Martín Podestá

Real name: Carrouche, Fidel Martín
Singer and composer
(19 December 1913 - 4 July 1975)
Place of birth:
Buenos Aires Argentina
Néstor Pinsón

hen in a monthly publication in the mid- 1957 Hugo Del Carril began to narrate the details of his show business career he immediately remembered the friends of his neighborhood who were his first listeners and loyal admirers.

Then he said that one of them suggested him to serenade in the neighborhood and so they did. The first person chosen for a serenade was a girl and they played a waltz entitled “Trovas [b]” which had been composed by one of the Spindola boys. The others were the brothers Mario and Martín Carrouche, the pianist Emilio Castaing and, of course, Carlos Cáceres who later was known as Hugo Del Carril. Also with them was a neighbor named Larrieu who used to strum a guitar.

They used to spend hours playing and singing at a small room in the home of the Carrouches which was located on Santander and Rivera Indarte Streets in the neighborhood of Flores. Then Martín suggested putting together a trio. Soon later the Trío París was born and it included Podestá, Cáceres and Castaing. Their debut was on Radio del Pueblo with a great acclaim for their international repertory but that success did not mean money.

Thereafter they signed a contract to appear at the Teatro Fémina, later the Comedia. It was a theater where musicals were staged and they had to appear onstage in a very peculiar way. The three men were hidden in a colorful paper chest and after the orchestra played a chord they stood up tearing the wrapping to appear before the audience singing and surrounded by several girls.

They became a quartet when Mario Carrouche was added. He was an excellent singer but the group was short-lived because Martín had the chance to join the Orquesta California which was popularly known as the Hawaiian orchestra. Later these kind of outfits were known as orquestas características because they played all kinds of beats. In that aggregation he sang along with the Hermanas Desmond and appeared on radio, theaters and clubs as was customary. That quartet again became a trio and then it only was remembered as an anecdote in the careers of Martín and Hugo Del Carril.

From 1935 to the early 40s, he was in the Pedro Maffia's outfit. They appeared on radios, theaters, made tours of the interior of the country up to the Patagonian area and in the summer of 1938 they appeared at the famous Casino of Viña del Mar in Chile. On their comeback to the country he went on singing at different venues.

Possibly so much activity kept him away from the recording studios because in 1936 he cut his only track: “Sombras porteñas”. It was a waltz composed by Sebastián Piana and Maffia with lyrics by Homero Manzi. He also sang it as the title song of the motion picture directed by Daniel Tinayre and premiered on February 25 that year at the Ambassador movie theater. Among other actors starred in that movie were Maruja Gil Quesada, Francisco Petrone, Alberto Anchart and Mercedes Simone that sings a song.

Thereafter his time of glory came when he was summoned by Pedro Laurenz with whom he recorded four numbers in only four months. His debut was with “La vida es una milonga”, a piece composed by the bandoneonist Fernando Montoni and with words by Rodolfo Sciammarella, on September 5, 1941. Later he recorded: “Quedate tranquilo” on December 2, 1941; “Flores del alma” and “Al verla pasar” on January 7, 1942.

As leading actor and singing accompanied by guitars he appeared in a theater season with the company led by the comedian Leonor Rinaldi. The last performances of his career were at several radio stations when he was only 33 years old.

He worked as an employee in a state organism until he retired because of his health. He was wordsmith and composer of several tangos: “Calle de mis recuerdos”, “Tristezas” and “Sin esperanza [b]” with Santos Lipesker; “Charlando” and “La cita” with Juan Bautista Gatti; “Ronda del tango” and “Yo soy aquel porteño”.