It's milonga time!
Well yes, you know me, in my world it's always milonga time and my preferred format would be MMTMMV but I have to live in the real world, that seems unavoidable. And so even this series follows the standard format.
This whole weekend would have been one grand milonga time for me: I was supposed to be dancing in Poland on a festival La Boheme. God was not willing, however, and gifted me COVID. Before you ask, I am fine; I had my two shots last year like good citizen should. Dance, I cannot, and so here's my compensation, such as it is.
I reviewed both albums by Cuarteto Soltango, and what I like about them a lot is how well they play technically while still playing for dancers. They, too, are sometimes seduced by the concert halls but I believe in them.
Incredibly, the two albums feature six milongas. They did not go as far as to make two tandas, each in the style of a single orchestra, but one can mix and match with some deliberation and thanks to the unique sound of the band, it will still make a very good sense indeed.
1) Estampa de varón (A major, 111 BPM)
2) Morena del 900 (D minor/major, 111 BPM)
3) El chapucero (A major, 116 BPM)
The first and last are in the style of Juan D'Arienzo, Morena del 900 is reportedly in the style of Julio De Caro. I don't know if you can tell but I can't; thankfully, it does not feature any idiosyncracies that would render it incompatible with the D'Arienzo of the opener and closer.
The last one is a little faster but not too much. Dancers probably won't even notice.
Yes, these milongas are pretty fast. You'll have to take the taste and technical competence of your audience into consideration.
Myself, I have recently started to play my milongas a little faster than before, because giving too much consideration and playing the slower milongas out of fear doesn't seem to convince the non-milonga people either. Better to take out the big guns and at least please the real fans.
Photo by takahiro taguchi on Unsplash