Eduardo Adrián

Real name: Eyherabide, Carlos Alberto
Singer, lyricist, composer, journalist, theater director and lecturer
(4 February 1923 - 23 May 1990)
Place of birth:
Mar del Plata (Buenos Aires) Argentina
Néstor Pinsón

ome friends had got him a date for an audition at a room of the Julio Korn publishing house. There they were with Rodolfo Sciammarella as auditor and Oscar Sabino as accompanist on piano. The latter would later be a member of the Francisco Canaro Orchestra for many years.

When the music had already begun, Mariano Mores entered the building by chance and an employee made a gesture so that he would pay attention. Mores went into the room and soon later he went out with the singer towards Radio Belgrano. There, Jabón Palmolive (soap) sponsored a program which was looking after a new vocalist for the Canaro’s orchestra. Let us remember that Ernesto Famá and Francisco Amor had split with the aggregation in order to put together their own outfit. The Uruguayan singer Carlos Roldán had stayed with no other partner.

We’ll never know if he had some help or not but anyhow Adrián won it and immediately he joined the popular group. It was the beginning of the year 1941.

Born in Mar del Plata and brought up in Avellaneda, he probably genetically inherited his natural capabilities for singing from his mother, the operatic singer Emma Gismondi. He himself acknowledged her as his first devoted teacher.

His background in show business, before the mentioned audition, was poor, it’s only worthwhile mentioning that the year before he had managed to join the Teatro Casino choir, where he became a soloist singer almost immediately. By then he already had a nom de plume: Adrián Lavalle.

He immediately recorded with Canaro. The first disc, on October 22, 1941 was: the waltz “Anoche soñé”. Later came “Infamia”, “Corazón encadenado”, “Es mejor perdonar”, “Gricel”, “Cada vez que me recuerdes”, “Tristeza marina”, “Verdemar” and others. His output was over 40 numbers.

This first stage ended by the late December 1943. Seventeen years later they reunited to complete the recording relationship.

A tenure with Canaro meant as well numerous performances on radio and tours, be featured in his classic musical revues —that nearly every year since 1932 he presented in Buenos Aires and later in Montevideo—, and appear at the carnival balls on both banks.

In 1942 Pirincho premiered Sentimiento Gaucho at the Teatro Nacional. As it was usual, with script by Ivo Pelay and his music. There we had the comedienne and singer Susy del Carril, Carlos Enríquez, Oscar Villa (Villita), Cayetano Biondo and several scenes prepared to feature and launch definitively the young dancer Santiago Ayala (El chúcaro) and his malambos. The audience was surprised with the brand-new black light for these scenes. Adrián was showcased with: “Viviré con tu recuerdo” and “Corazón encadenado”.

The following year he appeared in the play Buenos Aires de Ayer y de Hoy. Here the figures were Tita Merello and Tomás Simari. He sang: “Y no la puedo olvidar” and in a duo with Roldán, “Soñar y nada más” and the march “Argentina [c]”.

Two years passed and he became a soloist. He signed a contract with Radio El Mundo to appear backed by the staff orchestra conducted by Andrés Fraga, with arrangements by Héctor Artola.

He performed frequently in Uruguay but recorded very little: two pieces with the Emilio Pellejero’s orchestra: “Sueño de juventud” and “Silbando”, 1946. Other two with Hugo Di Carlo, in 1950: “Adiós muchachos” and “Puente Alsina”. And two more in 1954 with the orchestra led by Heber Escayola: “Ruega por nosotros” and “Selección de Mariano Mores”. Finally, in 1969, he cut a long-playing record with 12 numbers, accompanied by a quartet which included Máximo Mori on bandoneon and Lucio Demare on piano.

Previously, in 1948, he appeared singing the tango “Uno” in the Argentine movie Los Pulpos directed by Carlos Hugo Christensen and starring Roberto Escalada, Olga Zubarry, Carlos Thompson and Beba Bidart. This film is presently missing.

In the late 50s other facets began to stand out in his appearances. He discussed about tango, before performing his songs, on other occasions he lectured on different aspects of culture and art and, it was in 1960 when he surprisingly appeared as contestant on a television program of questions and answers: Odol Pregunta. The subject chosen was Aeschylus and the Greek theater. After several programs he was eliminated and that, paradoxically, arose a feeling of affection on the audience because he had been wrongly eliminated by the board. So said specialists on the subject, professors of the Facultad de Filosofía y Letras (School of Philosophy and Letters) and there were even complaints from the University of Oxford.

He organized and directed several theater groups, one of themwas named Teatro del Tiempo. He made tours of Chile and Brazil, he traveled to Europe and worked for UNESCO.

Between 1962 and 1968 he settled in Uruguay, where besides singing he carried out activities connected to journalism. He returned in 1968 to present, under the auspices of UNESCO, a cycle of 38 lectures for high school students.

Subsequently, he spent a long season in Mendoza and created for Radio Nacional his program Latitud Tango.

He was author of some pieces: lyric and music of “Perdón Madame”, “Donde nadie llegó” and “La luna al paredón” (which might have been included in the songbooks of Osvaldo Fresedo and Aníbal Troilo with Raúl Berón). Also with music by Francisco Tropoli, “Me voy cantando bajito”. A humble singer of a Chilean cabaret was who inspired the lyric and the initial verse of this dramatic tango. He saw him in full decline and was very sorry. Its final lines say: «When I'd be onstage where my songs are waiting, protect me from the people that disturb my death. I'm leaving... I'm leaving singing in a hush, I've got a heavenly contract!»

Of the many singers that passed through the ranks of the Francisco Canaro Orchestra, Eduardo Adrián deserves a special attentive listening due to his peculiar style and intonation. He had a tenor register and a powerful voice. He was an easy phrasing singer, with a romantic mood, who had no problem in adapting himself to lyrics with profound drama. He was a delicate singer, which, plus his versatile personality, made him a rara avis (rare bird) within the milieu.

When Enrique Santos Discépolo came to know him, the former exclaimed: «One has to kneel down, at last in the country of tango there is a singer who also is an artist!».