The ink of the seas has flowed Tanguito, but little is known about its mysteries. There is not even a consensus on how he died fifty years ago today. The official version indicates that this Friday, May 19, 1972, he fled in terror from Unit 13 for the mentally ill in Borda and was killed by a train from San Martín., as he attempted to return home to Caseros. However, as often happens with types that become myths, there is no shortage of people who tend towards parallel versions. In this case, they do not deny the place or the day, but the form: was he driving himself? by accident? or thrown out by “the law”?
Incredible, but not that much. sketch the life of Jose Alberto Iglesias, at least the stretch that goes back to when he began to live directly on the streets, lies precisely in talking about the daily connection between him and this law. Between his self-destructive way of life, which destroyed gear and syringes day after day, and the blue terror which, at that time, was more than average.
There was a moment in the life of this enigmatic troubadour, who only knew how to play three chords in E but who, even with this economy of means, had generated some of the most beautiful songs of the origins of Argentine rock (“Spring love” – with lyrics by Hernán Pujó, “Natural” or “The golden princess”, between them) in which there is a turning point. A moment of no return. An inner explosion with no turning back.
It’s true that he left traces, small gestures of despair, traces of the future. One of the best known, of course, was the phrase that Litto Nebbia heard it in Pearl’s bathroom while urinating. “I’m very lonely and sad here in this shitty world,” repeated Tango sitting on the toilet. Verse that the founder of The cats would take to shape it into a song, and turn it into the first great Argentine rock anthem: “The raft”.
After the successful release of the single from The cats in 1967 -two hundred thousand copies sold- can also be read as a hopeless milestone. Ramses VII, because as such he received royalties, the money was literally delusional. Instead of assigning him, like any average aspiring musician, to buying instruments, gearing up, or materially supporting a band, he spent it all on food and drink for his friends. Or the taxi rides of those he charged others when he took them traveling from Caseros to Capital.
The songs that reappeared in May 2009, but which Tanguito had recorded, still lucid, in the small room of the TNT studios on October 20, 1967, also offer clues to this tragic future. The way some people look at life brings bad luck. Cloudy. desperate as Discepolo, but with a folk-rock touch. weigh in with the beauty “Subtly to Susana”in which he asks his partner to leave him alone, or “Spring Love”including one of his friends at the time, the Spruce “Flaco”would do justice decades later in exactbut it intensifies in “The Inhuman”for example: “We eat lunch dead / and we have become accustomed / to digest very well”, he sings with a dark sensitivity, doubling the bet that Javier Martinez had proposed -for the same album- in “The Remaining Man”.
“Yelling”another song that Tanguito signs as Ramses VII to differentiate itself from its Clan Club namesake, it is not in saga to the imprint: “In the 20th century era we live in today / it seemed to reemerge from the stone age / as a present which breeds war, pain and suffering”.
Tracks. Guides of a sensitive soul who flew over the margins, leaving aside superficialities and softness. With a plus, in addition, which would make it stay in the middle of these turbulences which moris, the “Flaco” or Javier Martínez himself, they would go through with more sense of reality. With capacity for action and reaction on it.
When Tanguito goes from dressing in lamé bags at Bar Liceo, to wearing black women’s stockings over his head, and sleeping with others of his lineage in public squares, which operates in his mysterious inner world, anxious and desperate, it is the incapacity – holy in its innocence for some – not to support the cruelty of the world which surrounds it. When he goes from singing innocuous songs like “My Pan” Is “reconcile” for Los Dukes, asking Moris to translate songs from Bob Dylan Yes John Lennonor sing in a trembling voice, naked before the universe, gems like “Natural” it’s because he’s looking for weapons to fight the doldrums, the pain, something he clearly wouldn’t achieve in the end, not even overwhelmed by his scraping in the seventh.
And that’s how he goes from being a sensitive singer-songwriter, with a lot of inner world to come out, to diving into a strange underworld of madness, isolation and persecution. To keep potential audiences trapped in Square of France Is Cavenot being able to complete a show, or to literally be spat on and attacked during a Happening in Bariloche, when came out on stage in pajamas, spread a blanket on the floor and fell asleep. From the recording of a good to very good album like the 1967 one – especially because it was a discovery when there was almost nothing – to the recording, already well destroyed, of the one in which Martínez encourages him to play “The raft” through the famous phrase “In the bathroom of La Perla de Once you composed La Balsa”session during which, by the way, Iglesias refuses to sing “The Golden Princess”.
And to finally get away from his musician friends who tried to sublimate pain through art, towards a world of paranoia, vampire beings, drugs and loneliness that put him in a void between the Devoto prison and the Bordawhere the residual sensitivity is annihilated by the electroshocks, and there is no therapeutic confinement.