Tacho Guasu's Corner of the web


You are listening to the unforgettable guarania Mboraijhuasî





Paraguay's flag is unique in that the front and back are different. The first image is the FRONT of the flag

and this is the back




TACHO GUAZU LEGACY



{EARL TESSMAN}


Tacho Guazu is my name that originated in Paraguay. The history is as follows:

There was a man in Paraguay by the name of "Tacho I". Tacho is a nickname for musicians and "I" means small. "Tacho I" was famous all over Paraguay for playing his harp and singing along with it. He lived way out in the outback and had to walk 8 miles to catch a bus to go anywhere. He was about 75 years old and was a real campesino. He was tiny and weighed about 100 pounds, wore a leather cap, rubber soled sandals on his feet, and had about 4 teeth. He loved to play the harp for an audience and you could not get him to stop. People loved him.

He appeared in Asuncion, the capital of Paraguay, in a festival. While he was on the stage, the directors had to practically drag him off to get him to quit playing, so the other performers could come out and play. Luis Bordon, one of the most famous and sophisticated of harp players, came out in his white linen suit to perform. While he was playing, "Tacho I" came out from the wings and stood looking at Bordon playing, causing the audience to laugh along with Luis Bordon. Bordon told "Tacho I" to bring out his harp and they would both play together. They played beautifully together, as they both knew the root music and the folk songs that are the basis of Paraguayan music. This caused the audience to applaud wildly, and everybody had a great time.

The following Sunday, they allowed the visitors who were not part of the Festival musicians to play. I got on the stage, with Luis Bordon sitting in the front row of the audience and I said" You have seen "Tacho I" play, now it is your turn to hear "Tacho Guazu" play. Guazu in Guarani language means, "LARGE". Therefore, I was the LARGE "Tacho". I weigh about 260 lbs and it was easy to see the connection. After this performance, everywhere I went in Paraguay, people used to shout across the street or meet me somewhere and greet me with "Hi" "Tacho Guazu"! I have had a lot of fun with this, even having shirts embroidered with the name of "Tacho Guazu" above the shirt pocket. All the other harp players laugh when they see me.

"Tacho I" has since died as a pauper despite his fame as a folk harp player of the Paraguayan harp.





I subscribe to a web page on the INTERNET, that has information regarding the harp. One day I was looking at it and someone had posted a message that they wanted to know if anyone knew where they could get some printed music for Paraguayan harp. She also wanted to know if there were any harp teachers in the Philippines and Utah. (Strange combination) Her name was Susan Chase.

I has some written music for the harp and was willing to share it with her, so I wrote her back and said that I knew a lady who used to live in Salt Lake City, who was Miss America in 1985 and that she had played a Paraguayan harp for her talent.

When Sharlene Wells was Miss America in 1985, she came to Visalia for a program and I took my Paraguayan harp there and we played it together and had some fun doing it. I have written some articles for the Folk Harp Journal and had been looking for a way to contact Sharlene so I could write an article telling how she had won the Miss America contest.

When Susan Pace wrote back about the music, she informed me that Sharlene was her sister and lived in Salt Lake City. She gave me her address. I contacted Sharlene and she was thrilled that someone would write an article about her and the harp. I did an interview with her on the phone and wrote the article attached and it is being printed, along with her colored picture, in the Folk Harp Journal.

I subsequently met Susan Pace in Salt Lake City, where she was there with her husband, who works for Nuskin in Utah and the Philippines. I was there for my sister's funeral but spent some time showing her my harp. She was a great player also and learned to play in South America. The lady in the article, who was killed, was her mother. Cool!!!!! Small world.

(Tacho Guazu)




In Buenos Aires at Lino's shop with the great harpmaker himself






And in Paraguay with Ed Beeler,a true friend; and one of the great harp players of our times, Lorenzo Leguizamon.








Here are the words to one of your favorite guaranias :)








LINKS


Tacho's special page

Sharlene's story

Billie's page

Angel's page

Vixen's harps

A busker's life

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