Jorge Dobalo

Real name: Dobalo, Jorge
(10 March 1947 - )
Place of birth:
San Pedro (Buenos Aires) Argentina
Ricardo García Blaya

few times I allow myself to enjoy some pleasures and this time I will by making known a singer that sings only because he loves tango and its lyrics.

His proposal has rather to do with moods and the colors that lyrics suggest. And he offers us a touching intimate interpretation that portrays the stories and feelings of the people of Buenos Aires.

These stories resist death in the ill-fated framework of cold globalization, precisely, because they tell us about the transcendental things of people’s lives, an unavoidable part of our poetic porteña art.

He told me about his craftwork with Antonio Pisano, —that bandoneonist we knew with Luisito Cardei— and he also told me that they are getting a disc ready with around twenty songs, most them from the Gardelian songbook and which are not the most widely known.

As a way of confession he wrote to me: «We are encouraged by the priceless luck of having been born cuddled by this unsurpassable cultural expression that summons us, and by having lived, such is my case, a childhood connected to country dances, folk parties and heartfelt radio soap operas that amazed our innocent but eager ears».

He was born in the criolla city of San Pedro, in the province of Buenos Aires. His desire for singing was always present in him when at a very young age he tried to sing along with the Carlos Gardel’s discs.

He started by singing in several choirs. The first one was at the school his children attended, organizing together with his wife, the Urquiza Coral. Thereafter he joined the Coro Kennedy for a year and then switched to the Capella Buenos Ayres for a ten-year tenure. The latter was directed by Guillermo Vaisman, a great chamamé and tango man, today director of the United Nations choir.

In 1983 he made his debut as amateur soloist at barrooms and tearooms. His early attempts were in San Pedro, at the circle Entre Amigos, later as professional: at the Argot Café on Elpidio González and Álvarez Jonte, at the Eco Café Aromático, located at the crossing of Correa with the San Isidro boulevard and at the recently disappeared tearoom El Águila on Figueroa Alcorta Avenue, near the River Plate stadium.

Furthermore, he told us that his devotion for singing in public awoke when he heard Luis Cardei whose plain style respectful of melody and lyrics touched him deeply.

After the death of the admired singer he associated with Pisano so that the latter would accompany him on bandoneon. They appeared at barrooms and local venues until they got a gig at the mythical Café de los 36 Billares on Avenida de Mayo where they have been appearing for several seasons with their tango ritual.

Their songbook is mainly Gardelian, offering numbers scarcely known, carefully respecting the essence of the songs without altering the original works just like Cardei did when he heard him for the first time at the Complejo La Plaza, later at the Club del Vino.

Todo Tango had a debt with Jorge which with this short sketch we try to pay. This is not only a homage to the artist but also to the friend who, in so many encounters, delighted us with his tangos that are part of the soul of the neighborhoods and the heart of the people of Buenos Aires.

To sing well you don’t need strong lungs, neither false resources, nor sophisticated warbling, you only need good intonation, personality and love for what you sing and those capabilities, in our beloved singer, are found by the dozen.