Review by Ian Mole
Before I went to Buenos Aires I knew from my friends that The Beatles were very popular there but it was interesting to see at first hand the extent to which their music remains alive to thousands of fans.
The Beatles Museum, in Paseo La Plaza off Avenida Corrientes, and the Cavern Club next door are the epicentre of Beatledom in B.A. The museum was created in January 2011 by Rodolfo Vazquez and the thousands of items on display are only part of his private collection which holds the Guinness Record for Beatle artefacts.
|Lautaro Pirruccio, drummer with
"The Boys", a junior Beatles Tribute Band
with all the boys aged 11 and 12
I visited it one afternoon and enjoyed spending thirty minutes or so looking at such original items as a letter from Aunt Mimi to a fan and the numerous Beatles records and souvenirs from all over the world. I actually found myself being called on to talk to a group of schoolchildren in the John Lennon Room about the time I saw the Beatles in November 1963 at the height of Beatlemania. While I was the Cavern Club, a competition for Beatles tribute bands was taking place, which only highlighted the enduring popularity of the Beatles in Argentina.
Of the several Beatles tribute bands I saw during my visit, for me the best was The Shouts, who I saw at the Teatro Coliseo in La Plata. The group features Fernando Lotito as John, Bernado Criscuolo as Paul, Bernado Rapallini as George and Adrian Olivieri as Ringo.
They greeted the audience in the beautifully-restored Teatro Coliseo in Spanish and continued to link the numerous songs with amusing banter in their native language. Accompanied by keyboard player Guido Spina and at times by a three-piece brass section they performed over twenty-five songs from the full range of the Beatles' career and went through suitable costume changes as the years rolled by. The standard of playing was very good and the vocals were virtually free from a Spanish accent. The theatre was almost full with around seven hundred present as the two-hour show began and I think I can say that a splendid time was had by all. After the show the group came out into the theatre foyer and posed for photos with the fans who were waiting there as well as signing numerous autographs. (For more information on the band see www.theshouts.com)