The discographies of the tango orchestras are scattered all around the web. Below is my best attempt to make the relevant links all available in one place. When I found more than one discography for a given orchestra, I chose the one which seemed most complete and reliable. I plan to keep this post updated, so if you think I’m missing something, please let me know.
Update: See here for my current attempt to improve on these discographies. The links below will gradually link to my own discographies, as they become available.
D’Agostino’s milongas are underappreciated, and the last two numbers from this set are seldom heard at tango events. This is a pity because these songs are both a pleasure to the ear and very fun to dance to. The closing number, with its subtle dynamic and rhythmic changes, has now become an all-time favorite of mine.
When I started dancing and listening to tango music two years ago, I quickly discovered that one of the easiest ways to identify an orchestra was to pay attention to the final two chords of the song (the dominanc-tonic, characteristic “chan-chan” ending ). Each orchestra plays those chords in its own, distinctive way, so by learning how the chords sound like, one can infer the orchestra even of songs one is unfamiliar with. The video below, which I created a while ago for my own amusement, provides a sample of the tango endings of 20 of the most popular tango orchestras. I am now posting it here in case it is of interest to readers of this blog.
A “gently melancholic” tanda about things past (“la milonga porteña, que nunca más volverá“). I am not at all bothered by the fact that the first song was recorded more than a decade after the other three and does not feature Ángel Vargas–especially since ‘Café Domínguez’ is one of the most beautiful tangos of all time–, but purists might want to replace it with ‘Mi viejo barrio’ or ‘Quien tuviera dieciocho años’ (both from 1944 and sung by Vargas).