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Musician, pianist, leader and composer
(January 27, 1905 - January 24, 1973)
Full Name: Ricardo Tanturi
Nickname: El caballero del tango
Though he never stood out for his musical skills, Tanturi led -for several decades- a renown orchestra which owed its success basically to the strong appeal of some of its singers. For this reason, the instrumental pieces played by his mediocre orchestra are few and little recalled. However, his fame would persist along time and in the last years with the success of tango dancing, Tanturi recordings are perhaps the favorite. Moreover, some of his recordings have become classics.
Of Italian parents, Ricardo Tanturi was born in Buenos Aires, at Barracas neighborhood, one of the poorest and most vital areas in the city surrounded by the now foul-smelling Riachuelo (small river) where boats and barges used to sail. He studied his first instrument -the violin- with Francisco Alessio, uncle of the famous bandoneon player and director Enrique Alessio. His brother Antonio Tanturi, pianist and co-director of the Orquesta Típica Tanturi-Petrone, convinced him to give up the violin and take piano lessons with him.
In 1924 Ricardo started his artistic career, playing the piano at clubs, charity festivals, and jointly with his brother, at LOY Radio Nacional (then called Belgrano); none of this prevented him from studying Medicine and graduating with very good marks. At the university he organized student bands. There he met the actor Juan Carlos Thorry who would then be his first singer, and many of the musicians who would join his orchestra.
In 1933 he formed a sextet to perform at cinemas and theaters. He named it "Los Indios" after a polo team. That would be the name of all his subsequent groups. His opening tango at all his performances was the so called "Los indios" composed by Francisco Canaro but as curious as it may be, he never recorded it.
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