Salvador Otero

e was born in the neighborhood of Flores. His family was formed by his father Manuel, his mother Dolores Moreno, both Spaniards and his brother Manuel, who later would be renowned as a player of tango music.

He attended grammar school at the Juan Bautista Peña school on 948 Trelles Street. It was the same school where the writer Leopoldo Marechal was teacher and whose music room was named Carlos Gardel by a municipal decree.

As tango was in vogue and radio stations were established as communication media, that was the reason for the musical inclination of many young people and Osvaldo was one of them. In August 1931 he definitively adopted his maternal family name and as vocalist he joined the orchestra led by his brother Manuel to sing on Radio Prieto in the programs sponsored by the Giol wine company. Other names in that cycle were Charlo, Amanda Ledesma and Virginia Vera. It was the beginning of a series of appearances on radio, which continued on Radio Porteña, La Voz del Aire, Radio Argentina and, again, on Radio Prieto.

In 1932 the orchestra played in many shows introducing a duo of singers formed by Moreno and Félix Gutiérrez. In December, they appeared at the Villa Crespo cinema theater, on 835 Triunvirato Street, nightly before the projection of the movie The Red Haired Woman, with Jean Harlow.

He recorded eight numbers with his brother’s orchestra. Among them there is that beautiful painting written by Celedonio Flores with music by Manuel Buzón, “Mediodía”.

The following year he tried his luck as a soloist on several radio stations, with the help of the singer Alberto Vila who allowed him to sing his repertory and have his guitarists for his debut on Radio Prieto.

In the early 1935 he appeared with the Buzón’s orchestra at the Monumental cinema theater for the election of Miss Radio. He also appeared on Radio Rivadavia and later on Splendid. From this period his outstanding interpretations are the waltz “Noches de Atenas” and the tango “Papel picado”, accompanied by the guitarists Ramos, De Ruddy and Buscaglia and, on some occasions, by the Canattaro-Pedretti duo.

In May 1936 he made a hit with the Guillermo Barbieri’s tango “Flor del valle”, and as well with Miguel Caló’s “Es una santa mamá” and Antonio Helú’s “No vale la pena”. In June, Moreno who still was working as dental mechanic, appeared at a party as homage to the singer Pedro Vargas, with whom he contended in a special payada based on the natural inclination for improvisation boasted by the Mexican.

In January 1937, ended his work on Radio Splendid, he returned to Rivadavia to sing popular songs: tangos, zambas, estilos or cifras. One year later he performed at the festival held at the Luna Park, to raise funds to bring back the remains of the victims in the accident of Medellín: Barbieri, Riverol and Carpas Moreno, Gardel’s accompanists.

In October 1938 he appeared, only as actor, in a short role in the movie El viejo doctor, directed by Mario Soffici. The leading roles were performed by Enrique Muiño, Alicia Vignoli and Ángel Magaña.

By that time he appeared on several radio stations until 1939 when he came back to Belgrano to sing in a program which also featured the Rodolfo Biagi’s orchestra with the vocalist Teófilo Ibáñez. On that radio the most important artists of the period were showcased and he was in the cast. In January he was invited to appear in the film El sobretodo de Céspedes, directed by Leopoldo Torres Ríos. In that movie he sang the Rodolfo Sciammarella’s milonga “Quién te dice”, accompanied by the orchestra led by José Tinelli.

Many were the successful programs on Belgrano, among others, the one sponsored by Jabón Federal. On them Moreno had encounters as payador with Néstor Feria and, as well Roberto Firpo’s quartet, Sofía Bozán and Tito Lusiardo used to appear. He was one of the masked people in the Audición Misteriosa (Mysterious Show), along with Nelly Omar, Fanny Loy, Carlos Viván, and others. The listeners had to recognize the voices of the artists.

In the early 40s he achieved a great repercussion with his renditions of: “Milongueando”, milonga by Pracánico and Carlos Pesce and the tangos “Suerte loca” and “Corazón”.

Once when he was singing “Agüelita qué horas son”, the radio speaker Tita Armengol, the one who recorded her voice for the telephone service, interrupted him in the middle of the piece and said: «A quarter past nine». It caused a general laughter and the surprised look of the radio officials.

In 1941 he was hired by Radio Argentina for its annual cycle of programs, on which were featured: Azucena Maizani, Ada Falcón, Oscar Alonso, Carlos Roldán, Juanita Larrauri, Héctor Palacios, among other artists. He was also presented on Radio Belgrano, as member of its art embassy. I recall, among them, Santiago Devin, Roberto Firpo, Dorita Davis, Roberto Zerrillo, Maruja Pacheco Huergo, Alberto Gómez, Francisco Lomuto and Juan de Dios Filiberto.

In July of that year he was starred in Gran pensión La Alegría, directed by Julio Irigoyen and later, he appeared in the revue theater alongside Luis Sandrini, Azucena Maizani and Tita Merello, in the play Una novela de sorpresas and, by the end of the year, in the staging of Los muertos written by Florencio Sánchez.

When the guitar strummer and lyricist Lito Bayardo arrived in Buenos Aires from his hometown of Rosario, he got in touch with Moreno and they formed a duo that made its debut in September 1943 on Radio Belgrano. Their greatest hit was “Allá en el bajo”. By the mid- 1944 they broke up and Moreno returned to Splendid in a program that also featured Mario Maurano and his orchestra.

He was, undoubtedly, a radio singer. Because of that it is impossible to mention all his appearances in those years, generally with guitars. But we can name some of his hits: the estilo “Guitarra, guitarra mía”, the tangos “Encuentro”, “Si se salva el pibe” and the milonga “Música del organito”, which he wrote in collaboration with his brother.

In August 1955, due to Manuel Buzón's death, he became the leader of the orchestra which was then conducted by Lalo Benítez and whose vocalist was Marcelo Paz.

After several years of his absence in the airwaves, in 1961 he reappeared on Radio Del Pueblo and on Belgrano.

He died in Buenos Aires at age 76, surrounded by the love of all those who came to know him and admired him.