This interview to Oscar Santini was made by me, Alberto Santini, in Córdoba on 27 march 2001. Oscar Santini, 74, is the only living son of Carmine Santini, his other siblings were Ana, Miguel, Carlos and my grandfather José, the eldest, born in Italy (Casalbordino, Chieti). Oscar is brother to my grandfather José and uncle to my father Néstor. I wrote down from the cassette and it is as follows.
The Tango "El simpatico" is available in a recording by the orchestra Juan D'Arienzo - Juan Santini, in the album "Viva mi tierra Argentina" (1951-1953).
BEGINNING : I am with Oscar Santini, brother to José Santini my grandfather and uncle to my father Néstor, but there is a bibliographic part on music and on EL SIMPÁTICO tango... Uncle Oscar, how does this story of the EL SIMPÁTICO begin...
Answer: One night I was coming back to the house where I was living, recounts my brother Carlos, and my brother José was trying with his musical instrument to compose a TANGO; since he was a musician and liked that very much. That's how EL SIMPÁTICO, also known as Tango EL SIMPÁTICO, was made, by J. Santini, later known as Juan Santini, and the only group that was able to record it was the Juan D'Arienzo orchestra.

Question: Did anyone else play EL SIMPÁTICO?
Answer: No, that was the only one .. according to what Carlos used to tell me, that was the only Tango composed by José, that was EL SIMPÁTICO.

Question: Do you remember any of the musicians in the Juan D'Arienzo orchestra ...?
Answer: At the piano Juan Polito or Julio Salamanca and the first accordion player was Héctor Varela, who later separated and founded another tango orchestra.

Question: Was EL SIMPÁTICO danced in that time, uncle?
Answer: EL SIMPÁTICO was only a dancing tango, since it had no lyrics, .. other tangos of that time were El Internado, Loca, 9 de Julio, Don Juan, El Choclo, Hotel Victoria, which were actually to dance.

Question: When did Granfather José, Uncle, write the Tango, an approximated date...?
Answer: He wrote the Tango around 1940. You have to know that in the cinema, at the time, movies were silent, and in the intervals people used to listen to music, there was a trio, formed by José Santini, Susana and Adriana (my grandmother) Pérez de La Rosa.

Question Later on...in what period , the 40's, or in 1932, was grandfather José young?
Answer : Yea, ... Grandfather José at the time - I am calculating - he was born in 1903 and was 26 or 27 years old, the only child he had was Néstor who was very young, and his wife Adriana was a wonderful pianist who succeeded in setting up a big music Conservatory in Leones, Province of Córdoba.

Question: Did all of them, the Pérez de la Rosa family, play the piano?
Answer: All the Pérez de la Rosas played the piano and so they stayed... I have to remind you that I was just in my teens, these things do not become updated, you never cease listening to them, so beautiful they were...

Question: Uncle Oscar, let's go to the CINEMA ... what can you tell me?
Answer: Grandfather José was an Expedition Manager for PARAMOUNT in Acevedo, a small town near Pergamino province of Buenos Aires and there he had a cinema! Since he was young he started his career in the cinema, he liked that, and music was his passion.

Question: Uncle Oscar... When did he come to Córdoba?
Answer: Your grandfather José came to Córdoba between 1958 and 1959, taking the famous movie "War and Peace", which was on in the Gral. Paz cinema, here in Córdoba, for three weeks; it was an extraordinary hit, and the movie was under his control, under your grandfather José's control.

Question: What kind of friends did Grandfather José have?
Answer: He had a great many friends, and all of them worked in the cinema and with Paramount, cinema was his life.

Question: Which was the area he covered with his job?
Answer: As a manager he covered the Province of Santa Fe, especially Rosario... And I remember that when I was a kid and with my nephew Néstor Alcides that José's son, we had a small card that he gave us and we could get in any movie hall in Rosario to watch the movies.

Question: That was cool, were you happy?
Answer: very happy, every early afternoon we went to the cinema to different cinemas.


Question: Was EL SIMPÁTICO a success at the time?
Answer: Yea... they danced it all the time, you saw what my wife KUKA told you, that she danced it a lot since she liked it very much and it was such a great music to dance.

Question: What were the repercussions when EL SIMPÁTICO was presented, do you remember, Uncle ? Answer: I have no idea, you see, the only Orchestra that recorded it, and I do not know how it came they recorded it, was Juan D'Arienzo... I don't know!
Maybe José had, met some musician, had a contact with a musician in the orchestra of Juan D'Arienzo, so that they recorded his Tango .

Question: How long ago was EL SIMPÁTICO composed?
Answer: Huh... EL SIMPÁTICO... 70 years ago, it must be 70 years old EL SIMPÁTICO, today it is rarely played ... it has practically disappeared ... but only one orchestra recorded it, and that was Juan D'Arienzo.-

I tell him: Uncle Oscar, I brought here the version that a friend from Chile, GINO BARDUCCI, an inspired tango player ... and we will listen to it in your house, to EL SIMPÁTICO tango, after 70 years ...
Answer: Ah... extraordinary I like it ... you made me feel moved listening to the TANGO of my brother José.

Final: Thanks a lot Uncle, to have given us your memories in this program I conduct every Saturday here in La Carlota...
I thank you too, my dear, I thank you very much.



Idea, Montage, Production and Conductor