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Caminito

Caminito

Today, turned into a tourist attraction, the street combines the past and the present in the bright colors of its old buildings. This tour is a must.
“Little path covered with thistle, the hand of time erased your tracks. I would like to fall beside you and let time kill us both.” (“Caminito”, by Juan de Dios Filiberto and Gabino Coria Peñaloza) Don Oscar Juan de Dios Filiberti Rubaglio was without doubt a very peculiar guy from the district of La Boca. Better-known for his stage name, Juan de Dios Filiberto was not only a great musician and an orchestra conductor, but also a formidable man. Born and raised on the city limits, in an area with immigrants and tough people, Filiberto adhered, in his youth, to the principles of anarcho-syndicalism in vogue in the early 20th century, due to his condition of harbor worker. He alternated music studies with different trades in order to make a living. A bricklayer, a stevedore, and a lathe operator, among other occupations, he was also noted for being an adamant champion of the rights of Argentine authors and composers. As such, he greatly influenced the enactment of the 1933 Copyright Protection Act, and later founded the Sociedad Argentina de Autores y Compositores de Música –SADAIC (Union of Argentine Authors and Composers).Little did Filiberto know about a lost path in the Argentine northwest, when Gabino Coria Peñaloza showed him the lyrics of a song that would later become the immortal tango Caminito.This, however, doesn’t matter too much. The most unforgettable songs in the traditional repertoire are beyond any historic or geographic consideration; and that is why people tend to adapt them to their own idiosyncrasy and perception of the universe. The truth is that the short and colorful universe called Caminito is a pedestrian walk in the Buenos Aires district of La Boca (where Filiberto used to walk); it is a curve no more than 100 m. long. On this narrow, doorless street, with barely a few windows looking out on it and balconies with a multicolor assortment of metal sheets, geraniums, and clothes hanging from ropes, craftsmen, painters, dancers and street musicians crowd in a kaleidoscope of opportunities for the curious eye of the traveler. The walls of the buildings on the street are decorated with murals, tiles and diverse objects donated by important artists in the area. Long time ago, before painter Benito Quinquela Martín suggested calling the street by its current name, Caminito was merely a narrow-gauge railroad along which a freight train clattered wearily amid weeds and stones. Today, turned into a tourist attraction, the street combines the past and the present in the bright colors of its old buildings.As many claim, Caminito is a true outdoor museum; an emblem in the history and the present of La Boca, the traditional tango district of Buenos Aires. This tour is a must.
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