Néstor Pinsón

e was born in the city of Dolores, province of Buenos Aires. He was a child when for the first time he heard a guitar being strummed and it amazed him. And it was his mother —a countrywoman—, who painstakingly not only bought the instrument for him but also taught him his early lessons which despite they were elementary for him were good enough to start. It was a time when at family homes music and singing, conversations about the daily work and other matters were the everyday entertainment for the leisure hours.

From that moment on he never hesitated in asking every neighbour or visitor that knew something else to teach him in order to learn a little bit more. The rest was provided by his inborn talent and occasionally by the contribution of some or other musician with the necessary knowledge to transfer his mastery in harmony, first, and all what was necessary, later. After his teen years he went to the south of the province of Buenos Aires. He played wherever it was possible and, as soon as he became more experienced, played concerts and accepted students who, like him in previous years, were eager to learn.

Several years passed before he would try to face the big city, Buenos Aires. It was only when he was 30 that he found the courage to go. He had a letter of recommendation by the criollo reciter, Lauro Vianna, that he delivered to the latter’s colleague, the famous and popular Fernando Ochoa who was an actor, poet, ever-present on the radio, the theatre and the movies. Furthermore the latter was widely renowned for his permanent tours throughout the interior of the country.

Ochoa immediately liked the young man and suggested him to play the music background during his performances. This lucky start was followed by tours of the cities of the interior, appearing in radio programs and at some theatrical plays. Even though he had not much time to rest he achieved, among other things, attending classes to polish his technique with maestro Alfredo Prat and appearing as soloist. Furthermore he was father of three children, composed refined folk music and led groups with a large number of guitars, generally from 12 to 15 instruments which Claudio Martínez Payva —a theatre man—, used to call «guitar squads».

These guitar groups were put together in 1952 and we must highlight that through their ranks passed players of the level of Roberto Grela and Ubaldo De Lío. Years before he had had the idea of forming the Cuarteto Popular Argentino with names such as Sebastián Piana, Pedro Maffia and the bassist Ángel Corleto. With the latter he often appeared for several seasons on the radio but, regrettably, his partner had an early death.

As a consecrated soloist he toured many countries of Latin America and several European countries: France, Belgium, Spain and Portugal where he played the music created by the most important names of South America. So he played pieces composed by Juan de Dios Filiberto, Félix Pérez Cardozo (Paraguay), Heitor Villa-Lobos (Brazil) and by many others, Uruguayans, Bolivians and, of course, his own music.

On his tours of the interior of the country his appearances were split into three sections. The first was devoted to pieces of the classical guitarists. The second might either be a poetry recital or a theatrical play, as it happened with Armando Discépolo’s Mateo. And as a finale, his own compositions either as solos or duets, trios and even quartets put together for the occasion.

Between 1934 and 1954 many times he was summoned by the recording companies. It is worthwhile mentioning his arrangement for “Clavel del aire” that he wrote by that period.

His death came unexpectedly. He had returned from a tour with some health problems. His condition soon got worse and all of a sudden he passed away. Someone cleverly commented: «He was an artist with a formal classical training who universally spread the music of his place of origin». We add: the music of the southern area of the province of Buenos Aires.

Two of his peers paid homage to him. One was Lorenzo Girola who dedicated to him “Adiós a Fleury” and the other, Argentino Luna, with his number, “El patrón del clavijero”.

In SADAIC 37 of his pieces are filed in the record. We shall mention those which were included in tango songbooks and were committed to disc: “Brindis de sangre” (tango), recorded by Azucena Maizani on June 7, 1935, also by Julio Sosa with the Armando Pontier Orchestra on August 9, 1957; “Milonguero del ayer” (instrumental milonga) recorded by the Cuarteto de la Ochava in 1983, by the Orchestra El Arranque in 2000 and by the Juanjo Domínguez’s quartet, among others; “Te vas milonga” (milonga) —with lyrics by Fernando Ochoa—, recorded by the duet formed by Roberto Grela and Edmundo Porteño Zaldívar in 1964, by the Conjunto Treinta y cuatro Puñaladas in 2002, by the Salgán-De Lío duo twice, in 1976 and in 1988, by the orchestra led by Carlos García featuring Roberto Grela on guitar in 1975 and, in a vocal version by Rubén Juárez with the guitar group headed by Roberto Grela; “De clavel en la oreja” (milonga), a piece that appealed to various concert players and, especially, the guitarist Alberto Chaín who committed to record not only this milonga but also 34 more pieces, which meant almost the entire Fleury’s oeuvre.

Lastly, “Alma en pena [b]” (estilo), same title as the famous tango, recorded by Nelly Omar with a guitar group fronted by José Canet and also cut by Edmundo Rivero, it bears lyrics by Claudio Martínez Payva; and “Desvelo” (song), with lyrics by Lauro Vianna, recorded by Mercedes Simone.