Agustín Barrios Mangoré

Submitted by admin on Sun, 09/25/2016 - 23:37

photo of BarriosQuotes

  • He cannot be a guitarist who has not bathed in the fountain of culture
  • In spite of a severe religious education, my primitive pantheism has pointed me in the direction of Theosophy, the most human and rational of philosophic concepts. I believe in the immutable laws of Nature. And Humanity and the Good impregnate my spirit as the ethical end of all existence.

Profession of Faith

Tupa, the supreme spirit and protector of my people,
Found me one day in the middle of a greening forest,
Enraptured in the contemplation of Nature,
And he told me: "Take this mysterious box and reveal its secrets."
And enclosing within it all the songs of the birds of the jungle
And the mournful signs of the plants,
He abandoned it in my hands.
I took it and obeying Tupa's command I held it close to my heart.
Embracing it I passed many moons on the edge of a spring fountain
And one night, Yacy (the moon, our mother),
Reflected in the crystal liquid,
Feeling the sadness of my Indian soul,
Gave me six silver moonbeams
With which to discover its secrets.
And the miracle took Place:
From the bottom of the mysterious box,
There come forth a marvelous symphony
Of all the virgin voices of America."

Barrios as Chief Nitsuge
Barrios as Chief Nitsuge


Known as Agustín Barrios Mangoré and Nitsuga (Agustin spelled backwards) Mangoré was born May 5th 1885, died August 7th 1944. He was a Paraguayan virtuoso classical guitarist and composer, largely regarded as one of the greatest performers and most prolific composers for the guitar. His music remained undiscovered for over three decades after his death, but is now much loved by guitarists, especially John Williams. He wrote more than 100 pieces for guitar, mostly quite short, and more than 300 songs (he would write the lyrics first and then the accompaniment).

There is a good article on his life here

From the article -

An exhilarating influence on many of Barrios' compositions is religion. At birth he was titled Agustín Pio Barrios, and from 1930 to his death he was recognized as Agustín Barrios Mangoré (Chief Nitsuga). In the year 1930, came the birth of Barrios' new persona, Cacique Nitsuga Mangoré, the "messenger of the Guarani race... the Paganini of the guitar from the jungles of Paraguay”.