With a happy heart and full of joy, as he sang in his mythical song, the incombustible Ramón ‘Palito’ Ortega begins to say goodbye to the stage with a tour in which he wants to thank the public for their support over so many decades of success: “It would be very unfair with life if I asked him for stiller “, affirms the Argentine musician in a talk.
The creator of dozens of records and a multitude of films as an actor and director – admired in Latin America and in countries such as Spain – is preparing, at 80 years of age and with a new album, to start the international tour “Gracias”, on December 11 in the Luna Park in Buenos Aires.
“Undoubtedly it has all the characteristics of a farewell because it will be more than 50 years since I started my tours and it seems to me that it is fine, that thank God I am very well, in good health, well in general terms and it is the moment, “ says Palito Ortega.
A goodbye that, for now, will not be total: “I’m sure I’m still going to record and leave things behind,” he clarifies.
ENJOY THE FAMILY
In explaining his decision, Palito Ortega remembers his contemporary artists who have already passed away.
“Practically all those who started with me are gone, and I don’t want to abuse this generosity of life of having let myself go this way up to here, much less I want to stop thanking people,” he adds, convinced of that ” unfair and ungrateful “ which would be if I asked for more from life.
With his wife, the actress Evangelina Salazar, who at the end of the 60s decided to retire to dedicate herself to her family and whom she considers the “common thread” of the clan, the singer has six children, also dedicated to the audiovisual or musical sector.
“There is a time when all you want is time to enjoy everything you have done, the family, those segments that come off the tree, which are the children, the grandchildren, and thank God I’m doing it “ reveals this vital octogenarian.
“Perhaps this present is the result of a way of life. Thank God I have not had addictions such as alcohol or cigarettes. Mine has been very calm, even from a very young age I was quite disciplined,” emphasizes Palito Ortega.
Learning left to him by his father, who died in 2003: “His word always appeared in the big decisions I had to make and made me reflect. “
A DIFFICULT CHILDHOOD
Born in the town of Rules, in the province of Tucumán, Palito Ortega had a childhood marked by scarcity and the abandonment of his mother.
“I was born in a very small town, a town with few resources, and at a very early age, I had to go out on the streets to earn a few coins to help the family. All of this is an experience that is shaping you. I was 16 to 17 years when I told my father that I wanted to come to Buenos Aires “, he evokes.
And his father agreed to let him seek a better future. Already in the capital, he began to chain jobs to survive, until one day he went from selling coffee with a radio to collaborating with it and entering the musical world.
Palito – a name that a manager gave him for his thinness – rose to fame on the television program “Club del Clan”, and then movies and travel came.
Among his memories of Spain is his contact with Joan Manuel Serrat, of whom he was his first editor in Argentina; or his collaborations and friendship with Pepa Flores (Marisol) or Rocío Durcal.
From her hit “Happy Heart”, which Marisol also popularized, she underlines that like “Happiness”, she was born at a very special moment in her life. “I think almost everything was always linked to my relationship with Evangelina. Many of the songs like ‘Corazón content were already there when I met her,” he acknowledges.
HUG OF SINATRA
In the 90s, Palito got into politics. Stopping the electoral advance of the military Antonio Domingo Bussi, responsible for crimes during the last dictatorship, encouraged him to run for governor of Tucumán, a position he held for four years. And he was also a senator and candidate for vice president of Argentina.
Now he presents his album “I take you under my skin”, a kind of tribute to Frank Sinatra, whom he hired in 1981 to perform in Argentina, an initiative that caused him great debts.
In the last hug at the airport (Sinatra) told me: ‘I know everything that happened to you, all I want is for you not to forget that whatever guarantee you need for any undertaking in the US, don’t stop calling me “, reveals.
So it was. Shortly after the family moved to Miami and “La Voz” helped them settle in. “Perhaps the moral is that if one behaves well in life, a reward always appears later, ” he concludes. EFE