Oscar Mármol
| Ricardo García Blaya

ossessing a delicate phrasing and good intonation, he interprets tango with a mezza voce which was the trademark of the 40s. His phrasing, at times, reminds us of Ángel Vargas, the emblematic singer of the Ángel D'Agostino Orchestra despite he does not try to copy him.

He was born in the Buenos Aires neighborhood of La Paternal and lived his last years in Mar del Plata, the beautiful seaside city located 400 kilometers from the Federal Capital.

His show business career started in 1947 with the aggregation led by Nicolás Lanzoni in the locality of San Miguel, province of Buenos Aires. He was vocalist along with Osvaldo Medina, a correct local singer.

Thereafter, two years later, he joined the Cuarteto Espectacular Buenos Aires fronted by Alejandro Scarpino, the composer of “Canaro en París”. The outfit was lined up by its leader on bandoneon, Roque Di Sarli on piano, José Pedro Castillo on violin–cornet and Mario Canaro on bass. They appeared at the Tango Bar on Corrientes Street.

Between 1951 and 1957, the most important event of his career took place when he joined the new orchestra led by Ángel D'Agostino. His fellow vocalists were Tino García and Ricardo Ruiz. The latter was the consecrated singer with Osvaldo Fresedo who had a short tenure but cut a memorable recording: “Cascabelito”. The group was comprised by twelve players and D'Agostino conducted from the piano.

With the bandleader he succeeded in recording on ten occasions. One of them was teaming up with García as duo: “Tiento crudo” composed by Víctor Braña and lyrics by Enrique Gaudino, the same songwriter of “San José de Flores”. We think that the standouts are: “Polvorín”, “Se llamaba Eduardo Arolas”, written by D'Agostino himself with Enrique Cadícamo and “Mi distinguida pebeta” by Juan José Guichandut and Horacio Sanguinetti.

In the late 1957, he split with the orchestra and, for a year, he joined the outfit led by bandoneonist Graciano Gómez, teaming up in duos with the female singer Elena Maida. The latter had been vocalist for Enrique Mora and later had teamed up with Enrique Campos. With this aggregation he made two recordings.

In 1959, both vocalists joined the group of the violinist Víctor Braña. Rubén cut three recordings, one of them is a curiosity, the bolero “Nuestro juramento” written by Benito de Jesús in a tango version. Furthermore he was summoned to join the staff orchestra of the TV Channel 7.

Finally, he put together his own group which he named Rubén Cané y su TBC del Tango, lined up by Aníbal Arias on guitar, the pianist Rubén Milton and El Negro Picton on bass. He recorded a disc, on one side “Tan sólo un loco amor” and on the other side, “Quiero verte una vez más”. Those were hard times for tango, it seemed that it would be his last try. But it wasn’t so.

In April 199,1 he reappeared singing with the combo Son del Sur, along with the bandoneon player Walter Rey and the guitarist Hugo Pardo. The charts are reminiscent of the Alejandro Scarpino’s quartet. With this accompaniment he came back to the recording studios, he cut ten tracks. Among them the waltz “Añoranzas” and the tango “Más sólo que nunca” are standouts.

Since 2003, he was a member of the Orquesta Estable del Teatro Colón of Mar del Plata. He appeared in the shows organized by the Compañía Musical Tango Bravo Club headed by Daniel Canales. One of them was Los duendes de Fresedo y D'Agostino which was staged at the Café Tortoni in 2004, alongside the singer Armando Garrido who passed away in August 2006.

With the same company, he is guest artist in the cast of Los duendes del arrabal at the Café Orión of Mar del Plata.

He was awarded by the Museo Manoblanca of Pompeya with the mention of the Orden del Buzón, as recognition for his long career in tango.

This archetypal porteño, sang until the last days, bringing joy to the lovers of our beloved city music. It turns out obvious the reason of this humble but deserved homage paid by Todo Tango.