Playlist:  Tango in Argentina and Around The World (Introduction to World Music: South America) by Jenna Makowski, Alexander Street Press

The tango dance developed at the turn of the century in Argentina and Uruguay. Modeled on European ballroom dance styles, the dance has evolved over the past century and spread around the world. Today, traditional tango, also known as Tango Canyengue, is considered to be the closest to the original as possible. The tracks in the playlist include composers and singers of early tango classics, as well as contemporary examples of Tango Nuevo music and accompaniment.
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La Cumparsita
performed by Various Artists; in 20 Orquestas - 40 Tangos (Pattaya, 2005), 3 mins  
La Cumparsita is the most well-known tango melody. Originally a march tune in Uruguay, it was orchestrated into its current form by pianist and conductor Roberto Firpo, a pioneer of the genre in Buenos Aires. (20 Orquestas - 40 Tangos. Pattaya, 2005.)
26 Dec 2013
Anclao En París
performed by Carlos Gardel; in Serie De Oro Vol 2: Carlos Gardel (Selasco, 2004), 2 mins  
Carlos Gardel was one of the most prominent singers in the early history of tango. His baritone range and dramatic phrasing of the lyrics left an impact on the genre still felt today. This track was composed by Juan D'Arienzo, one of the most popular composers of tango songs. (Serie De Oro Vol. 2: Carlos Gardel. Selasco, 2004.)
26 Dec 2013
in Homenaje A Juan D'Arienzo (D&D Producciones Fonograficas, 2005), 2 mins  
A composition by, Juan D'Arienzo, a leading tango composer. Listen for the bandoneons, the concertina, a central instrument in traditional Argentinian tango accompaniment. (Homenaje a Juan D'Arienzo. D&D Producciones Fonograficas, 2005.)
26 Dec 2013
Unión Cívica
performed by Various Artists; in Tango Canyengue (Pattaya, 2006), 2 mins  
This track is the typical sound and style to accompany Tango Canyengue, considered to be the earliest and "purest" style of tango. Dance characteristics include a closed embrace and an almost march-like rhythm. (Tango Canyengue. Pattaya, 2006.)
26 Dec 2013
Las Cuatro Estaciones Porteñas / Verano Porteño
performed by Astor Piazzolla, 1921-1992, The Gryphon Trio; in Tango Nuevo (Groupe Analekta, Inc., 2008), 6 mins  
In the 1990s, a new style of tango emerged called Tango Nuevo. From a dance perspective, the dance incorporates elements of modern dance and movement within the tango framework. Concurrently, tango (both dance and music) has become an international style. In this recording, Gryphon Trio, a classical trio from Canada, explores tango melodies within a classical framework, incorporating the spirit of Tango Nuevo into their performance. (Tango Nuevo. Groupe Analekta, Inc., 2008.)
26 Dec 2013
El Angel: Introducción Al Angel (Piazzolla)
composed by Astor Piazzolla, 1921-1992; performed by Ensemble Libertango; in El Angel (Laika Records, 2006), 5 mins  
Astor Pantaleon Piazzolla was best known for creating modern tango styles that incorporated elements of classical music and jazz. Listen for elements of classical art music in this tango piece, where the traditional bandoneon is accompanied by a lush string orchestra reminiscent of Romantic-era stylings. (Astor Piazzollo: en Angel. Laika Records, 2006.)
26 Dec 2013
Subtango, The Spirit of Tango
written by Sofia Vaccaro, fl. 2000; directed by Sofia Vaccaro, fl. 2000; produced by Sofia Vaccaro, fl. 2000 (Watertown, MA: Documentary Educational Resources (DER)), 59 mins  
Watch! Even after a century of history, after enshrinement as the national music, after rampant commercialization and packaging for export, the tango still speaks to the Argentine soul. Subtango shows how tango music, dance, art and poetry are an essential part of the emotional expression of regular people, featuring the gamblers, ramblers and barroom prophets of the Buenos Aires night, playing weather-beaten accordions and singing old tangos of heartbreak and resentment. Through interviews with the citizens of this subterranean world, the film expands on the tango’s lugubrious aesthetic, the origins of its melodramatic lyrics in the laments of alienated immigrants, the sensuality and profound communication of its dance. The film explores the faded old bars where the nightcrawlers of Buenos Aires come to dance and drink amidst the peeling paint and thick clouds of smoke. Subtango is a portrait of that world of tango that lies closest to the true meaning of what tango is in Argentina.
26 Dec 2013
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