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Monday, 26 January 2015

Happy Birthday, Ricardo Tanturi!

El caballero del tango was born 27 January 1905, and was in his prime as a pianist, composer and most prominently as a band leader during the Golden Age of Tango. Collaborating with the popular singer Alberto Castillo, and then the more romantic voice of Enrique Campos, his orquesta produced numerous classics which I find simply irresistible. No traditional milonga is complete without Tanturi!

Perhaps the best known of these classics outside Argentina is Una emoción which featured in the credits of the film Assassination tango.

Listen to DDP's Favourite Tanturi Tandas which feature links to DDP's lovingly crafted translations of the lyrics. Tanda of the Week also treats us to a number of Tanturi treasures.

And for the more visually-oriented, take a look at milonguero Rubén Harymbat & Enriqueta Kleinman dancing to Recuerdo malevo (Tanturi/Castillo), and Carlitos Espinoza & Noelia Hurtado performing to Calla bandoneón (Tanturi/Campos).

Saturday, 10 January 2015

Getting the music #2

One good way of improving your tango is to listen to Golden Age dance music - a lot!

You start hearing, feeling and responding to more and more elements of this rich, multi-layered music. Ah, what a delicious pleasure it is to dance with someone who really gets the music.

But what about all those fabulous, danceable tangazos which are sung? What might you be missing if you don't understand Spanish, or in many cases Lunfardo? Some people dismiss the lyrics as unimportant. I've even heard tango lyrics derided as merely variations on the "She done him wrong" theme. But there's so much more to these stories of the barrio. I've found that having even a small inkling of the story to which I'm dancing totally enriches my tango experience.

Fortunately, a number of dedicated and talented souls are opening these doors to non-Spanish speaking tango enthusiasts. Take a look and get lost on the blogs of Poesía de Gotán, Tango Decoder and Embrujamiento.

Look up some of your favourite tangos, and then see if things change for you next time you dance.

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