From Tango FAQs Facts ebook.
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What music is played in tango events?
 The whole spectrum of music genres (divided in Tangos, Valses, Milongas) played in organized tango events is structured below; together with a comprehensive hierarchy per era in chronological order from top to bottom and left to right:

Classic
1895-1950s
Nuevo The music created and named by Àstor Piazzólla after 1956. This genre (his mature pieces mainly) is played rarely in the milongas due to its lack of a comprehensive dancing beat on its structure. Tango Nuevo is usually used for performances due to its rich musical elements. Àstor Piazzólla merged beautifully classical, jazz, and tango music elements in an unparalleled way that made him one of the most revolutionary composers of his time; surpassing all is predecessors. Some people falsely use the word Nuevo to describe the Electronic era/genre.

1956-1990s
Electronic The music created and named by Gotan Project after 1999; it includes the Milongas and Tangos (there is no significant effort to produce Valses). It is played numerous times in many milongas around the world and has fanatic followers (dancers and non-dancers too). It merges successfully electronic beats, samples, and breaks with elements from the Classic genre. This genre is responsible for bringing hundreds of thousands of young people closer to tango culture all over the world, and for making millions of sales, due to its vast contemporary and popular sound.

1999-current
Old Guard 1895 - 1925
Examples
1897: A.Menizábal - El entrerriano
1905: E. Saborido - La morocha
1911: V. Greco - Hotel Victoria
1916: G. Rodríguez - La Cumparsita
1920: E. Delfino - MilonguitaOrigins

Early G.A. 1925 - 1935
Examples
1926: J. De Caro - Guardia vieja
1928: R. Firpo - El amanecer
1932: E. Donato - El Huraćan
1935: F. Canaro - Casas viejas
Caro

Golden Age 1935 - 1950s
harder rhythm

softer rhythm

smooth

lyrical

dramatic

Examples
1935: J. d'Arienzo - Nueve De Julio
1938: E. Donato - Ella Es Así
1939: R. Biagi - Campo Afuera
1942: R. Tanturi - Asi Se Baila Tango
1953: A. Troilo - A Pedro Maffia
Anibal Troilo

Transition Era end of 1940s - late 1950s
Examples
1950: A. Troilo - Che bandoneón
1952: O. Pugliese - La yumba
1954: A. Gobbi - Cuatro novios
Osvaldo Pugliese
Àstor Piazzólla 1955: Chau Paris
1965: El Tango
1976: Bandoneón
1986: Tanguedia III
Àstor Piazzólla

Piazzólla's followers:
Fernando OteroFernando OteroWebsite

Marcelo NisinmanMarcelo NisinmanWebsite

Pablo ZieglerPablo ZieglerWebsite

Sergio AssadSergio AssadWebsite

Osvaldo GolijovOsvaldo GolijovWebsite
Gotan ProjectGotan ProjectWebsite

BajoFondoBajoFondoWebsite

Otros AiresOtros AiresWebsite

ElectrocutangoElectrocutangoWebsite

NarcotangoNarcotangoWebsite

TanghettoTanghettoWebsite

 The music genres played in one-night organized tango events (milongas) depend from the organizer, DJ, and the “kind” of the dancers. They can dramatically alter the success of an event, by controlling the floor's atmosphere and energy. Different music genres attract different people in these beautiful dancing gatherings. Tango dancers that prefer to dance mainly with close embraces, tend to go to milongas that play more or exclusively music from the Classic era. At the same time tango dancers that dance with open embraces or both, will likely go to milongas that play a combination of music from the Classic and Electronic eras.

 Experience tells us that the most popular milongas around the world embrace a fine balance from Classic and Electronic eras, and the three types of this music (Tangos, Valses, Milongas).


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