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Peron, Perón, how big are you...”

“Peron, Perón, how big are you...”

Argentinian popular music historians Néstor Pinsón and Ricardo García Blaya analyze in an article entitled “The sportive and murguero origin of the peronist march”, where, taking into account the set of existing research and data, they conclude that the music of the Peronist march arises from two different melodies, appeared in the second half of the 1920s.
The melody of the chorus (” Perón , Perón, how great are you... ”) would have arisen from a song by a murga in the workers' neighborhood of La Boca, which had as lyrics:

What babies
if you don't know?
What do you take
if it makes you wrong?
Tomato does
you good!

With regard to the stanzas, Pinsón and García Blaya note that the music derives from the march of Club Barracas Juniors, composed by Juan Raimundo Streiff, bandoneonist and mail employee.

And not only is the music “inspired” from the march of Barracas Juniors, since the lyrics would also have been taken from it, written by a neighbor known as “El turco Mufarri”, specialist in murgas lyrics. It says:

The boys from Barracas
all together will sing
and at the same time give
a hooray of heart.
For those brave boys
who fervently
fought to defend the colors
of this great institution

But research on the origins and copies of this song does not end there. Historians add that the writer Héctor Benedetti states in his book The best anecdotes of tango and other curiosities that the Peronist  march was devised by Norberto Ramos. This pianist and member of the Los Aces quartet and other musical groups recorded, tells the book, the song “Los graphs peronistas”. And, as expected, music is the same as the music of the match march and the lyrics, almost identical.

Pinsón and García Blaya conclude that the source of this information is a report made to Ramos for the magazine La Maga. He said that in 1948, when he was a teenager, his father and fellow colleagues asked him to put music on a march for the Peronist graphic workers because they worked at Atlántida publishing house. They sang the melodies of “ Perón , Perón, how big are you... “and they told the young man that they were melodies taken from “a comparsa” -probably the one written by “The Turk Mufarri”.

Norberto Ramos states in the interview that he fulfilled his assignment with Lauría, secretary of the guild of graphics, who contributed the lyrics. The result of this piece is some stanzas particularly similar to the first phrases of the  Peronist  march that we all know. The only visible difference is that the song recorded by Ramos says: “Peronist graphics, all together we will triumph... “, instead of the popular phrase “the Peronist boys, we all together will triumph... “:

The Peronist graphics
all together we will triumph
and at the same time we will give
a hooray of heart
Viva Perón! Long live Peron!
For that great Argentinean
who knew how
to conquer the great mass of the people
fighting the capital.

However, the authors of the article to which we refer dismiss this theory with well-founded arguments and even claim that Ramos could never prove his words.

As we see, the “inspiration” of one work towards another is nothing new in our beloved Argentina and the intention to award the work and talent of others, either. It is interesting to reflect on the number of musicians and composers - professional or not - who could be assigned the authorship of this popular march. The truth is that thanks to the contribution of Pinsón and García Blaya we can have a clearer idea about the origins of this song and the reasons why it is so catchy, whether or not we are followers of Peronism.

Rating: 2.50/5.