Monday, October 20, 2014

Milonga Sin Nombre "Homenaje a Miguel Caló y Donato Racciatti" playlist

It's great to be back home & to host another milonga in the beautiful Old North Church! 

This time, the special empanada flavor was banana - Maui lilikoi, and the special cortina flavor, the Hawaiian steel guitar of the late 20s - early 30s.

For bios of Miguel Caló y Donato Racciatti and my thoughts about their role in tango's history, please check the milonga flyer. And now, to the playlist:

01. Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental  "Marejada" 1941 2:32
02. Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental  "Don Juan" 1941 2:34
03. Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental  "El recodo" 1941 2:20
04. "Na Pua O Hawaii - George Ku Trio" 0:22
05. Juan D'Arienzo - Héctor Mauré "Dime mi amor" 1941 2:40
06. Juan D'Arienzo - Alberto Echagüe  "Qué importa" 1939 2:10
07. Juan D'Arienzo - Alberto Echagüe  "Nada más" 1938 2:43
08. "Palolo - Charlie Wilson" 0:27
I love Biagi's valses, but among them ""Dejame Amarte Aunque Sea un Dia" holds a special place in my memory, reminding me of a rainy evening in Prague and a milonga in a beautiful Art Nouveau pavillion perched high on a hillside overlooking the city, amid vineyards
09. Rodolfo Biagi - Andrés Falgás  "El ultimo adios (vals)" 1940 2:09
10. Rodolfo Biagi - Alberto Amor  "Paloma (vals)" 1945 2:29
11. Rodolfo Biagi - Andrés Falgás "Dejame Amarte Aunque Sea un Dia (vals)" 1939 2:55
12. "Lady Be Good - Sol Hoopii Trio" 0:23
Many orchestras played "Ninguna", but D'Agostino's is the dearest for me. There is strange personal touch there - as a genetic genealogist, I've got to know Ninguna's magnolia-skinned girl's real-life parallel. She was in her 70s then, and her birth name, 木蘭, a Chinese voice-over of Russian Юля (Yulya ~~ Julia), meant "magnolia flower", the name which also denoted the color of her skin she inherited from her mother. She was looking, in vain, for her untold past, for the families of the parents from the faraway Harbin she never knew after having been adopted by American missionaries, and I wondered if this song of the lady whose skin was like magnolia lit by moonlight, and of the gentle rain of tears of the eternity crying for the past which has gone forever, might give her any consolation.
13. Ángel D'Agostino - Ángel Vargas"No Vendrá" 1945 2:30
14. Ángel D'Agostino - Ángel Vargas  "A quién le puede importar?" 1945 3:11
15. Ángel D'Agostino - Ángel Vargas  "Ninguna" 1942 2:57
16. "Na Pua O Hawaii - George Ku Trio" 0:22
Beautifully archaic sound of di Sarli's sextet!
17. Sexteto Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental "Racing Club" 1930 2:34
18. Sexteto Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental "T.B.C." 1928 3:02
19. Sexteto Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental "Pobre yo" 1929 2:12
20. "Palolo - Charlie Wilson" 0:27
I picked this set of classic instrumental milongas for the first of my three Racciatti tandas for the night, to try to cover all genres. But in the end, after dancing to it, I wasn't super impressed. Better to rely on Racciatti's vocal recordings, especially the tangos he composed himself!
21. Donato Racciatti  "La Puñalada" 1:45
22. Donato Racciatti  "Silueta Porteña" 1:35
23. Donato Racciatti  "El Porteñito" 2:47
24."Lady Be Good - Sol Hoopii Trio" 0:23
Can there be a night of tango without Caló with the voice of Raúl Berón?
25. Miguel Caló - Raúl Berón  "Al Compas Del Corazon" 1942 2:48
26. Miguel Caló - Raúl Berón  "Que te importa que te llore" 1942 2:44
27. Miguel Caló - Raúl Berón "Jamas Retornaras" 1942 2:31
28. "Na Pua O Hawaii - George Ku Trio" 0:22
29. Enrique Rodriguez - Armando Moreno "El encopao" 1942 2:34
30. Enrique Rodríguez - Armando Moreno "Como has cambiado pebeta" 1942 2:37
31. Enrique Rodríguez - Armando Moreno "Yo no se porque razon" 1942 2:43
32. "Palolo - Charlie Wilson" 0:27
Vals super-hits:
33. Miguel Caló - Raúl Berón  "El vals soñador" 1942 3:32
34. Miguel Caló - Alberto Podestá  "Bajo un cielo de estrellas (vals)" 1941 2:37
35. Miguel Caló - Alberto Podestá  "Pedacito de cielo (vals)" 1942 2:21
36. "Lady Be Good - Sol Hoopii Trio" 0:23
"Hasta siempre amor" is definitely the highlight of this vintage Uruguayan tanda, but I really love all three:
37. Donato Racciatti - Olga Delgrossi "Queriéndote" 1955 2:49
38. Donato Racciatti - Felix Romero "Te burlas tristeza"  2:46
39. Donato Racciatti - Olga Delgrossi "Hasta siempre amor" 1958 2:57
40. "Na Pua O Hawaii - George Ku Trio" 0:22
This tanda of Caló's classics tangos includes one great track of his "reborn" Orchestra of Stars in the 1960s:
41. Miguel Caló - Alberto Podestá  "Yo soy el tango" 1941 2:46
42. Miguel Caló - Raúl Berón "La abandone y no sabia" 1944 2:50
43. Miguel Caló - Alberto Podestá  "Que falta que me haces" 1963 3:16
44. "Palolo - Charlie Wilson" 0:27
Aces of Candombe tanda v.2! (compare with the version from May) - here we have Caló's only milonga for the night, and to cap the tanda, another unsurpassed Uruguayan piece, Gavioli's "Tamboriles". I already mentioned Romeo Gavioli's short and tragic life on this blog when writing about an "erased page of tango history", the untold tale of Lita Morales. Romeo Gavioli is best remembered for his singing, alongside with Lita Morales and Horacio Lagos, for Edgardo Donato's orchestra. But Gavioli was also a talented violinist and composer. After Edgardo Donato's orchestra (which drew many talents from Uruguay to Buenos Aires) fell apart, Gavioli returned to Montevideo and, in 1943, organized his own orchestra, renowned for its candombes, full of Uruguayan spirit. 
45. Enrique Rodriguez - Armando Moreno "El tucu-tun" 1943 2:34
46. Miguel Caló - Raúl Berón  "Azabache" 1942 3:05
47. Romeo Gavioli "Tamboriles" 1956 2:56
48. "Lady Be Good - Sol Hoopii Trio" 0:23
Nina Miranda was the legendary voice which first launched Donato Racciatti's orchestra into fame. I recently wrote about her amazing life story here.
49. Donato Racciatti - Instrumental "La Viruta" 1972 2:30
50. Donato Racciatti - Nina Miranda "Tu corazón" 1960 2:32
51. Donato Racciatti - Nina Miranda "Gloria" 1952 2:47
52. "Na Pua O Hawaii - George Ku Trio" 0:22
Biagi's rhythmic goodness distilled.
53. Rodolfo Biagi - Jorge Ortiz "Humillación" 1941 2:42
54. Rodolfo Biagi - Teófilo Ibáñez "Gólgota" 1938 2:32
55. Rodolfo Biagi - Andrés Falgás "La chacarera" 1940 2:24
56. "Palolo - Charlie Wilson" 0:27
The name of Orquesta Típica Los Provincianos sounds like a snide kind of a reference to the world of Buenos Aires tango orchestras, in a classic Argentine divide between the provincials and the capital-city dwellers, the Provincianos vs. Porteños. Orquesta Típica Los Provincianos in the early 1930s was christened, and led, by Ciriaco Ortiz, a bandoneonist genius from the city of Córdoba, also famous for his sense of humor. The Provincianos left few records, but their valses are quite remarkable.
Orquesta Tipica Los Provincianos
57. Los Provincianos, Luis Diaz  "A Tu Memoria, Madrecita" 1934 2:45
58. Los Provincianos, Carlos Lafuente  "Un Placer (vals)" 1933 2:34
59. Los Provincianos, Alberto Gomez  "Samaritana (vals)" 1932 2:58
60."Lady Be Good - Sol Hoopii Trio" 0:23
61. Osvaldo Fresedo - Roberto Ray "Siempre es carnaval" 1937 3:27
62. Osvaldo Fresedo - Roberto Ray "En la huella del dolor" 1934 2:48
63. Osvaldo Fresedo - Roberto Ray "Vida mia" 1933 3:23
64. "Na Pua O Hawaii - George Ku Trio" 0:22
Less frequently played Caló favorites:
65. Miguel Caló - Jorge Ortiz  "Pa'que seguir" 1943 2:13
66. Miguel Caló - Jorge Ortiz  "De barro" 1943 3:10
67. Miguel Calo - Jorge Ortiz  "A las siete en el cafe" 1943 3:03
68. "Palolo - Charlie Wilson" 0:27
All-time fav milongas:
69. Carlos Di Sarli - Roberto Rufino "Yo Soy De San Telmo" 1943 2:20
70. Carlos Di Sarli - Alberto Podestá "Entre Pitada Y Pitada" 1942 2:33
71. Carlos Di Sarli - Roberto Rufino "Pena Mulata" 1941 2:27
72. "Lady Be Good - Sol Hoopii Trio" 0:23
73. Enrique Rodriguez - Armando Moreno "En la buena y en la mala" 1940 2:26
74. Enrique Rodriguez - Armando Moreno "Danza Maligna" 1940 2:37
75. Enrique Rodriguez - Armando Moreno "Llorar por una mujer" 1941 2:47
76. "Na Pua O Hawaii - George Ku Trio" 0:22
and we are getting into a dramatic homestretch of the final 3 crescendo tandas...
77. Pedro Laurenz - Alberto Podestá "Todo" 1943 2:37
78. Pedro Laurenz - Alberto Podestá "Garua" 1943 3:09
79. Pedro Laurenz - Alberto Podestá "Recien" 1943 2:43
80. "Na Pua O Hawaii - George Ku Trio" 0:22
The final track of the penultimate tanda was my recent surprise discovery. I already wrote about "Dark Eyes", the classic Russian Gypsy romance, and its influences in Russian and Argentine tango, and a little bit about composer Oscar Strok, the "King of Russian Tango", and Petr Leschenko, his most famous vocalist. Well, it turns that Strok-Leschenko's "Dark Eyes" actually made it all the way to Buenos Aires, where the orchestra of Florindo Sassone recorded a stunning interpretation of this 1920's Russian tango classic:
81. Alfredo de Angelis - Instrumental "Mi dolor" 1957 2:51
82. Alfredo De Angelis - Instrumental "Felicia 1969" 2:48
83. Florindo Sassone - Instrumental "Ojos Negros (Oscar Strok)" 1968 2:28
84. "Lady Be Good - Sol Hoopii Trio" 0:23
85. Osváldo Pugliese - Jorge Maciel "Remembranzas" 1956 3:41
86. Osváldo Pugliese - Roberto Chanel "Rondando Tu Esquina" 1945 2:48
87. Osváldo Pugliese - Roberto Chanel  "Farol" 1943 3:22
88. Juan D'Arienzo - Instrumental "La cumparsita" 1951 3:49
89. Damour Vocal Band  "Sway"  3:49
(89 total)

Let's celebrate Miguel Caló and Donato Racciatti!

-A Milonga Sin Nombre flyer -

October is the birthday month of Tango orchestra leaders Miguel Caló and Donato Racciatti! 


Miguel Caló 

28 Oct 1907 – 24 May 1972

A bandoneonist and an orchestra director, Miguel Caló started his music career with Fresedo's orchestra at the age of 17, and convened his first tango orchestra in 1928. During the Golden Age, Caló's orchestra was blessed with the amazing voices of  Raúl Berón, Alberto Podestá and Raúl Iriarte, and spectacular piano play by Osmar Maderna and Miguel Nijensohn. The early 1940s were the undisputed pinnacle years of Caló's tango. Miguel Caló composed such signature tango pieces as  "Jamás retornarás" and "Qué te importa que te llore", both recorded in 1942. And in the Dark Age of tango during the 1960s, he reunited the talents who played and sang with him in the past into "Orquesta de las Estrellas"



Donato Racciatti

18 Oct 1918 - 27 May 2000

The most famous Uruguayan tango orchestra leader, composer, and bandoneon player, Donato Racciatti was an immigrant from Italy and a late comer to the tango world. His orchestra has been formed only in 1948, and sustained itself primarily by touring small-town Uruguay and Brazil. It burst to continental fame after 1953 with the voices of amazing female singers, Nina Miranda (singing in this picture, with Racciatti on bando to the right) and Olga Delgrossi. Their signature pieces,  "Tu corazón", "Queriéndote", and "Hasta siempre amor", were all composed by Racciatti himself. Uruguayan public remained highly appreciative of Donato Racciatti's talent through the years which were marked by the loss of tango culture in the nearby Argentina, and he played and inspired until his death at the age of 81.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Chamuyo de gotán: time travel through tango history with the lyrics of its songs

Tango and its roots - is it a point of contention (as befits its being "rite and religion", per the famed quote) - or a point of connection? The connection which brings together ourselves, the music, the orchestras, the singers ... and where the lyrics may be the most elusive of the interlocking connecting elements?

In a presentation combining printed handouts, a slide show, and music, and titled, in proper Lunfardo slang, Chamuyo de Gotán, Talking Too Much about Tango, Derrick del Pilar tries to cover the history of Argentine tango from its obscure beginnings to the storied Golden Age - through its lyrics. With Derrick's permission, here are my annotated notes.


Enrique Binda, "Clarin" interview on the occasion of the 2nd edition of the book: "tango was born into a normal society, as existed in Buenos Aires at the time"; "[by 1910] it existed in the city center as well as in arrabal, in as many academias as prostibulos"; "who do you think was buying tango sheet music for piano by the thousands, hoodlums and whores or people who actually owned pianos?"
It all starts from the contention, obviously. The much-touted, much-discredited Borgesian brothel-to-Paris-to-high-society narrative is largely debunked, with the help of the 1998 book by Hugo Lamas & Enrique Binda, El tango en la sociedad porteña, 1880-1920, a product of 35 years of research which extensively analyzed the materials of the formative years of Argentine tango, from news reports to police records.

The brothel-to-Paris-to-beaux-mondes narrative of tango history may be traced back to a 1936 book of Hector and Luis Bates where they romanticized and exaggerated its outlaw, pimp-and-prostitute roots, and declared that tango remained totally unacceptable in the middle and upper class society at home until its return from Paris ca. 1913. However, Lamas and Binda prove that between 1902 and 1909, 3 millions copies of piano sheet music of tango have been sold, and at least 350 gramophone recordings pressed. Given that a gramophone cost several months worth of salary, not to mention what a piano cost, there is simply no question that tango was gaining very substantial following in the middle and upper classes of Buenos Aires much earlier. Even some of the earliest tangos from the 1870s and 1880s, formally anonymous, are thought to have been authored by a Spanish noblewoman and concert piano player, Eloise D'Hebril Da Silva. The police reports and regulations show that dancing took place in "academias" (dance schools/clubs which often had women for hire, and which were aggressively pursued by the police for violations such as ... staying open too late), drinking establishments, and theaters (including the most upscale ones, such as the Opera, where the parterre seats may have been removed for the occasions), rather than in BsAs brothels where the local law forbade dancing as well as drinking (one would have to leave the city to find brothels which also operated as bars and dancing halls). This said, of course sensual borders sexual, and an ethnic and social mix of a big city with its city music and dances juxtaposes against the homogeneity of the provinces and their native-born folk dances ... so it comes as no surprise that the early tango found many detractors among the conservatives and nativists, and was widely depicted as half-vulgar and déclassé in the media of the day. It also seems likely that upper-classes acceptance of tango as a national music form preceded the wider acceptance of tango dance and especially tango poetry. The macho underclass hero of the early tango letras (literally "letters", as the Tango lyrics are known) tells us a compelling story of tango's lowlife beginnings. Enter Villoldo's 1903 El Porteñito, the Little Son of Buenos Aires:


El Porteñito (1903)
Letra: Ángel Villoldo

Soy hijo de Buenos Aires,
Por apodo “El Porteñito”
El criollo más compadrito
Que en esta tierra nació.
Cuando un tango en la vigüela
Rasguea algún compañero,
No hay nadie en el mundo entero
Que baile mejor que yo...
Little Porteño
translated by Derrick Del Pillar

I'm a son of Buenos Aires,
they call me Little Porteño,
the toughest, coolest criollo
ever born in this land.
When one of my buddies
strums a tango on his ol' guitar,
there's no one in the whole world
who dances better than me...

The most classy milongas of the late 1890s and 1900s may have been held nightly at Lo de Hansen, or Restaurante del Parque 3 de Febrero, in Palermo, in the city's largest and fanciest park inspired by Paris's Bois de Boulogne (and, of course, commonly known as Bosques de Palermo). Mr. Hansen, a German immigrant, remodeled his 1869 park restaurant in 1877, as a part of redevelopment of the park. The new concessioners in the 1900s kept a fleet of five cars to ferry the guests around town at night. The daytime orchestra from Milan was being replaced by a tango orchestra for the night, and the rich and pampered daytime clientele, by the tango crowd with its share of malevos and shushetas and occasional fights and shootouts. The tabletops were made of very heavy marble slabs, lest anybody swings a table in a brawl. A posted sign asked the customers to please avoid tapping spoons or plates or bottles to the beat of their most loved tango tune, Villoldo's "El Esquinazo" (because the earlier ban on "tapping the rhythm with hands or shoes" proved to be inefficient, as the crazed guests invented other ways to accompaniment the music)! By 1908, quality tango salons started appearing elsewhere in the best neighborhoods of Buenos Aires, and the golden days of  old Hansen were gradually winding down. It was demolished in 1912. But the scene of tangoing at Lo de Hansen is lovingly reenacted in a 1937 movie, complete with fighting over choices of music, quebradas, boleos, and even a soltada. And the location has even seen an archaeological excavation in 2009, which unearthed bits and pieces of French floor tiles! (but the Porteo historians still argue if it was "the" dancing floor - in fact some oldtimers even insisted that the tango music there was only for listening, that dancing wasn't allowed and that there wasn't even room for it; while others, like Leon Benaros, wrote that many "disallowed" things were simply relegated to the back of the building, with its outdoor patio floor of white and black tiles ... and lots of bugs at night, so the women didn't sit in there - they were out in the front). 
If you listen to the recorded versions of El Porteñito, you'd quickly realize that the words of the 2nd and 3rd verses are just never the same. They are always improvised or perhaps intentionally tinkered with, as it would have been the rule in the era before the recordings, when the boastful and crude letras would change with the neighborhood. It was always the guys from this street who were the toughest fighters and the best dancers in their couplets.



Another accepted narrative links the birth of tango cancion, tango as a romance with set lyrics rather than improvised in the old payadores tradition, with the 1917 Gardel's performance of "Mi noche triste" (a.k.a. "Lita"). The fame may be exaggerated, what's so special about a song bursting onto the scene of some 3rd rate cabaret - we don't even know for sure which one - but there is no denying that "Mi noche triste" ended up being the first recorded tango romance, and that the talent of Carlos Gardel truly electrified this formative epoch of tango. The letras by Pascual Contursi are, well, sorrowful, even though the character may be the same porteñito of the previous decade, a pimp at the prime of his life, now speaking in Lunfardo of his lost chica (or rather percanta), in his empty bachelor pad (cotorro or bulin)


Mi noche triste (1915)
letra de Pascual Contursi

Percanta que me amuraste
En lo mejor de mi vida
Dejándome el alma herida
Y espina en el corazón.
Sabiendo que te quería
Que vos eras mi alegría
Y mi sueño abrasador.
Para mí ya no hay consuelo
Y por eso me encurdelo
Pa´ olvidarme de tu amor.

Cuando voy a mi cotorro
Y lo veo desarreglado
Todo triste, abandonado
Me dan ganas de llorar,
Me detengo largo rato
Campaneando tu retrato
Pa´ poderme consolar...
My Sorrowful Night
translated by Derrick Del Pilar

Deceitful woman, you left me
in the prime of my life,
leaving my soul wounded
and a thorn in my heart,
knowing that I loved you,
that you were my joy,
my burning dream.
For me there is no more comfort
and so I'm getting wasted
to forget about your love.

When I go up to my pad
and I see it all messy,
everything sad, abandoned,
it makes me want to cry;
I hang back a long time,
pining after your portrait
so I can console myself.


Ever since the 1872 epic "El Gaucho Martín Fierro" by José Hernández immortalized the image of the fearless outlaw, poet, and dueler of the Pampas in a classic payada verse, the gaucho remained a poetic symbol of Argentine people. But the times change. The 1926 "Mandria" makes a gaucho of a different era throw a poncho in a duel challenge - and then refuse the fight.

Mandria (1926)
 Letra : Juan Miguel Velich y Francisco Brancatti

... Esta es mi marca y me asujeto
¡Pa´ que peliar a un hombre mandria!
Váyase con ella, ¡La cobarde!
Dígale que es tarde
Pero me cobré...
Wretched
translated by Derrick Del Pilar

... This is my mark and it has kept me in check -
Why should I fight a wretched man?
Go with her, that coward!
Tell her that it's late
but I've made my claim.


 "El Mocho", "the Stub" David Undarz was called so because he lost a finger to an accident. El Mocho danced with his wife Amelia "La Portuguesa" (or sometimes remembered as "La Brasilera") under the scenic name Los Undarz. In the cabarets of the 1910s, in the fine theaters of the 1920s, wildly popular. El Mocho's trademark style was to showcase the follower, to make her moves and her footwork look stellar while the steps of leader himself remained understated. I'm sure you can recognize El Mocho's legacy in the unwritten rules of gender roles of today's tango dance! Progressing tuberculosis made El Mocho Undarz leave the city just before "Adios Arrabal" was composed; soon, he died, aged only mid 30s.

The other legendary dancer from the lines of Adiós, Arrabal, Ovidio José "Benito" Bianquet, was better known as El Cachafaz ("The Troublesome" / "The Outrageous" as the lunfardo word may be translated). In truth, both of his nicknames predated his tango fame - his mother called him "Buenito", "sweet little boy", to the cops who wanted to punish the nice little guy for some broken windows in the neighborhood, and his father called him "El Cachafaz", "the incorrigible rascal", after he's got a bit older and got in trouble with the girls. El Cachafaz must have been the first Argentine to try teaching tango in the US, before WWI; not much came out of it. But in 1919 he went to Paris and dazzled the City of Lights - he was remembered in Discepolo’s lyrics of "El Choclo" as "Caracanfunfa", a dancer with a fancy footwork who "carried the flag of tango across the ocean, and mixed Paris and Buenos Aires barrios into an intoxicating drink". As it turns out El Cachafaz wasn't finished at all in 1930, when Carlos Lenzi wrote the letras of "Adiós, Arrbal" - what happened was that he parted with Emma "La Francesita" Boveda, after more than a decade of dancing together. But in a year or two, "Cacha" met Carmencita, and they went on to win movie roles and awards together. Their photograph accompanies every article about El Cachafaz, but since we paused at a page of tango history when the two haven't yet met, I'm not going to include this picture. El Cachafaz died in 1942, age 55, slumped at a piano dressed in his best dance attire, waiting for a drink after a performance.
The Great Depression delivers a final blow the the figures of the compadrito and the gaucho - actually a horrible blow to the whole fabric of the civil society in Argentina. September 1930 brings what's known as Década Infame, the decade of corrupt governments and stolen elections. The 1930 "Adiós, Arrabal" is a song of longing for the sweetness and integrity of the days of the past.



"I won't ever change, but the old life of my mother neighborhood is gone forever" - insist the verses. It mourns the departure of the best dancers, of El Mocho, El Cachafaz. It bids farewell to "Rodríguez Peña", officially known as El Salón San Martín at Rodríguez Peña 344, just off Corrientes, which was one of the best tango salons of the early XXc. ( immortalized by a 1911 tango composed by Vicente Greco, who played there )


ADIÓS, ARRABAL
Letra : Carlos César Lenzi

Mañanita arrabalera,
Sin taitas por las veredas
Ni pibas en el balcón.
Tus faroles apagados
Y los guapos retobados
En tu viejo callejón.
Yo te canto envenenao,
Engrupido y amargao
Hoy me separo de vos.
Adiós, arrabal porteño,
Yo fui tu esclavo y tu dueño
Y te doy mi último adiós.
...
El baile “Rodríguez Peña”
El Mocho y el Cachafaz,
De la milonga porteña
Que nunca más volverá.
Carnavales de mi vida
Noches bravas y al final,
Los espiantes de las pibas
En aquel viejo arrabal.
Goodbye, arrabal!
translated by Derrick Del Pilar

Sweet morning in the arrabal,
no tough guys on the sidewalks,
and no dames out on the balconies,
your streetlamps all put out
and the pretty boys all passed out
in your old alleyway.
I sing to you venomously,
boastfully and bitterly -
today I'm leaving you.
Goodbye, arrabal of Buenos Aires!
I was your slave and your master
and here's my last goodbye
...
The dances at Rodríguez Peña,
el Mocho and el Cachafaz
of the milongas of Buenos Aires
that never shall return,
my life's great parties,
awesome nights and in the end
the blow-offs from all those dames
in that old arrabal.


As the 1930s march on, the things look increasingly bleak for Argentina. In 1932 Great Britain, the main export marker for Argentine beef, institutes a trade barrier system of "Imperial Preference", putting Argentine economy on its knees and forcing the country into a near-colonial dependence under Roca–Runciman Treaty. By 1935, Enrique Discepolo, perhaps the most pessimistic of the Great Bards of Tango, doesn't see any hope. The life is a hopeless mess, a pile of things which lost their past meaning on a shelf of a pawnshop. All the human beings are piled together there, and honesty and wisdom do not matter anymore:

Cambalache (1935)
Letras de Enrique Santos Discépolo

¡Que falta de respeto,
que atropello a la razon!
Cualquiera es un señor!
Cualquiera es un ladron!
Mezclao con Stavisky va Don Bosco
y La Mignon,
Don Chicho y Napoleón,
Carnera y San Martín…
Igual que en la vidriera irrespetuosa
de los cambalaches
se ha mezcla’o la vida
y herida por un sable sin remache
ves llorar la Biblia
contra un calefón.
Pawnshop
translated by Derrick Del Pilar

What a lack of respect,
what an affront to reason!
Anyone can be a baron!
Anyone can be a bandit!
Stavinsky and Saint John Bosco
go hand in hand with La Mignon,
Don Chicho and Napoleon,
Carnera and San Martín,
just as the rude window displays
of every pawnshop
have mixed up life itself
and you can see a wounded Bible
weep next to a boiler somewhere,
hanging on a hook.
Juan "Chicho Grande" Galiffi was
an infamous 1920s/30s hit man of
the Sicilian Mafia in Argentina

(Derrick explains that Stavinsky was an infamous swindler; Saint John Bosco helped underprivileged youth; La Mignon was slang for a call girl; Don Chicho a mobster, Carnera an itinerant boxer, and General San Martín, a national hero of Argentina's wars of independence; and the sable sin remache was a hook nailed on a toilet wall to spear newsprint or book pages for use as toiler paper)

Tango is reborn and reinvented with a new generation of dancers of the 1930s, most notably the D'Arienzo fans; new role for vocalists in the danceable tango - not just tango cancion - is pioneered by Canaro; Sebastian Piana revitalizes the obsolescent genre of a milonga, allowing it to become a vibrant dance. Yet the new milonga laments the bygone 1900s, and the sympathies of its main character remain with the honesty of the past:

Milonga del 900 (1933)
Letras: Homero Manzi

Me gusta lo desparejo
y no voy por la vedera;
uso funghi a lo Massera,
calzo bota militar.
La quise porque la quise
y por eso ando penando—
se me fue ya ni se cuando,
ni se cuando volverá.

Me la nombran las guitarras
cuando dicen su canción,
las callecitas del barrio,
y el filo de mi facón.
Me la nombran las estrellas
y el viento del arrabal;
no se pa’ que me la nombran
si no la puedo olvidar.
Milonga of the 1900s
Translation by Derrick Del Pilar

I like mismatched things
and I don’t go out on the sidewalk;
I wear a Massera porkpie hat
and military boots on my feet.
I loved her because I loved her
and ‘cause of that I’m hurting now—
she’s left me and I don’t even know when,
don’t even know when she’ll come back.

Guitars remind me of her
when they are speaking their songs,
so do the little neighborhood streets,
and the edge of my dagger.
The stars remind her name to me
and so does the wind of the arrabal,
I don’t know why they remind me of her
since I could never forget her…

The final verses of Manzi are almost never sung on the records, the lines there become palpably political, professing distrust to the changes of modernity, and loyalty to the legacy of Leandro Alem, founder of Radical Civic Union and the leader of 1890 Revolution, who took his own life in 1896.


Tristezas de la Calle Corrientes (Horacio Coppola - Buenos Aires 1936) 

 It's hard to count all the tangos which sing of Avenida Corrientes; a simple search in the Argentine tango lyrics website returns 159 texts! They tell of the old, narrow street of tango's formative years and the new wide Corrientes nearly purged of its tango history; of the grandeur and the squalor; of the real landmarks and the fictitious addresses, like the number 348, an illicit den of love, tango, and dimmed lights from Donato's 1925 "A media luz".

The 1933 "Corrientes y Esmeralda" charts all the contrasts of the city to just this one intersection, two blocks East of the Obelisk, where grand theater Odeón (#782) and popular cabaret Royal Pigall (#825) faced across the street not 200 ft from one another ... the street corner which was home to great poets and artists and to the thugs and drug-addicted call girls. In 1955 Julían Centeya recited a moving tribute to Café Dominguez, a few blocks West near the intersection of Corrientes and Parana, immortalizing the first Buenos Aires tango bar to stay open 24/7, where the quartet of the bandoneonist "Liendre" De Leone played in the 1910s and 1920s ... the cafe which was no more. The actual verses of "Café Dominguez" belong to Enrique Cadícamo who lived a block away, at #1330. And Enrique Discépolo's home was half mile further West, at #1990.

The sense of loss of tango history turns most palpable in Osvaldo Pugliese's 1961 tango, "Corrientes Bajo Cero", "Corrientes Below Zero". Roberto Chanel sings of Corrientes reborn as the crib of gotán, a place where Piazzolla's bandoneon sounds again, where the doors of "El Olmo" (at #948) and "El Germinal" (at the corner of Maipú, where Juan Maglio Pacho once debuted) have reopened, where the music of Pugliese himself rings at Teatro el Nacional (#960) ... but it turns out to be just a dream, and we wake up to find a frozen place where "El Marzoto", "El Ruca", and "El Tibidabo" are shattered, too! Yet, just close you eyes again, and then you may see a monument to Carlos Gardel rising side by side with the Obelisk...  (Needless to say Pugliese now got a plaza named after him, and a monument, at the corner of Corrientes and Scalabrini Ortiz).
But the best known Osvaldo Pugliese monument must be the one at the very end of Avenida Corrientes -  at his grave at Chacarita Cemetery, with the maestro's piano traditionally graced by red carnations as a symbol of his absence (whenever Pugliese was detained - and there were times when the authorities locked him up almost every weekend - his orchestra kept playing, but with a red carnatios placed on his piano to signify that the maestro can't be there with them, but is present in spirit). The whole world of tango's past is there at Chacarita. Its first band leaders, Villoldo and Arolas, are buried there; Gardel's chapel crypt is there, as is the modest grave of El Cahcafaz. A parcel purchased by Francisco Canaro has the graves of the greatest of tango's golden years as well as his own. Its greatest poets are there, Cadicano, Contursi, Discepolo, Flores, Manzi, Exposito, Centeya... Orchestra leaders - Troilo, de Caro, Laurenz, Fresedo, de Angelis, Malerba, Gobbi, Maffia, Varela, Maderna, Pontier, Bianco, Filiberto, Cobian... And, ever a maverick, Juan D'Arienzo rests in a different section of Chacarita.
Corrientes Angosta





Teatro Odeon
@ Corrientes & Esmeralda

At Royal Pigall,
Canaro's orchestra
played alongside
 a US ragtime band

We return to Corrientes street and tally our losses.

In a decade which passed since "Adiós, Arrabal", the famed avenida has lost more than half of its buildings, demolished in Depression-era public works for a massive widening of the old street, the street still remembered by the porteños with the one epithet, "Corrientes Angosta", "the Narrow Corrientes".

There is sadness, poverty, and despair under these street lines of the grand boulevard of the Obelisk and fine theaters and bookstores, and there is also acceptance of the fate. The song takes life as it is.

Old Corrientes by night 


Tristezas de la calle Corrientes
Letra: Homero Expósito (1942)

Calle
Como valle
De monedas para el pan.
Río sin desvío
Donde sufre la ciudad.
¡Qué triste palidez tienen tus luces!
Tus letreros sueñan cruces,
Tus afiches, carcajadas de cartón.
Risa
Que precisa
La confianza del alcohol.
Llantos
Hecho cantos
Pa´ vendernos un amor.
Mercado de las tristes alegrías
Cambalache de caricias
Donde cuelga la ilusión...

Triste, sí,
Por ser nuestra...
Triste, sí,
Porque sueñas...
Tu alegría es tristeza
Y el dolor de la espera
Te atraviesa.
Y con pálida luz
Vivís llorando tus tristezas...
Triste, sí,
Por ser nuestra...
Triste, sí,
Por tu cruz...
Corrientes Street Blues
translated by Derrick Del Pilar

Street
like a valley
of coins for buying bread,
dead end river
where the city suffers -
what sad pallor under your lights!
Your signs dream of crosses,
your posters, cardboard cackling
Laughter
that requires
liquor's confidence,
laments
become songs
to sell us a love,
market of sad joys,
pawnshop of caresses
where they hang up all our dreams.

Sad? Yes.
Because you're ours...
Sad? Yes.
Because you dream...
Your joy is sadness,
and the pain of waiting
cuts across you
and with faint light
you live weeping your sadness.
Sad? Yes.
Because you're ours...
Sad? Yes.
That's your cross...


Taking the cue from Homero Expósito, an actor, singer, and comedian Marcos Caplán, the Jewish enfant terrible of tango's Golden Era, made the "premature rumors of the demise of tango" the centerpiece of his show at Teatro Maipo. "It's a lie that tango has died!" - he would exclaim - "I'm going to slaughter it myself, right now!" - and then sing, mockingly, some tango hit of the season.
Marcos Caplán
But has tango lost its soul? Its rough edge? Has it become tame and tired? (Have you heard the story of the newspaper article declaring that tango has died? "El tango ha muerto", it appeared in "Caras y Caretas" ... in 1903)

Yo soy el tango 1941
Letra : Homero Expósito

Soy, el tango milongón
Nacido en los suburbios
Malevos y turbios.
Hoy, que estoy en el salón
Me saben amansado
Dulzón y cansado.
Pa´ que creer
Pa´ que mentir
Que estoy cambiado,
Si soy el mismo de ayer.

Escuchen mi compás
¿No ven que soy gotán?

Me quiebro en mi canción,
Como un puñal de acero
Pa´ cantar una traición.
Me gusta compadrear
Soy reo pa´ bailar,
Escuchen mi compás

Yo soy el viejo tango
Que nació en el arrabal.

Hoy, que tengo que callar,
Que sufro el desengaño,
La moda y los años.
Voy, costumbre del gotán
Mordiendo en mis adentros
La rabia que siento.
Pa´ que creer
Pa´ que mentir
Que estoy muriendo,
Si yo jamás moriré.
I Am the Tango
translated by Derrick Del Pilar

I am the tango of the milongas
born on the outskirts,
rough and tough.
Now that I'm in these fancy halls,
they think I'm tamed,
sappy and worn out.
But why lie,
why believe that I've changed,
if I'm the same as yesterday?

Listen to my beat:
don't you see that I am gotán?

I bust myself in my song,
like a steel dagger,
to sing about a betrayal.
I like to strut around,
I'm cool for dancing,
listen to me beat:

I'm the same old tango
born in the arrabal.

Now that I have to quiet down,
that I suffer from disillusionment,
fashion and the years,
I'll follow the tango custom:
I''ll bite my tongue
at the anger I feel.
But why think,
why lie
that I'm dying since I'll never die?

In the days "Una emoción" was composed, the listeners might have read its message of cleaner, humbler tango as a call for purge of the remnants of the underclass origins of tango (culminated several years later with the ill-advised Peronist proscription of lunfardo, which replaced letras and even titles of the tango pieces with censorship-approved mediocrity) or maybe a jealous partisan attack on the irreverence of "El Rey de Compás" D'Arienzo and his followers. Indeed Raul Kaplán, its composer (and probably the only Jewish fiddler to ever direct a tango orquesta tipica), firmly belonged to the camp of tango romanticism. But we now see the message of "Una emoción" through the prism of Gavito's legacy - as a passionate call for humble respect to tango's roots and for the mutual respect and community-building.
Finally - Una emocion 1943 - the beat of tango has permeated the city, its every corner. This nostalgic feeling, this loving and longing reflection of its past days, grows only more sweet and more enchanting every time when we hear it. Tango has become timeless; it no longer needs to pretend to be something convoluted, because it's so natural for this humble and deep emotion to resonate in our hearts. That's what we call Tango, and nothing more.
Una emoción (1943)
Letra : José María Suñé

...Envuelto en la ilusión anoche lo escuché,
compuesta la emoción por cosas de mi ayer:
La casa en que nací...
la reja y el parral...
la vieja calesita y el rosal.
Su acento es la canción de voz sentimental...
su ritmo es el compás que vive en mi ciudad.
No tiene pretensión,
no quiere ser procaz.
se llama tango... y nada más.
An emotion
translated by Derrick del Pilar

Wrapped up in a dream last night I heard it—
an emotion composed of things from my yesterdays:

The house where I was born,
the iron fence and the ivy,
the old carousel, the rosebush.

Its accent is the song of an emotional voice,
its rhythm is the measure that lives in my city—
it has no pretensions,
it doesn’t want to be lewd,
it’s called tango, and nothing more.
At the start of our era of the rebirth of tango, it was Gavito who carried the message of Una Emoción as an article of faith - so I must close this long post with an old, grainy video of Gavito's dance. See you on the dance floor!


Monday, September 8, 2014

Milonga Del Centro playlist, September 6 2014

Great turnout on a beautiful fall Moon night, thank you again for this amazing venue, Julianne, and thanks to all for coming!
01. Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental  "Germaine" 1955 3:14
02. Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental  "El abrojo" 1958 2:48
03. Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental  "Champagne tango" 1958 2:47
All of the cortinas were selected to conjure up the rain & to herald the arrival of the fall :)
04. Oleg Gazmanov  "Summer Rains"  0:26
05. Ricardo Tanturi - Alberto Castillo  "Recuerdo Malevo" 1941 2:33
06. Ricardo Tanturi - Enrique Campos  "Que Nunca Me Falte" 1943 2:42
07. Ricardo Tanturi - Enrique Campos  "Oigo tu voz" 1943 3:07
08. Sofia Rotaru  "Autumn Melody"  0:30
And some seasonal poetry themes too :) with the flowers dropping last petals ("A Magaldi") and withering from the frost ("Pobre Flor")
09. Alfredo de Angelis - Carlos Dante, Julio Martel  "Soñar y nada más" 1944-08-29 3:08
10. Alfredo de Angelis - Carlos Dante "A Magaldi" 1947 2:50
11. "Alfredo De Angelis - Carlos Dante - Julio Martel / Pobre Flor" 1946 2:40
12. Sofia Rotaru  "Autumn Melody"  0:30
I couldn't have enough listening to the best of the Old Guard in recent weeks, & dared to play not just one but two Guardia Vieja tandas tonight. These 1928-1930 Di Sarli's are to die for:
13. Sexteto Carlos di Sarli "Pobre yo" 1929 2:12
14. Sexteto Carlos di Sarli "T.B.C." 1928 3:02
15. Sexteto Carlos di Sarli  "Racing Club" 1930 2:34
16. Oleg Gazmanov  "Summer Rains"  0:26
It looks like Jacob has figured out Rodriguez's trick with the infamous final dropped note. Yes! BTW I posted lots more annotated music samples of Enrique Roriguez back when we celebrated his birthday at Sin Nombre.
17. Enrique Rodriguez - Armando Moreno  "Que lo sepa el mundo entero" 1943 3:32
18. Enrique Rodríguez - Armando Moreno "Como has cambiado pebeta" 1942 2:37
19. Enrique Rodriguez - Armando Moreno  "El encopao" 1942 2:34
20. Sofia Rotaru  "Autumn Melody"  0:30
I'm left guessing which is Mack's fav Donato milonga :) No "Ella es Asi"? Really?
21. Edgardo Donato - Horacio Lagos "Sácale punta" 1938 2:18
22. Edgardo Donato - Horacio Lagos "Ella Es Asi - milonga" 1938 2:35
23. Edgardo Donato - Horacio Lagos  "De punta a punta (milonga)" 1939 2:21
24. Alexander Dolsky  "At last, rainy September! (cortina 1)" 1979 0:15
25. Lomuto, Francisco - Jorge Omar  "A la gran muñeca" 1936 3:01
26. Lomuto, Francisco - Fernando Diaz  "Quiero verte una vez mas" 1940 2:29
27. Lomuto, Francisco - Jorge Omar  "Nostalgias" 1936 3:05
28. Oleg Gazmanov  "Summer Rains"  0:26
I must have been thinking about a "perfect tanda" with Pa'que Lagrimear at least since June. Here is my current best shot combining three orchestras (but two of them lead by the same director), vocals and an instrumental, but united by the mood and the sound of the epoch. Long live the Old Guard!
29. Sexteto Carlos Di Sarli - Ernesto Famá "Chau Pinela" 1930 2:36
30. Orquesta Tipica Victor (dir. A. Carabelli )  "Che, papusa, oi" 1927 2:37
31. Adolfo Carabelli -Carlos Lafuente "Pa'que lagrimear-1933"  2:39
32. Sofia Rotaru  "Autumn Melody"  0:30
The energy keeps building up!!
33. Rodolfo Biagi - Teofilo Ibanez  "Viejo porton (vals)" 1938 2:27
34. Rodolfo Biagi - Andres Falgas  "El ultimo adios (vals)" 1940 2:09
35. Rodolfo Biagi - Teofilo Ibanez  "La loca de amor (vals)" 1938 2:13
36. Anzhelika Varum  "Autumn Jazz"  0:20
37. Ángel D'Agostino - Ángel Vargas "A Quién Le Puede Importar" 1945 3:14
38. Ángel D'Agostino - Ángel Vargas  "Ninguna" 1942 2:57
39. Ángel D'Agostino - Ángel Vargas "Ahora No Me Conocés" 1941 2:35
40. Oleg Gazmanov  "Summer Rains"  0:26
41. Pedro Laurenz - Alberto Podest  "Todo" 1943 2:37
42. Pedro Laurenz - Alberto Podest  "Recien" 1943 2:43
43. Pedro Laurenz - Alberto Podest  "Garua" 1943 3:09
44. Sofia Rotaru  "Autumn Melody"  0:30
45. Carlos Di Sarli Roberto Rufino "Yo Soy De San Telmo" 1943 2:20
46. Carlos Di Sarli Roberto Rufino "Pena Mulata" 1941 2:27
47. Carlos Di Sarli Roberto Rufino "La Mulateada" 1941 2:22
48. Alexander Dolsky  "At last, rainy September! (cortina 1)" 1979, 1979 0:15
49. Miguel Caló - Raúl Berón  "Jamás retornarás" 1942 2:31
50. Miguel Caló - Raúl Berón  "Corazón no le hagas caso" 1942 3:00
51. Miguel Caló - Raúl Berón  "Tristezas de la calle Corrientes" 1942 2:46
52. Oleg Gazmanov  "Summer Rains"  0:26
I already mentioned Donato Racciatti, "the" Uruguayan tango orchestra, in April - and the fact that we might not have remembered the superb sound of his orchestra without the amazing voice of Nina Miranda. Nina's birth name was Nelly Hunter. At the age of 13, after seeing "Puerta Cerrada", a movie where Libertad Lamarque played the role of Nina Miranda, a tango singer in love against odds, the teenager pledged to become a tango singer and to adopt the name of Nina Miranda. Three years later, she made good on her pledge and joined an all-female tango band, Las Golondrinas, touring at home and in Brazil. Performing with Donato Racciatti marked the the high point of "new Nina's" tango career. It was soon cut short by marriage; her husband wouldn't allow Nelly to perform. Only at the age of 60, widowed, she burst into the music scene again! Racciatti has few records available to us to mix; here's my next shot at a tanda with Nina Miranda's unsurpassed "Gloria". 
53. Donato Racciatti - Instrumental "La Viruta" 1972 2:30
54. Donato Racciatti - Nina Miranda "Gloria" 1952 2:47
55. Donato Racciatti - Nina Miranda  "Tu corazón" 2:32
56. Anzhelika Varum  "Autumn Jazz"  0:20
57. Enrique Rodriguez - Armando Moreno  "En el volga yo te espero" 1943 2:40
58. Enrique Rodriguez - Armando Moreno  "Uno que ha sido marino! (vals)" 1944 2:57
59. Enrique Rodriguez - Roberto Flores  "Los Piconeros (vals)"  2:47
60. Sofia Rotaru  "Autumn Melody"  0:30
61. Edgardo Donato - Horacio Lagos / Lita Morales  "Chapaleando barro" 1939 2:21
62. Edgardo Donato - Romeo Gavioli / Lita Morales "Yo Te Amo" 1940 2:50
63. Edgardo Donato - Horacio Lagos / Lita Morales "Carnaval De Mi Barrio" 1939 2:25
64. Anzhelika Varum  "Autumn Jazz"  0:20
I wasn't 100% sure about the dance floor apeal these really late, dramatic D'Arienzos ... but it looks like when the energy is high and el gente is high on music, then it can fly!
65. Juan D'Arienzo - Instrumental  "Bar Exposición" 1973 2:33
66. Juan D'Arienzo - Instrumental  "La torcacita" 1971 2:31
67. Juan D'Arienzo - Instrumental  "Este Es El Rey" 1971 3:10
68. Sofia Rotaru  "Autumn Melody"  0:30
Slick, polished milongas from Canaro's fav quintet. Might have traded for something more grounded / more challenging in the final tandas of the milonga?
69. Quinteto Pirincho - Instrumental  "Se dice de mi" 1954 2:52
70. Quinteto Pirincho - Instrumental "El firulete" 1958 2:29
71. Quinteto Pirincho - Instrumental "La cara de la luna" 1959 2:29
72. Alexander Dolsky  "At last, rainy September! (cortina 1)" 1979, 1979 0:15
73. Alfredo De Angelis  "Felicia 1969" 1999 2:48
74. Alfredo de Angelis - Instrumen  "Mi dolor" 1957 2:51
75. Alfredo de Angelis - Instrumental  "Pavadita" 1958-06-25 2:55
76. Anzhelika Varum  "Autumn Jazz"  0:20
(Added Canaro's at the spur of a moment to stretch the music a bit beyond the announced closing time)
77. Francisco Canaro - Roberto Maida  "Ciego" 1935 2:57
78. Francisco Canaro - Roberto Maida "Condena (S.O.S.)" 1937 2:39
79. Osvaldo Pugliese - Instrumental  "Recuerdo" 2:54
80. Lidiya Ruslanova  "Valenki 1 (cortina)"  0:24
81. Osvaldo Pugliese "Corrientes Y Esmeralda" 1944 2:49
82. Pugliese, Osvaldo "Rondando Tu Esquina" 1945 2:49
83. Osváldo Pugliese  "Farol" 1943 3:22
84. Alfredo de Angelis - Instrumental  "La cumparsita" 1961 3:33
85. Goran Bregovic - Iggy Pop "In the Deathcar" 1999 5:13
Just a closing vignette; we'll have to play Pedro Maffia, and to talk about his role in tango history, in making bandoneon the voice of tango, in spurring Decaroist revolution and ushering the era of musical complexity of tango, and in turning milonga into a danceable genre of music, another time.
86. Pedro Maffia"Palomita loca" 1930 3:25
Orchestra Pedro Maffia (recently digitized by Beba Pugliese)

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Practica Del Centro playlist, July 16 2014

Aníbal "Pichuco"Troilo
July11, 1914 – May 18, 1975
We've just celebrated Anibal Troilo's 100th anniversary with a three-day tango party in Sun Valley, and of course I wanted to showcase El Pichuco's different sides in my music selection for the night :) In the end I got two very different tango tandas, a beautiful vals tanda and ... a lone milonga.
01. Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental  "El ingeniero" 1952 3:25
02. Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental  "Milonguero viejo" 1955 2:48
03. Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental  "Nueve puntos" 1956 3:25
04. Francisco Canaro - Ernesto Fama  "Tormenta" 1939 2:38
05. Francisco Canaro - Ernesto Fama  "No me pregunten porque" 1939 2:51
06. Francisco Canaro - Ernesto Fama  "Al subir al bajar" 1939 3:05
Aces of valses:
07. Aníbal Troilo - Instrumental  "Un placer" 1942 2:19
08. Aníbal Troilo - Floreal Ruiz  "Romance de barrio" 1947 2:36
09. Aníbal Troilo - Floreal Ruiz, Edmundo Rivero  "Lagrimitas de mi corazón" 1948 2:59
10. Lucio Demare - Juan Carlos Miranda  "No te apures, Carablanca" 1942 3:29
11. Lucio Demare - Juan Carlos Miranda  "Manana zarpa un barco" 1942 3:22
12. Lucio Demare - Juan Carlos Miranda  "Din don" 1938 2:32
A rhythmic Troilo randa:
13. Aníbal Troilo - Instrumental  "Milongueando en el cuarenta" 1941 2:33
14. Aníbal Troilo - Instrumental  "El tamango" 1941 2:36
15. Aníbal Troilo - Instrumental  "Guapeando" 1941 2:49
16. Carlos Di Sarli - Roberto Rufino "Pena Mulata" 1941 2:27
17. Carlos Di Sarli - Roberto Rufino  "Cuando un viejo se enamora" 1942 2:14
18. Carlos Di Sarli - Roberto Rufino "La Mulateada" 1941 2:22
19. Enrique Rodríguez - Armando Moreno "Llorar por una mujer" 19412:47
20. Enrique Rodríguez - Armando Moreno "Cómo has cambiado pebeta" 1942 2:37
21. Enrique Rodríguez - Armando Moreno "El encopao" 1942 2:34
I often play Fresedo with Roberto Ray for the sheer sweetness of tango, but of course it leaves out the other flavors of Fresedo. This time I wanted to play Buscandote, a darker kind of a favorite, and - a real rarity among tangos - with vers libre lyrics. My first hunch was, of course, to pair it with other Fresedo-Ruiz tangos ... and, as it often happens with one-of-a-kind recordings, I was left wondering if should have looked for its tanda mates elsewhere...
22. Osvaldo Fresedo - Ricardo Ruiz  "Cuartito azul" 1939 2:45
23. Osvaldo Fresedo - Ricardo Ruiz  "Y no puede ser (2)" 1939 2:26
24. Osvaldo Fresedo - Ricardo Ruiz  "Buscandote" 1941 2:49
25. Juan D'Arienzo - Instrumental  "Amor y celo" 1936-09-03 2:21
26. Juan D'Arienzo - Instrumental  "Valsecito de Antes" 1937 2:19
27. Juan D'Arienzo - Instrumental  "Pabellón de las rosas" 1935 2:54
These three Troilo's from the same year as the instrumentals I played before, yet they have a different quality, more stretchy, more dramatic ... and if I had a choice of playing just one Troilo tanda, then this would be the one:
28. Aníbal Troilo - Francisco Fiorentino  "El bulín de la calle Ayacucho" 1941 2:30
29. Aníbal Troilo - Francisco Fiorentino  "Maragata" 1941 2:46
30. Aníbal Troilo - Francisco Fiorentino  "Tabernero" 1941 3:18
31. Ángel D'Agostino - Ángel Vargas "A Quién Le Puede Importar" 1945 3:11
32. Ángel D'Agostino - Ángel Vargas "Ahora No Me Conocés" 1941 2:35
33. Ángel D'Agostino - Ángel Vargas, Julian Centeya "Café "Dominguez"" 1955 2:59
I must admit that Anibal Troilo doesn't strike me as a Great Milonga Musician - he's got some nice milongas (Papa Baltazar comes into my mind) but the best of them have different tempos and different textures and don't really fit together all that well into a tanda. So I opted for a mixed-orchestras milonga tanda - the one Troilo there must sound instantly and irresistibly familiar to most Russians for its similarities with the musical theme from a classic cartoon of our childhood, the 1965 "Boniface's Summer Break". Enjoy!

34. Anibal Troilo Francisco Fiorentino "Mano Brava" 1941 2:24
35. Rodolfo Biagi - Carlos Saavedra "Por la huella" 1948 2:47
36. Julio de Caro - Hector Farrel "Saca chispas" 1938 2:32
37. Edgardo Donato - Horacio Lagos, Lita Morales y Romeo Gavio "Sinfonia de Arrabal" 1940 3:07
38. Donato, Edgardo - Horacio Lagos "El Adios" 1938 3:09
39. Donato, Edgardo -  Romeo Gavio y Lita Morales "Mi Serenata" 1940 3:02
40. Alfredo de Angelis - Carlos Dante  "Fumando espero" 1956 3:24
41. Alfredo de Angelis - Instrumental  "El Tango Club" 1957 2:40
42. Alfredo de Angelis  "Pavadita 1958" 2:53
43. Pedro Láurenz - Alberto Podestá  "Todo" 1943 2:37
44. Pedro Láurenz - Alberto Podestá "Garua" 1943 3:09
45. Osvaldo Pugliese - Instrumental  "El monito" 1945 2:19
46. Osvaldo Pugliese - Instrumental  "Recuerdo" 1944 2:54
47. Osvaldo Puglieses - Roberto Chanel "Rondando Tu Esquina" 1945 2:49
48. Pedro Láurenz y Pedro Maffia - Instrumental  "La cumparsita" 1926 3:01
49. Quartango "Androgyne" 1999 4:30
50. Arabesque "Midnight Dancer"  3:42

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Milonga Sin Nombre del Solsticio playlist, 6/21/2014

The circumstances conspired to rob us from time needed to organize the milonga, but we still got great attendance and fairly smooth operation. We are extremely grateful to those who volunteered to help us, especially Dave, Andrey, Maria, Atakan, and Raina! It wouldn't have worked without you!
On the empanada front, the new flavor this month was my experimental peach-banana (inspired by Analia's banana empanadas from last month, and the first flavor to run out, hurray!). I checked the Internet, but most recipes asked for processed ingredients, and I really wanted to go from scratch, so I struck on my own:

One slightly under-ripe peach, finely chopped
3 bananas, cut in half-circles
Juice of half a lime
A tablespoonful of sugar
A tablespoonful of quick oats

Steam peach in a covered pot with a very small amount of water for 5 minutes, add sliced bananas, sugar, and lime juice, bring to boil, add oats and set aside to thicken (the relleno ended up a bit too juicy, perhaps one may choose to thicken more generously or to evaporate away some liquid?)

Much of the playlist ended up being added / deleted in a hurry, but I still enjoyed occasional discoveries of tango DJ's homework.
01. Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental  "El recodo" 1941 2:20
02. Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental  "Siete palabras" 1945 2:38
03. Carlos di Sarli - Instrumental  "Marejada" 1941 2:32
04. Russian Folk  "Kalinka-Malinka 2 (cortina)"  0:25
05. Juan D'Arienzo - Instrumental "El flete" 1936 2:58
06. Juan D'Arienzo - Instrumental  "Jueves" 1937 2:33
07. Juan D'Arienzo - Instrumental "El Cencerro" 1937 2:40
08. Victor Tsoy  "Gruppa Krovi (cortina)"  0:36
I had some trouble finding the 3rd Calo's record to go with the classic two valses (which are, of course, often paired with "El vals soñador"), and ended up choosing a Donato unusual. 
09. Miguel Calo - Alberto Podesta  "Pedacito de cielo (vals)" 1942 2:21
10. Miguel Calo - Alberto Podesta  "Bajo un cielo de estrellas (vals)" 1941 2:37
11. Edgardo Donato - Hugo del Carril "El vals de los recuerdos" 1935 2:18
12. Lidiya Ruslanova  "Valenki 3 (cortina)"  0:24
13. Osvaldo Fresedo - Roberto Ray "Adios Para Siempre" 1936 3:05
14. Osvaldo Fresedo - Instrumental  "Arrabalero" 1939 2:32
15. Osvaldo Fresedo - Roberto Ray "En la huella del dolor" 1934 2:48
16. Russian Folk  "Kalinka-Malinka 2 (cortina)"  0:25
17. Enrique Rodriguez - Armando Moreno  "No te quiero mas" 1940 2:18
18. Enrique Rodriguez - Armando Moreno  "Tabernero" 1941 2:33
19. Enrique Rodriguez - Armando Moreno "Llorar por una mujer" 1941 2:51
20. Russian Elvises The Red Elvises "Cosmonaut Petrov 1 (-3dB)" 1999 0:28
The quest to find tanda mates for Saca chispas ... and of course I was drawn to Canaro's "No hay tierra como la mia" but de Caro's sounded pretty intriguing ... however, just like with many De Caro records, the sound quality came out a bit too dull
21. Julio de Caro - Hector Farrel "Saca chispas" 1938 2:32
22. Quinteto Pirincho - Instrumental "Milongón (Milonga)" 1940 2:33
23. Julio de Caro - Hector Farrel  "No hay tierra como la mia" 1939 1:58
24. Maya Kristalinskaya  "Nezhnost (Tenderness)"  0:17
25. Carlos di Sarli - Jorge Durán "La vida me engañó" 1946 3:06
26. Carlos di Sarli - Jorge Durán "Duelo criollo" 1946 2:46
27. Carlos di Sarli - Jorge Durán "Un Tango Y Nada Mas" 1945 2:46
28. Russian Folk  "Kalinka-Malinka 2 (cortina)"  0:25
29. Ricardo Tanturi - Enrique Campos "Que Nunca Me Falte"  2:42
30. Ricardo Tanturi - Alberto Castillo  "Pocas Palabras"  2:21
31. Ricardo Tanturi - Alberto Castillo  "Así Se Baila El Tango"  2:34
32. Victor Tsoy  "Gruppa Krovi (cortina)"  0:36
The first of these light-hearted valses was used as a birthday dance, so I added Fru Fru to the list for everybody to enjoy a full-length tanda
Birthday Vals

33. Enrique Rodriguez - Ricardo Herrera  "Mañana por la mañana" 1947 2:49
34. Enrique Rodriguez - Roberto Flores  "Fru Fru (vals)"  2:57
35. Enrique Rodriguez - Roberto Flores  "Tengo Mil Novias (vals)"  3:08
36. Enrique Rodriguez - Armando Moreno  "Nyanzas y malevos" 1941 2:41
37. Lidiya Ruslanova  "Valenki 3 (cortina)"  0:24
38. Rodolfo Biagi - Instrumental "La Maleva" 1939 2:35
39. Rodolfo Biagi - Instrumental "El Trece 1938"  2:28
40. Rodolfo Biagi - Instrumental "Pura Clase" 1939 2:37
41. Russian Folk  "Kalinka-Malinka 2 (cortina)"  0:25
42. Carlos Di Sarli Alberto Podesta "No esta"  2:45
43. Carlos Di Sarli Alberto Podesta "Tu!...El cielo y tu!"  2:59
44. Carlos Di Sarli Alberto Podesta "Al compas del Corazon"  3:19
45. Edgardo Donato - Horacio Lago "Ella Es Asi - milonga" 1938 2:35
46. Edgardo Donato - Horacio Lagos "De punta a punta (milonga)" 1939 2:21
47. Edgardo Donato - Horacio Lagos "Sácale punta" 1938 2:18
48. Maya Kristalinskaya  "Nezhnost (Tenderness)"  0:17
This really must be a four-song tanda, with Carablanca!
49. Lucio Demare - Juan Carlos Miranda "Manana zarpa un barco" 1942 3:22
50. Lucio Demare - Horacio Quintan "Igual que un bandoneon" 1945 3:02
51. Lucio Demare - Raul Beron "Como se hace un tango" 1943 3:14
52. Russian Folk  "Kalinka-Malinka 2 (cortina)"  0:25
53. Juan D'Arienzo - Alberto Echagüe  "Nada más" 1994 2:43
54. Juan D'Arienzo - Alberto Echagüe  "La bruja (fast)" 1938 2:13
55. Juan D'Arienzo - Alberto Echagüe  "Pensalo bien (fast)" 1938 2:20
56. Rodolfo Biagi - Andres Falgas  "El ultimo adios (vals)" 1940 2:09
57. Rodolfo Biagi - Teofilo Ibanez  "La loca de amor (vals)" 1938 2:13
58. Rodolfo Biagi - Alberto Lago  "Amor y vals" 1942 2:48
59. Carmen Piculeata  "Egy kis cigainy dal" 2013, 2013 0:29
Saul Zhadan's handwritten score,
dedicated to "dear Celia" and entitled,
in Russian,  "Your eyes"
Gitana Rusa, a composition by Saul Zhadan, a Jewish fiddler from Uman', Ukraine, has been smuggled out by sea from Odessa as a wedding gift to his son, a Buenos Aires banker, just before Zhadan perished in the Holocaust, and eventually renamed and remixed in Argentina with a subtitle "Tango Europeo" - yet even with the sound of a BsAs ochestra, it retains one-of-a-kind musical flavor and remains hard to pair up with other records into a tanda. My solution was rather standard - to combine it with other records of the same orchestra - and alas, it gave me the weakest tanda of the night. Malerbo-Medina's Remembranza may be a more fitting choice.
60. Ricardo Malerba - Orlando Medina "Gitana Rusa" 1942 2:47
61. Ricardo Malerba - Orlando Medina "Embrujamiento" 1943 2:52
62. Ricardo Malerba - Antonio Maida "Encuentro" 1944 2:20
63. Russian Folk  "Kalinka-Malinka 2 (cortina)"  0:25
More lyrical Donato favorites:
64. Edgardo Donato - Horacio Lagos "El Adios" 1938 3:09
65. Edgardo Donato - Romeo Gavioli y Lita Morales "Mi Serenata" 1940 3:02
66. Edgardo Donato - Horacio Lagos, Lita Morales y Romeo Gavioli "Sinfonía De Arrabal" 1940 3:07
67. Lidiya Ruslanova  "Valenki 5 (cortina)"  0:36
68. Pedro Laurenz - Hector Farrel  "Abandono" 1937 2:32
69. Pedro Laurenz - Alberto Podesta  "Recien" 1943 2:43
70. Pedro Laurenz - Alberto Podesta  "Todo" 1943 2:37
71. Carmen Piculeata  "Egy kis cigainy dal" 2013, 2013 0:29
A solid vals tanda but at milonga's homestretch, the penultimate tanda may have had more spice, more drama and complexity in it
72. Pedro Laurenz - Juan Carlos Casas "Mascarita"  2:53
73. Pedro Láurenz - Alberto Podestá  "Paisaje" 1943 2:51
74. Pedro Láurenz - C. Bermudez y J. Linares "Mendocina" 1944 2:35
75. Lidiya Ruslanova  "Valenki 3 (cortina)"  0:24
76. Alfredo de Angelis - Carlos Dante  "Carillon de La Merced" 1957 2:50
77. Osváldo Pugliese - Jorge Maciel "Remembranzas" 1956 3:41
78. Osvaldo Pugliese - Roberto Chanel  "Rondando tu esquina" 1945 2:48
79. Juan D'Arienzo - Instrumental  "La cumparsita" 1951 3:49
80. Israel Kamakawiwo'ole  "Over The Rainbow" 2001 3:32
(80 total)