The Revolutionary Poet

Posted: May 3, 2013 in El tango cuenta su historia


1. A HOMERO, Susana Rinaldi
2. FUIMOS, Osvaldo Pugliese with Roberto Chanel
3. CHE BANDONEON, Hector Artola with Raul Alonso
4. BARRIO DE TANGO, Anibal Troilo with Roberto Goyeneche
5. DISCEPOLIN, Anibal Troilo with Raul Beron
6. SUR, Edmundo Rivero

Homero Manzi was an author of tango lyrics that became true porteño anthems , he was also an activist  speaker who always spoke in favor of the disenfranchised people. Both in the arts and in life Homero Manzi walked the popular sidewalk. On May 3, 1951, consumed by a relentless disease, he stepped into immortality.

Homero Manzi will always be evoked when the definitive history of the creators of the music and poetry of Buenos Aires is written.
Very few have chronicled with such talent and tenderness, the archetypes and the ghosts of a city humid and nostalgic, the voices, the caricatures and the contradictions of a traumatized society .

Before Manzi, the tango was a dense musical expression with blurred poetic expressions. Most poets and authors had created a stereotyped anthology of the complaint. The most distinguished aspect of Homero Manzi was to not contribute to the increasing flow of porteño tears. He used his provincial eyes to paint the neighborhood and its characters, avoiding kitsch to write about kitschy things such as simple domestic lives.

Until the arrival of Manzi, the narrative style which prevailed in tango typified evil and fugitive women in licks and ermine, who abandoned their beaus to end up in their older days in some tubercular hospital.

Homero Manzi’s legacy is his poetry, filled with neighborhoods nostalgia and landscapes of Buenos Aires with his characters lost in deep love relationships.
Homero Manzi represents for many Argentines the epitome of a country that could be and often have been denied. A rural man, a connoisseur of the land that is the root of all things, he was also a neighborhood porteño with an privileged intellect to serve the people.

A renovator poet who dared to take hold of the poetry of books to convert them into the verses of the popular song.


  1. sounddesign2 says:

    I’m researching Anibal Troilo and his relationship with Astor Piazzolla for a dramatized radio documentary in Holland. A lot of it will be set at the funeral of Troilo in Buenos Aires in 1975. Is there anyone who could help me with some facts about the funeral itself? What was the procession like? Was there a church service? If so, what music was played / sung. Church bells tolling? Apart from Piazzolla’s Suite Troileana, was any other music composed and played in honour of Troilo? I’d be really grateful for any information!

    • Hi and thank you for contacting us.
      It seems like a very challenging project and I wish you the best.
      In my educated opinion, the relationship between Troilo and Piazzolla dates back to the times when Troilo admitted Piazzolla in his orchestra, and ended more or less when Piazzolla quit the tango circa 1949.
      I suggest you read “Astor Piazzolla, A Memoir” by Natalio Gorin, and also contact for the kind of information you’re looking for.
      It seems to me that you’re trying to create a connection between Troilo and Piazzolla that didn’t quit exist, and while Piazzolla composed El gordo triste around 1967 with lyrics of Horacio Ferrer after Troilo wrote him a letter recognizing the time thyey had spent together in the forties, and also did write the Suite Troileana in 1975 after Troilo death, it is possible that Piazzolla mostly saw in Troilo the man of tango he couldn’t quite become because of his upbringing as an American boy in Brooklyn. Years later Piazzolla would stay true to his enormous ego saying this about Troilo, “If Troilo had had a higher musical culture, I can not imagine what he might have become.”
      Let me suggest you read, “Astor Piazzolla, A Memoir” by Natalio Gorin. It is a post mortem beacon that shines a warm light of fairness over Astor Piazzola‘s definitive truth. The only one that counts: his own. Natalio Gorin personifies the best attributes of a friend. He tells the story from his heart and from his mind providing a historical perspective of a great artist from a human point of view.
      Amadeus Press/Timber Press, Inc. – The Haseltine Building – 133 SW Second Avenue, Suite 450 – Portland, OR 97204

      Best wishes, and please let me know your project turns out.

      • sounddesign2 says:

        Thank you for your comments and suggestions Alberto. Have you ever come across information about the funeral of Troilo itself? If so, it would be most helpful. I’ll certainly let you know how we get on and will read Natalio Gorin’s book.
        Thanks again, and best wishes,

      • You’re welcome.
        There is very little information regarding the funeral, mostly because the family wanted it that way.

  2. sounddesign2 says:

    Just got Natalio Gorin’s book through the mail – looking forward to reading it.
    Thanks again.

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