Oscar Del Priore

anet is the prototype of the classic tango guitarist, always ready to back with his guitar a tango vocalist. His influences date back to the style of the players that accompanied Gardel, Magaldi and Corsini.

He was one of the few guitarists that managed to stay away from Roberto Grela's influence, creator of a major trend in tango. His style was deeply rooted and directly based on the classic guitar groups. On many of his performances he added to the guitar trio or quartet other string instruments: contrabass, violins and violoncello.

At age twelve his vocation awakened when he heard Ignacio Corsini and he was greatly struck by the guitar trio that backed the singer which was lined up by Armando Pagés, Rosendo Pesoa and Enrique Maciel.

By that time he lived in the neighborhood of La Paternal and used to go fishing to the Maldonado creek with a friend, a little older than him: Piero Hugo Bruno Fontana, who time later would become Hugo Del Carril.

His first guitar teacher was Jesús González. In 1933 he began to work as professional with the singer Santiago Devin in a guitar group with Alonso, Arana and Arrieta. He also backed Fernando Díaz and Dorita Davis and joined the Radio Stentor staff.

Later he was associated with the singer Alberto Gómez with whom he shared a 30-year career and made tours of many countries in Latin America. In Cuba their success was amazing, with a lot of journeys and a great number of recordings. During one of those tours Canet composed two of his most famous tangos: “La abandoné y no sabía”, in Chile in 1943 and "Tarde" in Caracas (Venezuela) in 1947.

In 1938 the poet and journalist Amleto Vergiati presented him the lyrics for a milonga music that the guitarist had to compose. The lyrics was titled “Julián Pardales”, an imaginary character of the neighborhood of Los Corrales. Canet liked the poem but suggested Vergiati to change Pardales for Centeya. So he did and, to avoid destroying the existing rhyme, he replaced Corrales by Pompeya. So the milonga “Julián Centeya” was born, a name that finally would become the pseudonym of the poet who until then was known as Enrique Alvarado.

He accompanied a great number of singers: Oscar Alonso, Juanita Larrauri, Roberto Medina, Guillermo Rico, Jorge Vidal, Alberto Marino, Alfredo Dalton, Mariano Leyes, Gloria Díaz and others.

Between 1951 and 1952 he was based in Córdoba and appeared on the radio station LV3 along with the violinist Abel Lizarrago. They were introduced as La Guitarra Viajera y el Violín Romántico. In 1956, he appeared as guitar soloist on Radio Belgrano and, in 1959 he formed the Quinteto Garufa, comprised with bandoneon, two guitars, violin and string bass, featuring the singer Héctor Alvarado.

This aggregation played a style of tango quite suitable for dancing which he called baiango. They recorded for the T.V. label and, among other pieces, they cut: “De puro curda”, “Así se baila el tango”, “Llegó el baiango”, “Baiango a Mar del Plata” and “Churrasca”.

Between 1965 and 1969 he run his own local: El Rincón de José Canet at the basement of Callao 451.

In 1972 he persuaded Nelly Omar to resume her singing activity. It took place on July 27 that year and appeared many times until 1981 when Canet had to quit because of a stroke. During that period they cut many recordings for the RCA-Victor company and the Embassy label.

On the record released by American Records: Jorge Vidal 1969 For Export, Canet's outfit accompanies the singer, but on one of the tracks we can hear the instrumental rendering of "La yumba".

He was a prolific composer, his greatest hits were: “Me besó y se fue” (waltz), “Sigo queriéndote igual”, “Tarde”, “La abandoné y no sabía”, “Hoy al recordarla”, “Y dicen que no te quiero”, all them with his own lyrics. Also “Mi bolita cachuza”, “Los cosos de al lao”, “Serpentinas de esperanza”, “Julián Centeya” (milonga), “Amar y callar”.