Difficult to find a cause that causes such unity, conviction and militancy among Argentine popular musicians and musicians like that of Solidarity Student Day. Since the damn tragedy they suffered nine students and a teacher from Colegio Ecos fifteen years ago, and with two champions of music poking at the edge of the urgency –Luis Alberto Spinetta and León Gieco-, unity in action emerges every October 8th. And every year, by summons, by emotionality, by commitment, it grows more.
This time, late pandemic through, the solidarity meeting became virtual again, but no less real. Less lively and participatory. On the contrary, before a matrix motto that reads “Knowing each other together makes us stronger”, more than fifty sound artists converged between unexpected crosses, surprise songs, preventive date and an end that does not move: to offer them as prayers to the students of Ecos and the teacher Mariana who lost their lives in the accident, while returning from a supportive homeland in Quitilipi, Chaco.
The diverse concert organized by the Civil Association “Driving to Conscience” It is already uploaded to Tickethoy, and there will remain on demand until next Saturday 17 October. It can be accessed through the TicketHoy site and the Solidarity Student site, and the proceeds will be allocated to the purchase of school supplies and non-perishable food for eighteen schools and three hospitals in five northern provinces.
Over there, high up, then the voices, sounds, crosses and emotions that color the commemoration go. Surprising encounters, especially. The one at the end is on its own, of course. All, including the children and youth choir of the environmental artistic project “Urgent songs for my land”, singing “October 8th”, the song that melted the feathers of Gieco and Spinetta in honor of those souls, and that must always be retained.
“Hug and heart / My cry is that of your voice
Wind and freedom / My footprint is that of your walk
Fire and fragility / tears of your moisture
Moon and blessing / my brightness is that of your sun (…)
I believe that inadvertently / I took God out of the siesta / And now my dreams will create / More life, more happiness ”.
But there is other confluences that is worth seeing, hearing, feeling. For example, that of Ana Prada and Tabaré Cardozo that from Uruguay they send directly to the heart of the Argentine routes a version of “The stairway of vanity”, a folk song by Tabaré, whose melancholic spirit gives an attempt to reflect the sadness that appears when the carnival ends. Open-border alchemy, of course, isn’t limited to that duo. It is reproduced in artists whose countries also have routes, accidents and irresponsible alcohol behind the wheel. One of them is the velvety Andrea Echeverri who extends his hand from Colombia to make “Como un tren”, along with the omnipresent Gieco and The Witch Salguero, oh go Commissioner Pantera, a band born in the Federal District of Mexico, which joins The Tipitos to face an Argenmex version of “Resplandor”.
Another intervention from the country of tequila and tacos comes through Julieta Venegas and the performance of a piece called “Los moments”, whose solidity is anchored in instrumental austerity: just a Gabanelli piano accordion and the continental voice of the composer, activist and actress. The historic group Congress It is another Latin American contribution: from Chile they send a beautiful, very beautiful version of “Ya es tiempo”.
The female solidarity quota, another of the key aspects of the concert, is more than guaranteed in the fraternal crusade, through presences that motivate feelings from the beginning. After a collage that mixes images from past concerts, and a voice-over story that frames the situation, the duo Barbarita Palacios-Lula Bertoldi acts in tandem for the benefit of the opening songs. One is “The wind that goes”, a piece that populates Creole, last solo album by the former Semilla. The other, the heartfelt “Poets of Latin America”, who Celeste Carballo he wrote in the late 1980s. “We must continue working so that these tragedies on the roads of our country occur less and less, until they do not happen more (…) it is essential that as drivers we improve our empathy for each other, which is the most important thing”, testifies the singer and guitarist from Santa Fe, before facing the rabid version he had in Javier Casalla a bra between strings. “Hell belonged to fools / Spring will be ours”, is a more than adequate phrase, given the framework and purpose.
The unisex vein, meanwhile, takes place in alchemies that go from a fine and meaningful duet between Willy Piancioli and the pop singer Vale Acevedo in favor of “Staying or leaving”, by Flaco Luis Alberto, until the visit to the imperishable zamba “Song from afar” (Armando Tejada Gómez-César Isella), which beautifully triangulates between the songs of Ligia Piro, the Ahyre group and Raly Barrionuevo. Or from the meeting Leon-Mavi Diaz, which goes through “Culture is the smile”, to another Leon classic from the eighties, and “We still sing.”
They interact with the hymn of Victor Heredia they (Eruca Sativa) plus them (Nahuel Pennisi and Lito Vitale). The song sounds rhythmic, powerful, solid. Possessed in turn by an emotional peak that increases at the time of his sentence yesterday, today, always … Of the disappeared of the dictatorship, and of those who left their lives on the Argentine routes. “For a different day / without pressure or fasting / without fear and without crying / because they return to the nest / our loved ones.” Immediately afterwards, Lito remains on the screen to air an original look at “Seminare”, sung by Rosario Ortega and Iván Noble. And he reappears, several songs through, to meet once more with Juan Carlos Baglietto in favor of “Collective Unconscious”.
The special production via virtual, of course, misses the hugs, the lighters flaming their flames, the anonymous chants “a bare chorus” from other editions. But it makes up for the lack of voice to voice, of body to body, with the living fire of the memory of the students and, above all, the collective commitment that ties everyone together. What did you say Ricardo Mollo -whose participation this time passes through “Five centuries equal”, recorded together with Gieco and Gurevich– in the edition of Page 12 last Sunday. “What we do every year is to accompany, as we can, with our music (…) A number of people show solidarity and converge, now it will be on a screen. Virtual, face-to-face, whatever, we are still together“.
A purpose that, of course, the Lion King ratified. “I usually don’t look at the injustices that happen in front of me on the side of the road. Those that I can, I face, and I try to form a group with others who think similarly, and thus do them even if it is to stumble. And if among many we achieve something of that, sometimes, without knowing or verifying it, it is even achieved save a life. Then, the work, the movement, the hopes and the life itself are worth it. “
Between the movement, the hopes and the life itself, the concert on demand continues, moving towards the feathers of Alicia Scherman and Luis Gurevich. A particular quartet of “between houses” made up of Nahuel Pennisi, Franco Luciani, Magalí Fontana and Gieco himself recover the beauty of “Alas de tango”, in sepia and among books of good memories. “Song of love for Francisca” is another of the classics of the rosquinense, which sounds at his hands, but also by his daughter Joana, and the young long-haired man Alejo Leon, current guitarist of Ricardo Iorio’s band. The trio with two violas and piano accordion provides a beautiful wild and natural version of that song from the seventies. Emotional peak, no doubt. Another, even more telluric, is the one that adds to León’s harmonica and guitar, the sachaguitarras from Santiago flown over by the aura of Elpidio Herrera. Together the seven make “A hymn from Santiago”, and remember certain passages of the deed of From Ushuaia to La Quiaca.
The spirit of meeting replicates with a plus in two very good initiatives that mark the opening of perspective. The first brings Gieco together with a group called Sale 500. It is about the Band of the music workshop of the San Martín University Center, the CUSAM, which works inside the Penal Unit 48 of José León Suárez, belonging to the Federal Penitentiary Service. With them making music from inside the prison -The film material thus testifies- the santafesino recreates a renewed and very heartfelt version of “El angel de la bicicleta”, the cumbia composed with Gurevich in memory of the Rosario militant assassinated by the police, “Pocho” Lepratti. Another singular confluence is the one between León and May Fail, a band made up of professionals and teachers from the Favaloro Foundation. The chosen theme is “El argentinito”, and everyone comes out to rock it with masks and nurses dresses.
Doing your part to top last year’s proceeds (nine tons of food distributed among almost two thousand boys and girls from thirteen schools) also appear on the screen Little tree with Sandra Vazquez placing the feminine color of her voice in the classic of Patricio Rey and his Redonditos de Ricota that the folk-rock band from Crucecita has been proposing for years: “El pibe de los astilleros”. Nor did they want to miss the opportunity to collaborate with two titans who came from the deep beginnings of Argentine rock. Litto Nebbia and Gustavo Santaolalla Talents and experience are intertwined in favor of “Mother listen to me”, the original gem of Los Gatos. Another classic of those is the one they share Marcela Morelo and David Lebón: “Time is fast.” Or, of more here, “Superhéroes”, subject of Going from bed to living room what do they share Javier Malosetti and Los Tipitos.
All were, all are and all can be also towards the end when the expected happens: almost half of the participants converge on a new version, always necessary, of “October 8”. All said.