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Famous Like Me > Composer > Y > Atahualpa Yupanqui

Profile of Atahualpa Yupanqui on Famous Like Me

Name: Atahualpa Yupanqui  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 31st January 1908
Place of Birth: J. de la Peña, Pergamino, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Profession: Composer
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia
Atahualpa Yupanqui performing for Radio Nacional, Buenos Aires. Source: Argentine National Archives

Atahualpa Yupanqui (22 January 1908 - 23 May 1992) was an Argentine singer, songwriter, guitarist, and writer. He is considered the most important Argentine folk musician of the 20th century.

Yupanqui was born as Héctor Roberto Chavero in Pergamino (Buenos Aires Province). His family moved to Tucumán when he was ten.

In his early years, Yupanqui travelled extensively through the northwest of Argentina and the Altiplano studying the indigenous culture. He also became radicalized and joined the Communist Party of Argentina. In 1931, he participated in the failed uprising of the Kennedy brothers and was forced to seek refuge in Uruguay. He returned to Argentina in 1934.

In 1935, Yupanqui paid his first visit to Buenos Aires; his compositions were growing in popularity, and he was invited to perform on the radio. Shortly thereafter, he made the acquaintance of Antonieta Paula Pepin Fitzpatrick, nicknamed "Nenette", who became his lifelong companion and musical collaborator under the pseudonym "Pablo Del Cerro".

Following further harassment from political foes, he left for Europe in 1949. Édith Piaf invited him to perform in Paris in June of that year. He subsequently toured extensively throughout Europe.

In 1952, Yupanqui returned to Buenos Aires. He broke with the Communist Party, which made it easier for him to book radio performances.

Recognition of Yupanqui's ethnographic work became widespread during the 1960s, and nueva canción artists such as Mercedes Sosa recorded his compositions and made him popular among the younger musicians, who referred to him as Don Ata.

Yupanqui alternated between houses in Buenos Aires and Cerro Colorado, Córdoba province. During 1963-1964, he toured Colombia, Japan, Morocco, Egypt, Israel, and Italy. In 1967, he toured Spain, and settled in Paris. He returned regularly to Argentina, but these visits became less frequent when the military dictatorship of Jorge Videla came to power in 1976.

Yupanqui died in Paris in 1992 at the age of 84.

Best-known songs

Yupanqui's best known compositions include Viene clareando, El arriero, Zamba del grillo, La añera, La pobrecita, Milonga del peón de campo, Camino del indio, Chacarera de las piedras, Recuerdos del Portezuelo, El alazán, Indiecito dormido, El aromo, Le tengo rabia al silencio, Piedra y camino, Luna Tucumana, Los ejes de mi carreta, Sin caballo y en Montiel, Cachilo dormido, and Tú que puedes vuélvete.


  • Piedra sola (1940)
  • Aires indios (1943)
  • Cerro Bayo (1953)
  • Guitarra (1960)
  • El canto del viento (1965)
  • El payador perseguido (1972)
  • La Capataza (1992)

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Atahualpa Yupanqui