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Today celebrates Ricardo Daniel “Chiqui” Pereyra, the legendary Rionegrin singer. Do you know his story? Did you know that tango took him by surprise?
Ricardo “Chiqui” Pereyra was born in Patagonia, in General Roca, province of Rio Black. Although today he is known as a tanguero, the beginnings of “Chiqui” in music were in folklore. He used to join folk groups before participating in the television show that made him famous as a tango singer. In fact, if you listen to the story in Ricardo's mouth, you realize he 's actually tanguero by chance.
In 1978, when he was 26, Pereyra was about to go to work with Comodoro because he couldn't find work there for his payments. It was then that Silvio Soldán, the conductor of Great values of tango traveled to Rio Black to look for young people who wanted to sign up for the singers contest. Ricardo won a place to go to Buenos Aires and was presented on Channel 9 for his participation on June 14 of that year. The theme he prepared was “Follow the Corsican” and he had so much, but so successful that the managers of the channel removed him from the competition and hired him! Ricardo exceeded the level of competition .
Ricardo recently spoke to Radio Nacional about that moment: “It was surprising from the first moment I was called to come,” he said, referring to Buenos Aires, “because I was not a singer of tangos. He integrated folkloric groups, mainly vocals, where my voice didn't look much obviously because there were four other voices, which with their volume covered more, with that sound that was used before and they grabbed all the attention of the people.”
Even so many years later, Ricardo seems surprised at his own tour: “I am a guy who was born backwards in music. Because I arrived at the age of 26 and when I got there I met all the monsters of the 40's, 50's and my I was recording a... the old long play, and I sang the truth that I didn't understand any of the tangos, nor could I take what they say in the hand. Because he ignored the whole history of tango and also many of the reasons for which the tangos were expressed”. And he still remembers, and in his voice there is some gratitude, who “armed” him as a tango singer, and talks about how Armando Pontier and Roberto Grela helped him to see what was the tessitura and coloratura of his voice, because at that time he didn't even know in what tone he had to sing.
Ricardo spent many years in Buenos Aires, but he still defines himself as “provincial”: “My music was folkloric music, meetings they were all like that. And suddenly, they bring me to an unknown world and begin to present me poets like Homero Expósito, musicians like Atilio Stampone, Raúl Garello, like so many others... (...) and I begin to discover Buenos Aires through their music . I was always very impressed by the big city, more like a provincial.I was filled with poetry much more . of everything I saw in the tangos.” He met “poets”, as he defines them, as Homero Manzi and Homero Expósito who made him fall in love with this music.
Pereyra spent almost fifteen years on Channel 9. It was presented in the most important scenarios of Capital Federal. He toured inside and abroad. In 1995 he won the Konex Prize as a male tango singer.It proliferated in records and shows, and — to this day — says he's sorry that there isn't a good tango show on TV, to spread what the musicians are doing .
Ricardo continues to fulfill his years and continues with much to give. He is preparing his latest album since November last year. I did not manage to find the original video of the presentation of Chiqui in Grandes valores del tango, but I found this jewel on Youtube several years later, where he sings the song that launched him to fame .
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Publication Date: 26/06/2020
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