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Thursday, 14 March 2013

Manos brujas

Happy Birthday, Rodolfo Biagi!

Nicknamed Manos brujas (spellbinding hands), some would say that Biagi's playful, staccato and upbeat style was critical to Juan D'Arienzo achieving such success, and bringing tango to a huge number of dancers.

In 1935, at the tender age of 19, Biagi was recruited as the pianist for D'Arienzo's orchestra. And what an energising impact he had! The story goes that one night D'Arienzo was running late for a gig, so the orchestra started playing without him, with Biagi setting the pace.  The public went wild and the rest is history.

It's interesting to compare Biagi's style in Paciencia (1937) with Fulvio Salamanca's in No mientas recorded only two years after Biagi had left to form his own orchestra. Both are D'Arienzo tangazos with excellent pianists, but Biagi stands out for me.  It's as though his fingers are smouldering on those piano keys.  Yet his restraint keeps us wanting more.

Here are Dany and Lucy, organisers of El Maipu (one of my favourite Buenos Aires milongas) dancing to Biagi's Quiero verte una vez mas after the crowd has gone home.

But best of all, are Biagi's playful valses. Who could possibly resist Dichas que vivi?



  1. Andy (Barcelona)21 March 2013 at 19:31

    All, all Biagi is marvelous. In my case, I prefer the instrumentals, for example: El rápido, El yaguarón, La marca de fuego, Pura clase, La maleva, etc. They have such an energy that one can't resist it. At the first beats my eyes urgently try to find a good dancer to share the experience.

  2. Andy (Barcelona)21 March 2013 at 19:52

    Speaking about great tangos to lisen or to dance, one of my very favorites is La maleva, but the Anibal Troilo vertion (and that doesn't mean that I don't like Biagi's version). Dance it with a good partner is absolutely magical.

  3. Hi Andy, Thanks for your comments and the video of you & Nieves dancing to Troilo's version of 'La Maleva' http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8JIbMssYY20
    Greetings from Adelaide!


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