Tango in 1927

Electrical recording had become well-established by 1927. All the major ensembles of the day were busy in the recording studio. Complete tandas of instrumental recordings by Fresedo, Lomuto, and Maglio illustrate the performing style and repertoire of the period. I’ve included a fine version of La Cumparsita by Canaro.

Fresedo (Instrumental) 1927

Osvaldo Fresedo

The sound of 20s Osvaldo Fresedo is very different from the saccharine sweetness of his later years. Here, the musicians play with a simple and clear beat. Fresedo’s recordings at this time are overwhelmingly instrumental. Ernesto Famá joined the orchestra at the very end of 1927 – but only stayed a year.

  • Frases de amor (3-Sep-1927)
  • Arrabalero (26-Feb-1927)
  • Caminito (18-May-1927)
  • La cachila (15-Nov-1927)

The rather crackly transfer of Caminito can be cleaned up considerably. Here’s the opening of the same song, from my own library. There’s not much I could do to improve limited dynamic and frequency range, but I have eliminated much of the running noise.

Lomuto (Instrumental) 1927-29

Francisco Lomuto

Francisco Lomuto frequently recorded the same repertoire as his friend, Canaro. Both orchestras played in a similar style in this period too, but Lomuto had a heavier beat. If you are familiar with Fumando espero from the late Di Sarli recording with Argentino Ledesma (1956), this recording may come as a surprise. Orquesta Típica Victor also recorded it in 1927 in a similar style but with a lighter musical texture.

Bacán fulero has a great walking pulse. Patadura and Te aconsejo que me olvides (from 1929 & 1928 respectively) continue in that vein. Te aconsejo que me olvides adds irresistible syncopations that are great for dancing.

  • Fumando espero (20-Aug-1927)
  • Bacán fulero (11-Jun-1927)
  • Patadura (5-May-1929)
  • Te aconsejo que me olvides (15-Oct-1928)

Maglio (Instrumental) 1927

Juan Maglio (Pacho)

Pacho, as Juan Maglio was known, is almost unheard of now and his recordings are rarely played. His recordings have a strong pulse – great for dancing – and he was very popular in the 20s. He died in 1934, aged 54, so the whole of his output belongs in the guardia vieja period.

  • Ventanita de arrabal (5-Jul-1927)
  • La copa del olvido (5-Jul-1927)
  • Tuito es mentira (6-Dec-1927)
  • Perfume de mujer (15-Oct-1927)


Canaro (Instrumental) 1927

Francisco Canaro

This is a lovely and unusual arrangement of La cumparsita. It’s slow and tender, with an extended violin solo played in the lower register (from 1:10), a trick we later came to associate with D’Arienzo. The solo violin returns from 2:19, but now playing a counter-melody in a much higher register.

  • La cumparsita (17-Feb-1927)

Click here for ‘Tango in 1926’.

Click here for ‘Tango in 1928’.