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Finding Your Song

It should be that after a year or so of dancing to traditional tango music you can hear it well enough and have heard songs repeated enough, that you are starting to identify the type of music you like the best to dance to. Maybe you even have a favorite song.

Your favorite song, and your favorite type of music, can totally change over the course of your tango life, but you have to start somewhere. (I am talking about types of tango music here, not vals or milonga.)

When you immerse yourself in traditional tango music and you have had dances where you have fallen in love with the dance experience (maybe dancer included), then you are on your way to have a preference for one sort of music or another.

As a review: the Golden Age of Tango is between 1925 and 1955. We have about fifteen or twenty great tango orchestras (maybe more) from that period. You could say, then, that we have about fifteen or twenty different types of music because each orchestra sounds different from the others (some sound similar). You can simmer that range of music down to a collection of fewer types of tango music. There are many different ways to think about this, but here I divide it into four different tango sounds: 1. The early quartets. 2. The up-tempo, rhythmical sounds of the late thirties and early forties. 3. The melodic and balanced songs of the mid forties. 4. And the late, more dramatic, more orchestrated, and slower songs of the fifties.

Here are five great songs from each of these periods to give you a sense of the sound of this period. The questions to you are, Which period do you like the best? Who is your favorite orchestra? And, Which song or songs do you like to dance to the most? (For now, if you copy the title and paste it in YouTube the song will come up to listen to. Links to the songs will be added soon.)

1. The early quartets:

a. Guapito by Francisco Lomuto Orquesta (1928)

b. Soy un Arlequín by Carlos Di Sarli Orquesta (1929)

c. Recuerdo by Orquesta Tipica Victor (1930)

d. Llevatelo Todo by Fresedo and Fama (1928)

e. Alma en Pena by Canaro and Charlo (1928)

2. The up-tempo rhythmical songs of the late 30s and early 40s:

a. Nada Mas by D’Arienzo and Echague (1938)

b. La Pasao Pasó by Di Sarli and Rufino (1940)

c. Guapeando by Anibal Troilo Orquesta (1941)

d. Cielo by Biagi and Falgás (1939)

e. Argañaraz by Ricardo Tanturi Orquesta (1940)

3. The melodic and balanced songs from the mid forties:

a. No Creas by D’Agostino and Vargas (1943)

b. Jamás Retornarás by Caló and Berón (1942)

c. Oigo Tu Voz by Tanturi and Campos (1943)

d. Farol by Pugliese and Chanel (1943)

e. La Capilla Blanca by Di Sarli and Podestá (1944)

4. The later dramatic, melodic, slow, heavily orchestrated songs from the fifties:

a. Gloria by De Angelis and Dante (1950)

b. Indio Manso by Carlos Di Sarli Orquesta (1958)

c. De Floreo by Osvaldo Pugliese Orquesta (1950)

d. Historia de un Amor by Verela and Lesica (1956)

e. Corazón by Di Sarli and Pomar (1955)


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