Ricardo García Blaya

e is, I think, one of the great bandoneon players and one of the most talented contemporary musicians. In his appearances he evidences a complete mastery of the instrument, without a display of juggling, but with expressiveness and strength, with subtle nuances and with arrangements of a remarkable good taste.

His vast repertoire includes classic tangos such as “Responso”, “El choclo”, “Canaro en París”, “Silbando” and others of his own inspiration: “Música por tu sonrisa”, “Tarde de julio”, “El día después” and the Astor Piazzolla’s hits: “Adiós Nonino”, “Libertango”, among others.

In his statement about the bandoneon, the poet Horacio Ferrer said: «The instrument of the century..., the one which breathes... the purest expression of the soul..., in the hands of Walter Ríos becomes an undisputed protagonist of the most beautiful melodies of all times».

«Where is the border line between man and the bellows?», says the writer Rodolfo Relman in Fueye, a poem he dedicated to Walter because of his “plentiful tango soul”.

Founder of the Tango Trío, co-founder of the Quinteto de Música de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires, he has travelled around the world with his artistry, appearing at the most important venues with his quintet, his sextet and teaming up with Ricardo Domínguez, in the unforgettable duo of guitar and bandoneon. He has also performed as soloist along with prestigious symphony orchestras and in music shows, among which El Pueblo Joven by Astor Piazzolla and Horacio Ferrer stands out.

He delved into the most different genres: from tango to rock, including folk music and even reggae. He was accompanist and recorded with the most outstanding tango artists: Oscar Alonso, Alberto Castillo, Hugo Del Carril, Tania, Edmundo Rivero, Roberto Goyeneche, Susana Rinaldi, Raúl Lavié, Chico Novarro, Eladia Blázquez, Adriana Varela, Horacio Molina, Tito Reyes, José Ángel Trelles.

As for folk music, he recorded with Mercedes Sosa, Domingo Cura, Kelo Palacios, Chango Nieto, Zamba Quipildor, Peteco Carabajal, Los Nocheros, El Chango Farías Gómez, and with singer-songwriters like León Gieco, Litto Nebbia and Facundo Cabral. Furthermore he worked with bandleaders and arrangers such as Oscar Cardozo Ocampo, Lalo Schiffrin, or Mariano Mores.

He recorded the music of the Argentine movies El Verano del potro, Amigo mío, Tango Feroz, Convivencia, Una sombra ya pronto serás, El lado oscuro del corazón and Plata quemada.

Together with Leo Sujatovich he appeared in the presentation in Spain and in Argentina of Tango Brujo, a show headed by Julio Bocca with music by Manuel de Falla.

As a teacher he has worked at the Instituto Manuel de Falla in the Tango and Folk Music Department, besides his private lessons with foreign students. He has taught in clinics of the instrument and of the tango genre in Israel, Spain and the United States.

In his long career we highlight his tenure as leader of the Sexteto Mayor; leader in the United States of Forever Tango; leader of the Buenos Aires Tango Company in Japan; he was one of the conductors of the Selección Nacional de Tango, winners of the Carlos Gardel 2006 award.

He has appeared as Guest Artist at the shows of Susana Rinaldi, Mercedes Sosa, Luis Miguel, Raimundo Fagner, Joaquín Sabina, Mariano Mores and Lalo Schiffrin.

Nowadays, besides being devoted to musical composition and to be producer of recordings of new talents, he is proud of introducing his trio comprised by two young talents: the pianist Abel Rogantini and the double bassist Juan Pablo Navarro.

His latest recording, Tarde de Julio, released by Melopea in November 2007, is for the first time shared with a female singer, the beautiful Mariel Dupetit. He achieved a work of high level in the fusion of classics, contemporary numbers and premieres. This recorded effort shows a delicate balance between the instrumentals and the vocal numbers. In the latter is featured the privileged voice of the female singer who interprets with a touching profoundness.

Walter Ríos is a faithful representative of the innovative school of contemporary tango, either as far as bandoneon playing is concerned or as the conception of our city music is evidenced. This is our humble homage to this great maestro.