Julio Nudler

e was son of Romanians that had emigrated in 1908. His brother Abraham —three years his senior—, was violinist and, at a very young age, had joined the Roberto Firpo orchestra to later switch to the Ernesto de la Cruz’s aggregation in which he became the lead player in his section; next followed Lucio Demare, Domingo Federico, Juan Carlos Cobián and Juan Canaro to accompany the singers Ernesto Famá and Francisco Amor.

The beginning of the end started in 1936 when baldness became a suffering for him. Fools and wind always existed. At that time a bald tango player was an unthinkable thing and, when Abraham appeared onstage the word baldy was heard and some laughs. A wig was of no help, he was unable to bear the situation and quit his appealing rise in tango.

Jaime was luckier seated on a piano stool. He began in 1928 with the orchestra led by the bandoneonist Ernesto de la Cruz at the Café San Bernardo on the Carabelas blind alley. He accompanied Libertad Lamarque at the Cine Florida with a quartet that included de la Cruz, Vicente Tagliacozzo (violin) and Alfredo Corleto (string bass). He later joined another group with Hamlet Greco (double bass), Norberto Bernasconi (violin) and Víctor Pontino (cello).

In 1929 we find him along with Federico Scorticati and César Ginzo (bandoneons) and Manuel Buzón (piano and singing). In 1932 he alternated the piano playing with Orlando Goñi in a sextet fronted by Manuel Buzón at the Cine Monumental, along with Alfredo Attadía and Aníbal Troilo (bandoneons), Alfredo Gobbi and José Goñi (violins) and Agustín Furchi (double bass).

He switched to the Pedro Maffia orchestra in which his partners were Leo Lipesker and Tito Besprován (violins) and Santos Lipesker (bandoneon). In 1935 he played with Eduardo Pereyra. There were quite many aggregations in which he played.

In 1940 he joined Antonio Rodio when the bandoneon section included Ernesto Rossi (aka Tití), Antonio Ríos, Luis Bonnat and Mario Demarco; they cut 16 recordings between 1943 and 1944.

In 1942 he was with Arturo De Bassi. Thereafter he played with Emilio Balcarce when his orchestra accompanied Alberto Castillo. Julio Ahumada played in that aggregation. In 1950 he joined the sextet headed by Ciriaco Ortiz that also included Freddy Scorticati, Elvino Vardaro and Hugo Baralis.

On occasions he was summoned by Héctor Artola to back up Oscar Alonso, Carmen Duval and María de la Fuente. On those sessions he alternated his work with Osvaldo Manzi and Dante Amicarelli.

He joined the aggregation led by Argentino Galván and, in 1957, he was member of Los Astros del Tango, a septet that included Elvino Vardaro, Enrique Francini (violins), Mario Lalli (viola), José Bragato (cello), Rafael del Bagno (double bass), Gosis (piano) and Julio Ahumada (bandoneon).

As from 1955 he was connected with Astor Piazzolla. That same year, for some appearances on TV channel 7, the Cuarteto Mensaje was put together. He accompanied Leopoldo Federico, Simón Bajour and San Pedro.

In 1960 and 1961 he played in the Astor’s Quinteto Nuevo Tango, later he quit but came back. In 1964 he played with the Nuevo Octeto and appeared in the operita María de Buenos Aires.

Gosis was a very talkative and good-humored man. On a recording session, Astor who had him on high esteem, admired him and had fun with him, told him: «Hold this and shut up!» And Piazzolla handed him a piano part. Without making a halt, while he read it, he told the other musicians: «Look what this guy wrote for me. It seems he filled his mouth with ink and spat it on the music paper». The music number was: “Tres minutos con la realidad”. He played it at first sight.

The composer of “Libertango” said on one occasion: «I have no doubts. He was the best pianist in my whole career. He used to play piano with a sound I really never heard in anybody else».

Gosis had a complete piano training that he had begun with maestro Vicente Scaramuzza. Being an excellent classical and jazz pianist, he was somewhat cold for what tango requested. Possibly because of his tenure in the Pedro Maffia orchestra, he did not stress the strong beats. He did not possess the left hand of the greats and, despite his long stay in music he did not develop his true personality. Even though he surpassed them as instrumentalist, in tango he did not reach the level of Juan José Paz or Emilio Barbato.

Luis Adolfo Sierra expressed his admiration for Gosis, like he did for Horacio Salgán, Carlos García and Atilio Stampone: «But they don’t touch me», he admitted.

They say that once, just before a performance, he found that a piano key was without its strip of ivory cover. He was very worried and he muttered: «I don’t know how I’ll manage to play». And Leopoldo Federico answered him: «You can play without ivory and without key… you’re a monster!»

Excerpted from the book: Tango judío. Del Ghetto a la milonga, Editorial Sudamericana, Buenos Aires, 1998.