aldo ""Nene"" Nicolini (b); José Raguza (d).
Buenos Aires, 29 Sep. 1952.

15 St. Louis Blues (W.C. Handy) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU CONJUNTO DE JAZZ: Mario Felix (cl); Raul Casanova (vln solo); Carlin Traversa, Julio Grana (vln); Alberto A. Barbera (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Alberto Ramos (g); Aldo ""Nene"" Nicolini (b); José Raguza (d).
Buenos Aires, 30 Jan. 1953.

16 Nadie Me Ama (Ninguem Me Ama) (F. Lobo, A. Maria) Odeon

17 Nada Mas Que un Poquito de Swing (Just a Little Swing) (O. Alemán) Odeon (Arg)

18 Tonterías (R. Casanova, M. Feliz, A.A. Barbera) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU CONJUNTO DE JAZZ: Mario Felix (cl); Raul Casanova (vln solo); Carlin Traversa, Julio Grana (vln); Alberto A. Barbera (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Alberto Ramos (g); Aldo ""Nene"" Nicolini (b); José Raguza (d).
Buenos Aires, 16 Dec. 1953.

19 Ardiente Sol (Burning Sun) (L. Mandarino, R. de Forte) Odeon
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU CONJUNTO DE JAZZ: Mario Felix (cl); Raul Casanova (vln solo); Carlin Traversa, Julio Grana (vln); Alberto A. Barbera (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Alberto Ramos (g); Aldo ""Nene"" Nicolini (b); José Raguza (d).
Buenos Aires, 9 Jan. 1954.

20 Milonga Triste (Sad Milonga) (H. Manzi, S. Piana) Odeon
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU CONJUNTO DE JAZZ: Mario Felix (cl); Raul Casanova (vln solo); Carlin Traversa, Julio Grana (vln); Alberto A. Barbera (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Alberto Ramos (g); Aldo ""Nene"" Nicolini (b); José Raguza (d); Los Huaina-Takis (voc quartet).
Buenos Aires, 30 June 1954.

21 Casi Negro (O. Alemán) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU CONJUNTO DE JAZZ: Mario Felix (cl); Raul Casanova (vln solo); Carlin Traversa, Julio Grana (vln); Alberto A. Barbera (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Alberto Ramos (g); Aldo ""Nene"" Nicolini (b); José Raguza (d).
Buenos Aires, 22 Oct. 1955.

22 Casi Bueno (O. Alemán) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU CONJUNTO DE JAZZ: Mario Felix (cl); Raul Casanova (vln solo); Carlin Traversa, Julio Grana (vln); Alberto A. Barbera (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Alberto Ramos (g); Aldo ""Nene"" Nicolini (b); José Raguza (d).
Buenos Aires, 12 Nov. 1955.

23 De Buen Humor (In the Mood) (A. Razaf, J. Garland) Odeon (Arg)

24 Oscarinadas (O. Alemán) Odeon (Arg)
OSCAR ALEMÁN Y SU CONJUNTO DE JAZZ: Mario Felix (cl); Raul Casanova (vln solo); Carlin Traversa, Julio Grana (vln); Alberto A. Barbera (p); Oscar Alemán (g, voc); Alberto Ramos (g); Aldo ""Nene"" Nicolini (b); José Raguza (d).
Buenos Aires, 17 June 1957.

Oscar Alemman, the anger-aesthetic.
Today it's hard to imagine how difficult it was to be a guitarist in France in the Thirties. It was a time when the genius of Django Reinhardt, quickly recognized and celebrated (rightly so), was putting other enthralling musicians in the shade, among them his own brother, the wonderful Joseph Reinhardt, who pioneered the electric guitar well before his august elder. And there were also the eminent Ferret brothers, Matelot, Baro and Sarane, who always cultivated their difference. But the most captivating — and, no doubt, most mysterious — figure in this shadow-guitarist-army was unquestionably
Oscar Aleman.
Born on February 20th 1909 in a small Argentinean town called Resistencia, Oscar Aleman honourably defended the name of his native town throughout his life: in his own way,he belonged to the Resistance. But his resistance was gentle, that of a pacifist,and his battles,with his fearsome guitar his only weapon, were fought against insignificance and triviality.
His childhood was chaotic, its conditions precarious — his was a large family, and the premature death of his mother was followed by his father's suicide, and his brothers and sisters were placed in orphanages — yet all of this gave Oscar the strength to survive, that special force which is known today,with just a hint of the pretentiousness of that period, as ""resilience"".
With the stubbornness of the self-taught, he learned to play the guitar and the cavaquinho, the little four-string guitar of Brazil that has gone down in posterity with the unforgettable music of the Cape Verde Islands.Was it the choice of such a non-Argentinean instrument that gave his style its strangely Caribbean scent? It's still too early to say. In 1924,amongst a dozen other little jobs, he began playing in little restaurants and cafés. It was in one of them that he was noticed by guitarist Gaston Bueno Lobo,who suggested they play as a duo. Under the name Los Lobos, (or ""the wolves""), the two men experienced the best and the worst that accompanied a success both quick and well-deserved. The best? They recorded many 78's and enjoyed genuine popularity. The worst? Never-ending quarrels, pitched battles even,over money; their stormy relationship ended dramatically: early in the Thirties, Gaston Lobo, back in Argentina, learned that Oscar Aleman, by now a star in Josephine Baker's orchestra,was considered the best Argentinean musician in Europe, and Gaston committed suicide, probably out of resentment.
For things had gone very quickly for Oscar Aleman: hired away by tap-dancer Harry Fleming, in 1931 he joined the band led by Belgian trumpeter Robert de Kers before becoming the star musician with The Baker Boys, the great Josephine Baker's orchestra. In 1933, it was Duke Ellington in person who yielded to the special genius of the Argentinean and offered him a job in his orchestra as a soloist. Josephine, however, like the divinity of the Old Testament, was a jealous god: she had no mind to let go of such an excellent musician, and Oscar was a genuine friend.We can understand her feelings. On the other hand, we can also dream of the splendours that Aleman might have recorded with the greatest big band of all time, Ellington's.
Oscar only officially left Josephine's band in 1938: in the meantime, he'd shone in every cabaret in Paris, duelled with Bill Coleman and Louis Armstrong, refused tempting invitations to return home, travelled from Eastern Europe to sub-Saharan Africa, and, above all, fuelled the front pages thanks to his supposed ""rivalry"" with Django Reinhardt... which was only a legend, largely amplified by a few critics in search of sensation, because it seems that the two guitarists always showed nothing but admiration for each other,even genuine friendship. Indeed, Django, even if he could be something of a tyrant with his familiar partners — his brother Joseph, his cousin Eugčne Vées — made no secret of his admiring respect for guitarists who were much further away from his own universe, like the tender Henri Crolla, or Oscar Aleman in fact. You only have to listen to these two giants to understand that nothing could set them up as competitors with each other: Django's artistry, while pure jazz, confirmed his gypsy ancestry; Oscar's ""stamp"", at ease in all the ""typical"" styles as well as jazz, was unquestionably South- American. And yet certain critics, including the great Leonard Feather,couldn't help contrasting the two men,or even admitting a preference for the racy, stinging swing of the Argentinean.
Oscar really took off in the late Thirties, finally recording under his own name in Stockholm, and doing a few sides, brilliantly, with the awesome accordionist Gus Viseur. This upturn lasted only briefly however, as the war put a brutal stop to it all; Oscar, whose blood had always always been hot, tangled with a Nazi soldier in a Paris street and hurriedly left France via Spain, resolved to return to Argentina.
The next two decades brought him some success, judging by the number of titles he recorded fronting various groups.The content of this anthology is composed of tunes he recorded for Odeon in Buenos Aires. And then Oscar Aleman, who, like all omnivorous gourmets, was never able to choose sides where music was concerned, seemed to tire: the Sixties and Seventies were years of decline, articulated around the number of bottles he emptied without moderation.After a brief return to the studios in 1974, when he recorded two albums, and a few sporadic bookings until 1979, he passed away on October 14th 1980. Until recently, (almost) nobody would remember that he was one of the most extraordinary guitarists of the 20th century.
No-one really knows exactly what determines posterity or oblivion. If you go by the number of times a talent for music manifests itself, then the name of Oscar Aleman should logically be better-known than that of, say, Jimmy Page. But if talent alone could vaccinate against oblivion, we'd know that by now. So there must be other reasons that would explain why Aleman has fallen into such scandalous oblivion for so many years, and most of them seem to have something to do with the complex personality of the fellow. Aleman, you see, enjoyed most of his career on the back of his affability, his jovial nature and his gifts as a showman: there's an especially weird, zany version of Besame Mucho that goes to prove it, as do, in general,all of his Latino-crook hijackings of American standards. Almost everyone listening to him for the first time just cracks up, so infectious is his humour, his chic, his offhand manner. But, like all the irregular greats that Argentina has produced — from Edmundo Rovira and Hugo Diaz to Roberto Grela and Luis Salinas — Carlos also showed true anxiety, neuralgia, and the sort of metaphysical anger that irrigates the imaginations of all Buenos Aires' porteńos, from the tangos of Discepolo to the masterpieces written by Borges. Oscar Aleman, who faithfully played a National steel-guitar model that was otherwise used only by a few bluesmen, succeeded in translating his personal tragedies into hot-tempered solos that were short and, in the end,much more troubling than they were seductive. His musical vocabulary, however,wasn't that complex: major and minor scales, arpeggios, pentatonic scales. But the kind of fury he instilled into each strike of the plectrum, and that peremptory swing which would tolerate no wavering, today seem as many traces of the most archaic kind of anger: that of a man who had to content himself with cultivating his talents,but in the certainty that he possessed genius.A man to whom nobody, in his day, knew how to listen.

Gilles Tordjman

Reviews:

 

Oscar Aleman News

Additional Releases by
Oscar Aleman