Wednesday, April 28, 2010

This week Marcelo's music recommendation.

Pedro Laurenz, bandoneonist, director and composer (October 10, 1902 - July 7, 1972)

Full Name: Pedro Blanco Acosta (Laurenz was the last name of his mother's first husband)

A great tango personality, basically as bandoneon player and composer. Relatively less though still significant was his influence as orchestra director. He was a bandoneon player of great techniques, skilful with both hands (high and low-pitches), superb in sound, energetic in performances and vehement in phrases. He was the founder of a performance school. He composed outstanding tangos and wrote exquisite variations for pieces such as "Mala junta" and "Mal de amores". The climax of his trajectory came between the mid-20s and mid-40s. His first outstanding performances were with the today forgotten orchestra directed by the pianist Luis Casanovas in which also played, standing at his back, two violinists who would then become famous: Edgardo Donato (the composer of "A media luz") and Roberto Zerrillo. He also played for the orchestra of the bandoneon player Eduardo Arolas -for some, the greatest composer ever given by the tango- at the cabaret "Moulin Rouge". A major step in his career was his participation, in 1925, in the sextet of the violinist Julio de Caro who was then introducing revolutionary changes in the tango style. That same year, the Maffia-Laurenz duo -probably the most remarkable in the tango history- would record -just the two of them- their first two records with the Víctor company, including the tangos "Julián", "Buen amigo", and "Sonsa", and the foxtrot "Titina". Laurenz formed his own orchestra in 1934, as though envisaging that the instrumental tango needed a new style. He took Blasco with him and initially entrusted the piano to another De Caro follower -the today revered Osvaldo Pugliese. As from 1960 Laurenz formed part of the famous "Quinteto Real" a group of great soloists, such as Horacio Salgán (piano), Enrique Mario Francini (violin), Ubaldo De Lío (guitar) and Rafael Ferro (double bass). They recorded for Phillips and Columbia, in an attempt to make tango re-flourish with a bold renewal in rhythm. The Quinteto Real still exists but the only who remain from its original stars are Salgán and De Lío. As a composer -one of the greatest in the tango history- his work mingled with those of Pedro Maffia and the brothers Julio and Francisco De Caro but then it flew on his own. Among his best compositions, now classic tangos, are "Mala junta" and "Orgullo criollo" (both with the cooperation of Julio De Caro); "Amurado" (with Maffia); "Risa loca", "Berretín", "Milonga de mis amores", "La revancha", "Mal de amores", and "Esquinero". He also composed the music of several famous tangos known by their lyrics "De puro guapo", "Como dos extraños", "Es mejor perdonar" and "Vieja amiga". Read more...

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