The “Golden Age” of argentine tango music and dance is agreed to have been the years between 1935 and 1952. Argentine Tango was performed by Orquestas Típicas, bands often including over a dozen performers.
Some of the most popular and influential tango orchestras included the orchestras of Mariano Mores, Juan d’Arienzo, Francisco Canaro, Carlos di Sarli, Osvaldo Pugliese, and Aníbal Troilo.
- Juan D’Arienzo was called the “Rey del Compás” or “King of the Beat” for the insistent, driving rhythm which can be heard on many of his songs. “El Flete” is a great example of D’Arienzo’s approach.
- Francisco Canaro’s early milongas are generally the slowest and easiest to dance to; and for that reason, they are the most frequently played at tango milongas. “Milonga Sentimental” is a well known example.
- Carlos Di Sarli had a lush, grandiose sound, and emphasized strings and piano over the bandoneon. This style is heard in songs such as “A la gran muñeca” and “Bahía Blanca” (the name of his home town).
- Osvaldo Pugliese’s first recordings were not too different from those of other dance orchestras, but over time he developed a complex, rich, and sometimes discordant sound, which is heard in his most famous songs, “Gallo Ciego”, “Emancipación”, and “La Yumba”. Pugliese’s later music was played for an audience and not intended for dancing, although it is often used for stage tango for its dramatic style, and sometimes played late at night at milongas.
List of tango bandleaders during the Golden Age of tango:
Alberto Di Paulo
Alfredo De Angelis
Carlos di Sarli
Juan Maglio Pacho
Enrique Mario Francini
Jose Garcia Y Sus Zorros Grices
Juan de Dios Filiberto
Julio de Caro