Armando Pagés

Real name: Pagés, Armando
Guitarrist and composer
(11 June 1903 - 1992)
Place of birth:
Ranchos (Buenos Aires) Argentina
Ricardo García Blaya

ccording to Ignacio Corsini’s son, Pagés was the tallest and the most handsome of the three guitarists that backed his father. He recalls, also, that they met on the television, after many years, because of a special homage to the singer. On that occasion the guitarist told him a story he did not know.

When Carlos Gardel was about to travel to Europe, José Razzano called him to offer him a place in the accompaniment to the Zorzal Criollo. With great enthusiasm, for a month the guitar player went to Gardel’s place, on Jean Jaurés Street, to rehearse where always he was received by Carlos’s mother, Doña Berta. They had planned to make their debut appearance at the Cine Alberdi in Mataderos. Because of that, Pagés decided to talk to Corsini to tell him he was leaving.

-Gardel pays me very well, he told him. –How much?, asked don Ignacio. –This sum, answered Pagés. –All right, I’ll pay you the same and you stay here.

Then, Pagés told Carlos about this, and the latter replied: «OK. Finally, El Tano is a great friend of mine and I can’t do to him a thing like this».

From 1927, and as substitute for José María Aguilar who suggested his inclusion, Pagés was member of the guitar trio that backed the singer for nearly twenty years, along with Rosendo Pesoa and Enrique Maciel. His debut on record was on July 30, for the Odeon company, with four pieces: “En la vieja pulpería”, tango by Enrique Maciel and Francisco Brancatti; “La querencia”, tonada by Santiago Rocca; “Martín Fierro”, pericón (according to the label on the record: by Castillo, Canavesio and De Bassi) and the song “Mis harapos”.

That same year, teaming up as duo with José María Aguilar, he recorded two numbers of the latter for the Victor label: the foxtrot “Manos brujas” and the zamba “Las madreselvas”.

His tenure with Corsini was until June 19, 1946 and it ended with four tracks: “Mama Vieja”, “Milonga triste”, “Hermano gaucho”, zamba by Juan Larenza and Lito Bayardo and the waltz “Tristeza criolla”.

Along with Rafael Iriarte and Rosendo Pesoa he recorded instrumentals under the name Trío Odeon, of which we have: “Recuerdos platenses”, a waltz of his own, the tangos “Don Juan (El taita del barrio)”, “Hojarasca”, “La payanca” and “Señor”. Furthermore, the group cut recordings as Trío Iriarte-Pesoa-Pagés, for the Glüksmann House.

He also accompanied other singers, among them Rosita Quiroga, Agustín Magaldi, René Ruiz and Emilio Roca stand out, in line-ups with several guitarists, among them, Diego Centeno and Vicente Spina.

According to Orlando Del Greco, Pagés was a great friend of Rosendo Pesoa’s. They met for the first time in the city of La Plata when both accompanied the Calvi-Scalon duo (Manuel Calvi and Luis Scalon).

Finally, in 1950, he joined the guitar group, which with Rosendo Pesoa, Adolfo Carné, Achával and Milton, backed Edmundo Rivero in his launching as soloist singer.

Armando Pagés was born in Ranchos, province of Buenos Aires, but he lived his entire life in La Plata, a city where he died in 1992.