Posts Tagged ‘ 10 best female tango singers ’

1908, November 24 – BIRTH OF LIBERTAD LAMARQUE

Singer (Sagittarius) – by the age of 18 she was already a professional actress on radio and theater, had made her first recording, had married, given birth to a daughter and was in the middle of a difficult divorce;…she was to have a long, highly successful career becoming the first female super star of tango and along the way enduring a series of seemingly never-ending mishaps…in 1935 she may have tried to commit suicide by jumping from a building, luckily an awning broke her fall and saved her life…born in Rosario Argentina, she was the daughter Gaudencio, a son of French immigrants (originally to Uruguay), who married a woman with six children; Libertad was their only mutual child…Gaudencio was a tinsmith by day and a cultured fiery political anarchist by night; in fact Libertad grew up in a household full of music, literature and fashionable ideas…

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Gaudencio started his daughter in theater at the age of seven where she frequently acted in his own plays full of provocative  ideas…Libertad was beloved by the public and when she was 12, Gaudencio decided that she was ready for Buenos Aires and so he moved the tinsmith shop and the whole family there…with a letter of introduction in hand from a journalist she was given a small role in the famous Teatro Nacional; she never stopped working…she married a theater promoter with whom she had a daughter but quite soon she realized it was a mistake and she would seek a divorce…during the shooting of the film “La Cabalgata del Circo” she got into a  argument with actress Eva Duarte “Evita” whom myth states that she slapped and which resulted in Libertad being blackballed…Libertad, in her autobiography, would deny that she had ever slapped Evita and Evita woul later denied any involvement in  her being ostracized but nevertheless all avenues in Argentina were inexplicably closed to her….Liberta emigrated to Mexico where she was eventually adored and worship to such a degree that Mexicans considered her one of their own; in fact it was from this venue that she would become an internationally beloved star…the output in her career is mind-boggling, over 800 recordings, 65 films and even the screenwriter for her film “Ayudame a Vivir”…she died at the age of 92 in Mexico City while performing in a “telenovela”

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1918, November 16 – BIRTH OF AIDA DENIS

Singer (Scorpio) – born in the neighborhood of Boedo, Buenos Aires, as a child of seven she was marveling  her parents with her escapes into singing with perfect diction mimicking singers on radio…her father was her first teacher; he began placing her into neighborhood festivals where she quickly gained a following …one day while listening to his favorite radio station Radio Belgrano, her father heard that the Puloil Soap Company was sponsoring a contest for girl singers and he decided the moment had come for a major test, to the delight of everyone, she won; she was 17 years …she was given an exclusive two-year contract with Radio Belgrano where she was accompanied by the acclaimed Jaime Vila guitar group…

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It was during one of her performances that she met a young man  about whom she would say years later “I loved him from the moment I laid eyes on him”….they married  in 1941 and for eight years she quit show business to devote herself to her family..In 1950 she returned to Radio Belgrano and that led to a collaboration with the orchestra of Roberto Calo; with him she made her first recording “Lagrimas de Sangre” and the milonga “A Mis Manos”…she was sought after by night clubs and was a favorite at “La Armonia” and “El Olmo” and later at the legendary “Cano 14″…In the late 1970s she recorded a new release entitled: “Tres Estrellas Para el Tango” to critical review…toward the end of her career she was a frequent guest at “Grande Valores Del Tango” on TV Chanel 9 which immortalized her in the memories of her beloved tango world…she once said, “I have never stopped being that girl of seven who each night would sit close to the radio to follow my tangos”

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1980, November 10 – BIRTH OF NOELLIA MONCADA

Singer (Scorpio) – as a child she hated tango, her father would start playing it at 7 in the morning on an old AM radio “it was a depressing sound” she would recall years later… she grew up in a poor neighborhood in the city of Rosario where she was surrounded by a beehive of chatting people, children playing, “asado” cookouts and impromptu guitar singers…one day in primary school, the choir director decided that the children would learn “El Dia Que Me Quieras” and suddenly during a rehearsal, it came to her,she understood tango and understood that it would be her life……her devotion to tango made her a bit of an oddball in school and it is here where, with much determination, she put together her first tango ensemble…at the age of 21 she made a highly courageous decision; to seek her fame in Buenos Aires…

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She began as a street performer doing theater and singing…she would recall the derisive looks of some of the passersby, “they did not understand that the street is the ultimate test and the ultimate teacher; you have to have energy and presence or you starve”...she went through a very difficult period but somehow she managed to eek out a living…she began working in humble night clubs where one day Ignacio Varchausky noticed her and asked her to join his renown orchestra “Arranque”; it was a dream come true…years later, in 2008, it was he who would produce, to critical acclaim, her first CD “A Tiempo” ….hercareer has taken her to Los Angeles with Horacio Ferrer’s “Maria De Buenos Aires, to Japan and Europe, to performances in Hong Kong with Tango X2 and with the renown Julio Boca Dance Company to the United States and Central America….along the way she found love and a newborn baby.

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1904, November 5 – BIRTH OF SOFIA BOZAN

With disarming frankness she would say – “Yes, I know that I sing off key…sometimes the music goes one way and I another but, what can I tell you that I sing it the way I feel it, from my heart”...inspite of it, or perhaps because of it, Sofia Bozan would come to typify the soul of Buenos Aires in a way which only Carlos Gardel could equal (she apparently had a different opinion for in an interview in August of 1929, she stated that while Carlos Gardel was admirable, it was really Azucena Maizani who was the true soul of tango)…she was its conscience and in the years in which tango had disappeared, old timers would pine nostalgically for the golden years of tango and invariably invoke the name of Sofia Bozan in their poems and literature…Carlos Hechin in his tango “Negra Bozan” would write, “beloved Sofia, soul of tango Argentino without equal, your noble soul is the expression of my city”..Sofia Bozan in “Cachada” (mockery) and “Lunfardo” (the peoples’ argot), would speak and dance as she sang to her legions of adoring fans and they would answer back perhaps shouting back some  affirmation or a challenge…they might interrupt her to request an encore to which, playfully reprimanding them, would comply with great delight…she became an early icon for women’s independance courageously saying things that were taboo for a woman of those times

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Sofia Bozan (Scorpio) was born in Balvanera neighborhood of Buenos Aires and by the age of 12 she was a professional dress maker…through the help of her famous cousiin Olinda Bozan she became a chorus girl in the Vittone Pomar Theater Company…she soon progressed to the renown Muini Alippi Theater Company where she discovered her talent and developed her act; she was only 14 years old at the time…she debuted as a singer with the tango “Canillita” through which she is credited with having created the sarcastic, funny tango genre which would be the hallmark of Tita Merello…she premiered the tango “Un Tropezon” with the Francisco Pracanico Orchestra; it would later be recorded by many musicians…she was, as well, an accomplished tango and milonga dancer; in fact in the film “Carnavales De Antano” she danced with the legendary El Cachafaz to the delight of both critics and fans…she would star in over 30 films including the celebrated “Luces De Buenos Aires” with Carlos Gardel and “El Patio De La Morocha”…at the age of 46 after a long and intensive career, she married Federico Hess and retired to finally devote herself to a family…however soon after, she was diagnosed with cancer which she battled valiantly but to which tragically she finally succumbed at the age of 53…she was once asked the indelicate question of her opinion of men and she responded, “if I was the kind of woman who would answer such a question, I would say ‘I am crazy about them’”

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2000, October 27 – PREMIERE OF “MALENA”

It was the film “Malena” that launched Monica Bellucci into the sultry, alluring, international sex star..she is a pheromone in the film effusing eroticism, sensuality, femininity and danger…one reviewer said that only Italy manages to produce women who are at the same time beautiful, sensual, intelligent and real…presumably, that somehow manage to not believe their own publicity; Sophia Loren and Claudia Cardinale come to mind…in one interview when Monica is asked about dealing with ageing when she is routinely described as one of movie history’s great beauties she said; “those are things that others say, not me, inside I am just a woman like all other women”…perhaps more than anything it was the scene in “Malena” in which Bellucci, alone in her house, in a suffused, surreal light, nude from the waist up, squeezes a lemon over her torso and rubs the lemon juice over her breasts that chiseled her image into the world’s libido…there is of course, a tango scene albeit a somewhat comic one…

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She and her lawyer Centorbi dance a tango in Malena’s house after he has managed to acquit her in a trial where she is accused of adultry…he chases her into her bedroom in lieu for his extravagant fees which she cannot pay and forcibly has sex with  her…Malena later turns to prostitution to survive; Bellucci also plays the prostitute Mary Madalene in “The Passion of Christ” and the prostitute Sylvia in “Brotherhood of the Wolf”…in an interview she said, “perhaps all women have a secret wish to be a prostitute if only just once”…the legendary Tita Merello was one of the few women who admitted to having once worked as a prostitute to survive…”Malena” has been called a cross between “Nuovo Cine Paradiso” and Fellini’s “Amarcord”; the common theme is the adolescent whose nascent sexuality is inflamed by an older woman…both “Nuovo Cine Paradiso” and Malena were directed by Sicilian director Giuseppe Tornatore; who won the Oscar for Best Foreign Film in 1989 …”Malena” was nominated for “Best Musical Score” which was composed by the renown Ennio Morricone

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1962, October 25 – JUAN CARLOS GODY RECORDS “HASTA CALLAO NO MAS”

Besides being one of the first women tango singers, Azucena Maizani was an accomplished composer…among her most popular compositions was the milonga “Hasto Callao No Mas” which was recorded by a number of artists including Juan Carlos Godoy who recorded it on October 25, 1962…the inspiration for Azucena Maizani’s compositions came from the tragic tales in her own life…at the age of 26 she had finally found the love that her romantic heart pined for when she married Juan Scarpino and her joy multiplied when they had a baby…however, just three years later the baby died; the profound pain and recriminations destroyed their marriage and they divorced…ten years later she again found her ideal man and he became her manager…when a scandal erupted because of his financial misdealingings, he committed suicide and she became the subject of speculations and accusations in the media…the pain and shame drove her into seclusion for a number of years…Francisco Canaro would write in his memoirs of the evening at the Boite Pigalle Night Club when he was approached by a young girl would asked if she could sing a song with the orchestra..

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During intermission he took the unusual step of letting her sing one song; not knowing her name she introduced her as “azabache”…it was the beginning of Maizani’s career which would include over 270 recordings with a number of orchestras and a number of films including Moglia Barth’s “Tango” in which she sang one of her masterpieces “La Cancion de Buenos Aires”…by the mid 40s her popularity had waned and when she died of a stroke in 1970 she was practically alone, poor and forgotten…Juan Carlos Godoy was born in the city of Campana in the outskirts of Buenos Aires…at the age of 14 the family moves to the neighborhood La Boca…he got hooked on tango when he heard Agustin Magaldi sing live…as a young boy he worked as a farm hand at harvest time and  in the evening they would get together and sing; thus he got hooked on singing….working in the Ministry of Public Works he would forfeit his weekly salary to gambling debts…he was about to give up singing to devote himself to a “serious” job to provide  for his family…one evening he was invited to dinner at a friend’s house and he sang for the guests…among the guests was a violinist who told him that RicardoTanturi’s orchestra was looking for a singer… at the audition he sang “Griseta” and he was hired. His career has taken him all over the world.

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1934, October 24 – PREMIERE OF “IDOLOS DE LA RADIO”

Francisco Canaro had the midas touch, everything he touched turned to gold; he was undboutedly the richest man in tango…there was however, one exception, the movie business…in 1934 he and Jaime Yankelvich, the legendary entrepreneur who founded Radio Belgrano created the production company Rio De La  Plata Films…inspite of the fact that it was thrown together and filmed in an old warehouse, “Idolos De La Radio”, their first film, was a great success; it was however the only film to make money…the film allowed people to see for the first time, the voices they knew and loved from the radio programs they heard…the plot was inspired by the fact that the radio station milieu is in fact an intimate one where human drama in all its variety unfolds…it was the same idea that Peruvian writer Maria Vargas Llosa used in his celebrated novel “Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter” which was published in 1977

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In fact “Idolos De La Radio” was the first of its kind and featured the radio stars of the day including Ada Falcon, Ignacio Corsini, Tita Merello, Tito Lusiardo, Dorita Davis and Ernesto Fama…the film also feature the Don Dean and his “Students From Hollywood” orchestra who in that period had recorded the hit “Bailando En Alvear”…Don Dean was originally from Oklahoma and had arrived in Buenos Aires for a performance….he was scheduled to proceed to Brasil but a revolution there delayed his departure…it was in that period that he met the love of his life, married her and remained in Argentina for the rest of his life…the critics loved the dancing of Tito Lusiardo and in fact in launched his career…the film ends gloriously with Ada Falcon and Ignacio Corsini singing “Mentir En Amor Es Pecado” (to lie in love is a sin)…Falcon refused to record it outside of the film but it became instead a hit for Charlo a few months later

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1902, October 15 – BIRTH OF CARLOS BAHR

The disappearance of the crew Mary Celeste “Ghost Ship”, in 1872 is often cited as the greatest maritime mystery of all time…it’s captain and crew, mysteriously disappeared from a ship that was shipshape, loaded with food and supplies and with the personal belongings of its passengers still on board…it has been the foder of mariner folklore and literature over time….a similar fate awaited the father of Carlos Bahr, an experienced sailor and the owner of a whaling ship…Herr Bahr was a stern, highly principled and proud German of jewish origin from Hamburg…at the start of World War I, he reassured his French wife Colette and their three children in their La Boca neighborhood home and dutifully set sail on his ship to offer his services to the fatherland…on the way however, like Captain Benjamin Briggs of the Mary Celeste, he and his ship mysteriously disappeared and were never heard from again….the Bahr family was devastated…young Carlos Bahr had to quit school and he began to roam the streets doing odd jobs to survive and often sleeping in what ever cover he might find…in time he discovered a voracious appetite for reading…

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Carlos Bahr (Libra) became self-taught in a wide variety of subjects becoming fluent in French, German, Italian…he would become the most prolific tango lyricist in history registering over 600 works in his name…his reading on the Spanish Civil War inflamed his imagination and he tried to volunteer but was rejected because of a lung problems…his first tango was “Cartas Viejas” written sometime in 1934….his first successful tango was “Fracaso” which Mercedes Simone recorded two years later…soon after that he won first prize with the milonga “Milonga Compadre” composed by Jose Mastro and recorded by Pedro Laurenz…it was while working at Radio Portena that his inspiration was first inflamed by a young, lovely singer Fina Ferro, a student of Luis Rubenstein…in 1942, inspite of a large difference in age, they married and moved to the neighborhood of Almagro…Carlos Bahr would pen the words to some of the most beloved tangos in history including “Manana Irè Temprano”, perhaps his best work, which would be hits for Raul Iriarte, Julio Sosa and Osvaldo Fresedo…others include “Cada Dia Te Estrano Mas” and “Corazon No Le Hagas Caso”

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1893, October 13 – BIRTH OF “TANIA”

By her own admission, Tania was superior and condescending toward the portenos when she came to Buenos Aires in 1927…she was an important Spanish singer and dancer and all the portenos, in contrast to their posturing and bravado, could speak about was how to find the money to put on a simple play…she finally lent them the money…but there was one man who was different; shy, timid, self-effacing the legendary Enrique Santos Discepolo would win her heart…”Chachi”, she would call him…but the worldly Tania had to be patient; there was a bit of protocol…there were the invitations to his house with the chaperones…the invites to tea with friends present and finally the day when he said, somewhat apologetically, “I have rented a small apartment on my own, would you like to come for coffee”…she went, she said packing night-clothes for one evening prepared to return the next day but as she was to say, “I stayed forever”….theirs would be a storybook relationship, until he died of a broken heart when his friends abandoned him for his support of Peronism

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“Tania”, born Anna Luciana Divis in Toledo Spain (Libra), to a father who was a military officer…motivated by sibling rivalry, to compete with her older sister who was an opera singer, she studied singing and acting….Tania, renown for her sense of humor, became a famous singer of “cuples”, brief satirical Spanish songs…her first husband was a famous dancer whose stage name was “Mexican”; together they formed  ”Tania-Mexican Dancing Partners”….Discepolo first laid eyes on her at the “Follies Bergere” where she was singing “Esta Noche Me Emborracho” a tango for which Discepolo wrote both the music and the lyrics…she would later record, to great acclaim, his “Cafetin De Buenos Aires”…it was Jose Razzano who made the formal introduction between them….she would become friends with Juan and Eva Peron and appear in three films…she had a famous conflict with Tita Merello when the later chose to testify on behalf of Discepolo’s son over an inheritance dispute…while Discepolo died young at the age of 50, she lived until the age of 106…when asked the secret of her longevity she answered, “I always have a whiskey with lunch”

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1957,October 11 – NINA MIRANDA GETS MARRIED !

On October 11, 1957 Nina Miranda was the happiest woman in the world…she had just married the love of her life….for 46 years they would have a good marriage…however, for love she made one big sacrifice; she ended a promising singing career…her new husband had asked to her leave singing, “continue, what for….you have everything”, he had said….in 2004 her husband died…in her deep remorse she turned to singing again and to her surprise she discovered that her voice was intact and at the age of 79 she returned to the stage to the delight of a grateful public…four years later, in a dream come true, she found herself singing before ecstatic crowds in France, England, China and Brasil…as a child she loved to sing and she would recount the story when once, in church, at the age of three, she suddenly began singing a tango she had heard on the radio to the embarrassment of her mother, a devout catholic…

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At the  age of 15, while watching her idol Libertad Lamarque in the film “Puerta Cerrada”, she decided that one day when she was a professional singer she would adopt as a stage name, the name of Libertad’s character in the film “Nina Miranda”… her first break came when she was invited to sing with an all girls group “Las Golondrinas” with whom she toured Latin America…in 1952 while waiting in a studio for colleague Ernesto Fama, the orchestra leader noticed her and asked her to substitute immediately in a recording session for a singer that did not work out…she protested saying, “but I don’t know the music, I haven’t practised it”…he responded, “you have a natural ear, you’ll do fine” (in fact she was completely self-taught)…the piece recorded that day,  “Maula”, became an instant hit…this led to an invitation to perform in the play “Tu Cuna Fue Un Conventillo” which had great success and where she premiered another hit “Tu Corazon”…many events followed including the creation of her own group…she wrote the lyrics to the tango “No Hagas Caso a La Gente” and the music to “Cancion Para Mi Amor” which was recorded by Colombian star Mirta Perez

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