Posts Tagged ‘ 10 best female tango singers ’

1956, April 06 – FIRST RECORDED “MADRE”

The lyrics of “Madre” speak of  man who has hit bottom…he laments his wayward life, his abandonment in vice and worldly pleasures…he recalls the disillusionment of women who professed to love him and now deeply distraught, he realizes that without his mother’s guidance he has fallen and that she was the only one who truly loved him…no doubt composer Francisco Pracanico was inspired by his own sad and lonely childhood…having grown up in a destitute family, he had to quit school when he was no more than a child and began working as a shoe shine boy…working long hours, roaming the city by himself, he would assuage his loneliness playing the harmonica…the heart wrenching melancholy and nostalgia that was to characterize his immortal compositions, moved passersby to stop and marvel at the sensitivity of the boy…eventually one of his customers gave him an old piano which he repaired with make-shift parts he found on the streets; it became his passion…his debut occurred by accident; he was working in a musical cafe as a dish washer and one particular evening the piano player of the tango orchestra did not show up and the customers were increasingly restless….

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The owner, out of desperation, sent in young Francisco; it was to be the start of an incredible career…Francisco Pracanico became one of the most successful tango composers in history…Agustin Magaldi would have a hit with his “Afilador”, his “Mentira” was a hit for Carlos Gardel in 1932, his “Corrientes Y Esmeralda” would be a hit for Adriana Varela in the 1990s and even the legendary Maurice Chevalier premiered his “Tango Porteno” in 1925…Chola Luna, the vocalist of “Madre” was inclined to singing from an early age and she was much encouraged by her proud father; at age sixteen, he entered her in the famous Puloil Soap Singing Contest on Radio Belgrano and out of hundreds of contestants she was declared the winner…she sang with a number of orchestras including the influential Francisco Canaro…she later made a successful tour of  Europe with the Francisco Lomuto Orchestra…she was part of Eva Peron’s preferred list of tango artist but when Juan Peron was overthrownin 1955, Chola was not only blacklisted but threatened with imprisonment and so she exiled herself to Montevideo; “Madre” was one of the last tangos she recorded in Argentina

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CLICK HERE– http://www.todotango.com/

spanish/las_obras/Tema.aspx?id=xS70q+gbxgY= to hear Chola Luna sing “Madre” with the Miguel Calo Orchestra

1901, March 27 – BIRTH OF ENRIQUE SANTOS DISCEPOLO

Poet, Composer (Aires) – the best doctors of Buenos Aires were mystified… they had no explanation for the strange infection that was slowly withering away the body of Enrique Santos Discepolo….the truth was that he was dying of a broken heart…he had become ostracized for being a Peronista by his friends and fellow artists….they refused to speak with him, he was hooted in theaters and whistled in restaurants, pranks to embarrass the staging of his plays were not uncommon; he went into a deep depression and lost his appetite….but from the very beginning of his career it was the injustice and suffering around him which were precisely the themes of his legendary tangos “Que Vachachè”,  ”Yira, Yira”, “Calambache” which had made them popular all over the world…in his immensely popular radio commentary he said it all in his refrain, “I did not invent Juan Peron, he was born out of your corrupt governments, out of the misery of the poor whom you massacred, out of your cruelty and arrogance”…on 23 December 1951, at 11:20 pm the great poet and composer finally released the grip of the hand of his dear friend Osvaldo Miranda and died; he was fifty years old…

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Enrique Santos Discepolo was born in the neighborhood of “Once” in Buenos Aires to an immigrant father from Napoli who was an accomplished musician…nevertheless, both he and his wife died when Enrique was very young…he was left to the care of a rich, austere uncle who made him wear a tuxedo to dinner; in time a genius would emerge who not only wrote the lyrics to his tangos but the music as well, albeit with two fingers on the piano as he had no formal musical training…at the age of sixteen he began acting in his older brother’s plays…the first glimmer of greatness broke through in 1928 when Azucena Maizani sang his “Esta Noche Me Emborracho”…just days later it was popular all over the country; it soon caught on in Europe as well…this was also the year that he met Spanish singer Tania who would become his wife and life’s companion to the end of his days…his great masterpiece, ”Cambalache” had the peculiar privilege of being banned by all military dictatorships after 1943…Carlos Gardel’s recording of his “Yira, Yira” in 1930 is considered one of the greatest events in tango history…his collaboration with composer Mariano Mores would produce the immortal “Uno” which has been called the national anthem of tango…

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watch?v=PGVXtCCR9pk to hear Virginia Luque sing Discepolo’s “Sueno de Juventud” for which he wrote both the music and the lyrics

1963, February 23 – BIRTH OF CLAUDIA LEVY

Singer, Composer, Poet (Pisces) – the little girl gazed tenderly at her mother who was crying as she was strumming the piano, “He’s not coming back is he mommy?” she asked, “No darling he’s not”, she answered...”well”, said the little girl “lets tear up his tooth-brush”…somehow it was that moment of  a child’s simple vision which set her free; yes it was time to move on…the day would come when she would be grateful for the whole experience for from that day on, she began composing tango…she had fallen madly in love with a boy ten years younger and he had gone to New York on tour…in the begining, his emails were numerous and daily and then gradually more scarse…one day, she boarded a plane to New York to see him and the plane was uncommonly late; an omen…when she finally saw him, as he walked towards her, somehow she knew, “it’s over”Claudia Levy was born in Buenos Aires; her father was jewish and her mother catholic…her mother was a lover of cinema and she would tell little Claudia all about the films’ plots; Claudia credits this early experience as seminal in developing her later love of writing lyrics…

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Early on she demonstrated precocious musical talent and her father promptly enrolled her in the Conservatory Alberto Williams where she studied classical piano…later she studied dance and mime but at a certain point she found her creative soul in tango…along the way, she has made some people angry; she was a pioneer in a new genre, “woman centered tango”, in a world that historically has been very macho…using trademark sarcasm and humor she has brought awareness to the custom, still prevalent in Argentina and other nations, of men beating their wives and in some cases even killing them…her first musical group, a duo, was called “Tangachas”…with her second group, she began making a name for herself and went on a critically acclaimed tour of  Europe…this was followed by her participation in a third group “Munecas Bravas”…her first disc “Mentime Mas” is a compilation of her own compositions and lyrics…her second disc“Escuchame Un Segondo” has received rave reviews from critics and public alike…in one of her celebrated lyrics she says,“go ahead and cry for there is no Christ to save you…cry that crying is good for you…dismount your horse and come to the light of the day for only a coward beats his wife”

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1983, February 20 – “CHANY” DEAD AT 28

Luis Hernandez, an accomplished, self-made man, was stunned at his sense of powerlessness; his beloved Rossana was dying and he could do nothing about it…he had brought her to his country retreat away from everything where hopefully with his love and attention and prayer she might recover and yet inspite of it all, she was deteriorating…they were resigned to the inevitable but at least they could still get married, doctors assured them that there was time for that and so with great delight, they immersed themselves into the plans for that beautiful day ; but fate would deny them even this for on the evening on February 20, 1983 with him by her side, holding her hand, whispering of better things to come, she passed away…she was 28 years old…Rossana Ines Falasca “Chany” was born in Humbolt, Argentina on Aril 27, 1953 (Taurus) to Ado, a struggling  Italian immigrant tailor and Filomena Theler daughter of Swiss immigrants; she was the third of six children in a family full of music…

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Her father was a singer and in the evenings he had his own little group which brought in a little extra money…already from a young age Rossana was different, sensitive, inquisitive, philosophical and in fact later she would be a student of Zen and a practitioner of yoga….when Rossana was ten years old, Ado noticed her singing spontaneously in perfect pitch and he was inspired to create a singing duo of  ”Ado and Chany”…one day in a performance at the town of Rafaela, a producer from the show “Grandes Valores del Tango” heard Rossana sing and invited them to Buenos Aires…at her audition she sang one of the only two tangos she knew “Madreselva”; the response was electrifying and at the age of 16 she was offered a four-year contract…from there her career very quickly took off…in November of 1982 during a routine medical examination a malignant tumor was detected and she was immediately rushed to surgery; the prognosis however was not good…dealing with fear and pain, Rossana courageously continued her career completing tours of Latin America and the United States where she lived for a while…she was to star in three films…at her funeral one of  the legions of  her fans said, “I was only ten years old when I first heard you….you gave me the gift of so much tenderness and you shall always be in my heart”

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  • CLICK HERE – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CosGKs3YS1Y to see “Chany” sing in her last performance “Soledad” where the lyrics say, “I refuse to hear that from, your sweet life, you have torn me out…my soul pleads hopelessly for the call that will never arrive”

1998, February 12 – PREMIERE OF SAURA’S “TANGO”

Mario is devastated, his wife has left him for another man and to make matter worse, he has to see them together every day as they are dancers in the tango film he is making…the financier of the film, a powerful and dangerous man, asks him to give a part to Elena, a young, beautiful dancer who is his lover (Elena is played by Mia Maestro who would later star in “Frida”, another film with a tango scene in it)…Mario eventually falls in love with her and the two begin an affair together risking both their lives; in the mean time, the making of the tango film goes on….it is roughly a remake of the mythical Moglia Barth “Tango” of 1933…it won a nomination for an academy award and has won awards in film festivals all over the world primarily for the dancing and the cinematography which was created by academy award-winning Vittorio Storaro who also did “Last Tango In Paris”…”Tango”, one of the best tango films of all time was directed by renown Spanish director Carlos Saura, famous for his combination of passion and dance in films like  ”Carmen” and “Flamenco”…Janet Maslin, the New York Times critic was to write of the film, “Tango offers transfixingly beautiful glimpses of the dance and all the wide range of emotions it can conjure”

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One of the most exciting scenes in the film occurs when mythical tanguero Juan Carlos Copes dances with his daughter Joanna Copes…Copes is one of the last remaining of the great, authentic, tangueros of the golden era who has done everything in tango for 50 years…he began dancing as a young boy in the bars and clubs of Buenos Aires; his hero was Gene Kelly …but he had decided on a career as an electronic engineer when at the age of 20 he happened to win a tango contest in which 300 couples were competing…it launched a career which would take him all over the world…the film also featured a young singer Roxanne Fontana who would  go on to become one of the most gifted and versatile  tango singers in history…”Tango” includes a clip from the 1955 classic “Mercado De Abasto” in which Tita Merello sings her great hit “Se Dice De Mi”…Juan Carlos Copes got to meet his hero Gene Kelly who summoned him to his house in his waning days … “tango”, Copes  says, “is the only dance that allows imagination and creativity to form in three minutes and to become a history of love and of hate”.

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1927, February 9 – J.YANKELEVICH BUYS RADIO BELGRANO

Legendary singer Rosita Quiroga was to say, “In the beginning we were paid with cups of coffee”…in fact in radio’s nascent days, musicians performed for free; they were paid by copious amounts of food and wine which, for struggling, starving musicians, was very appreciated …it is believed that Rosita Quiroga was probably the first soloist on radio but she became equally famous with her fellow musicians for the ravioli she cooked in Radio Belgrano’s kitchens…Radio Belgrano was a failing enterprise when Jaime Yankelevich bought it from its frustrated owner Manuel Penella …but Jaime was an astute business man and he quickly imposed a new business model; he went to an all live, all night broadcasting  format where musicians were paid a salary and in return they gave an exclusive to Radio Belgrano...the station flourished and quickly became the station with the highest ratings in Argentina…it was considered a symbol of “having arrived” to be a Radio Belgrano musician; renown bandoneonist Luciano Leocata, for example, launched his career when debuted on Radio Belgrano in March of 1959… in later innovations, Jaime created the Argentine Broadcasting Chain which made viable, small low watage stations throughout Argentina which otherwise would have closed down…

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Indeed through Radio Belgrano passed the greatest tango musicians in history….there is no renown musician whose career was not touched or launched by Radio Belgrano; through its popular “new talent contests” many stars were discovered….Jaime Yankelevich was born in Bulgaria in 1896 to a struggling jewish family; when he was 3 years old his parents emigrated to Buenos Aires…as a teenager, Jaime found work in a  theater as an electrician’s apprentice; he eventually opened his own electrical supply shop…at a time when radio was beginning to boom, the shop specialized in radio valves and other equipment; Jaime even learned to manufacture his own parts….in the 40s, he opposed the election of Juan Peron which created problems for him when Peron came into power…when Peron moved to nationalized all media, Jaime finally sold his chain for 1.5 millom dollars in 1947 but astutely continued to manage the station and keep most of the earnings but relinquishing to the government the right of programming…in 1952 Radio Belgrano launched the first television station which became the mythical Channel 7

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1950, February 8 – BIRTH OF MIMI CHO

Singer (Aquarius) – the final diagnosis was in, he had accepted his fate; he was at peace even as his days were diminishing…he asked his beloved wife to record a CD of her inspirational music for him, “in this way I can hear your voice in heaven”, he said to her…these were immensely trying times for Mimi Cho; she would be left with the care and upbringing of her three daughters and one son; her deep faith would help carry her through…the same faith that helped the whole family move from South Korea to Argentina in 1988…it was her deep faith which she expressed singing in the choir of the Evangelist church…it had been her husband, in his supportive and loving way, to encouraged Mimi to enroll in the Franz Liszt Musical Studies Center to study opera with Aldo Moroni…one day while walking in her neighborhood of Villa Crespo (birth place of the legendary Osvaldo Pugliese), she heard Carlos Gardel singing “Mi Buenso Aires Querido” and it made her heart bleed, something had changed; tango was to be her destiny…

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With typical determination and discipline, she immersed herself into a serious study of its history, the dance, the orchestras, the music…she began taking lessons with the legendary Maestro Jose Colangelo who time later would say about Mimi “she was born to sing tango, she has the voice of an angel”…she then rounded off her preparation with Maria Eugenia Darrè, with whom she studied for 5 years…after years of study and dedication, the fateful day in 2005  had finally arrived; she did her first tango concert at the mythical Cafe Tortoni where she shared the stage with legendary poet Horacio Ferrer; the reception from its demanding audience was enthusiastic..“Never in my wildest dreams did I believe that one day I would be singing tango at Cafe Tortoni she commented afterwards…the next year she was invited to sing at the Bar Illustre de Buenos Aires; other venues were to follow…she is inspired by Susana Rinaldi, Luis Salinas and especially maestro Mariano Mores…with customary humility and gentleness in her voice she says “my ultimate dream is to sing at Carnegie Hall in New  York”

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