Luis Alposta

Carlos Gardel’s Originalities

arlos Gardel was our first national Singer and he included in his songbook a wide variety of musical genres of our cultural heritage.

Among our popular singers he was the first to add bel canto techniques to his artistry.

He was the first one in recording the tango “Mi noche triste (Lita)” which is regarded as the first tango-song. From that landmark, according to Ricardo García Blaya, Gardel invented modern song.

He was who created the way of singing tango, in which we find an amazing blend of technique and sensitivity which would pave the way for future generations.

The short films that starred him, shot by Eduardo Morera in 1930, were the first ones in our country to include a soundtrack in a movie. With these shorts he was a forerunner, also as an interpreter, of the video clip.

He was the first Argentine artist that, as a leading actor, was filmed in the United States.

For the first time in the history of cinema, and in more than one theater, the operators were forced, on the audience’s request, to rewind the film tape and to play the song back again.

He has been the first Argentine artist who has succeeded in transcending worldwide.

He was the first one in singing on a duplex radio broadcast live. He, from the United States, and his guitarists, from Buenos Aires.

He was the first in overdubbing his voice to simulate a duet with himself in a recording.

He has been the only Argentine whose family name is used as an adjective. An adjective used as a synonym of excellence. Mr. so-and-so is Gardel!, we use to say when we refer to someone whose virtue and command of a profession, of an art or of a craft is indisputable and evident. But, be careful, you can be Gardel in any field but not in singing. Despite someone may sing very well we never say he is Gardel. But when someone sings badly and he «pretends to sing well», we turn to the same adjective but with another meaning of the phrase, and it is when we say: «Mr. so-and-so... pretends to be Gardel».

And something else in which he has also been the first one. From October 2 to 5, 1992, the Alianza Francesa, under the heading The meeting of two worlds, organized an exhibition of graphic humor of France and Argentina at the Centro Cultural Recoleta.

Then pieces belonging to the Foundation «Severo Vaccaro» Museum were shown and the first exchange by fax between draftsmen of both countries was made. A Gardel’s portrait was the first in arriving in France, via fax. It was a drawing I made, whose original is at the Museo de la Caricatura and whose only authenticated copy, is in the gallery of the Café Tortoni.