Tango DJ – Music for Milongas

it’s vital to have the right gear and to understand the technical requirements to provide a good experience

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Music for Milongas

It’s vital the dancers can engage fully with the music without being distracted by any aspect of the music or the sound.

Peter’s approach to DJing combines three elements to ensure the music is as good as it can be :

  • the individual tracks selected
  • the way the chosen music is combined throughout the event
  • the sound of the music as experienced by the dancers, dependant on the quality of the recordings and the sound system.

Golden Age Orchestras

Golden age music can sound very thin, partly because of how it was originally recorded, but equally because of the way it has been reproduced and modified through the vinyl years, then on to CD.  The resulting narow frequency range can be very wearing on the ear after an hour or so.

People sometimes believe this thin and scratchy sound to be “authentic”  because that’s the only way they have ever heard this music.  However, these orchestras would not have sounded like this when they were originally danced to – live! 

Specially re-mastered tango tracks are available where the audible hiss, crackle and even jumps, often associated with old music has been removed.  They represent the orchestras as they would have been heard when playing – live. 

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Creating the Sound

The music source is one side of the equation. Not all tango music is suitable for dancing. Many were simply to be enjoyed by listening to.  So careful selection and putting together tandas that gives a sense of being taken on a journey throughout the evening, is essential and a skill.

It must be complemented with carefully selected sound equipment, adequate to fill the room with sound, without being too loud or too quiet anywhere.  It needs to be adaptable so it can be tuned to the acoustics of different venues, and controllable to adapt to the ever changing dynamic and energy throughout the evening.

Using an inadequate number of speakers, replying perhaps on only two speakers at one end of the hall, then turning up the volume, will not create a good sound.

Bear in mind too, that different tracks were recorded at different times, so their sound quality will differ.  You need to monitor each track and adjust it accordingly.  No point sitting there with your earphones on listening to the next track, if the track playing is screechingly loud.

It’s very tempting for DJs to join the dancers for a tanda or two.  Unless you are absolutely certain you can rely on the tanda playing, and the equipment you’re using not to fail in any way, the risk is too great.

Where PA is already installed at a venue, it is sometimes of mediocre quality, and even thrashed by countless hours of disco music.  It is simply too risky to rely on unknown and untested gear for music as demanding and sensitive as Tango!

Invest in your own PA gear for reliability and peace of mind.

If the hall is unfamiliar, make sure you get there early enough so you can do good sound checks.  As the hall fills with people, the acoustics will change, keep on top of this too.

Live Music

Providing and managing the sound system for live music creates additional challenges for the DJ – it’s vital to have the right gear and to understand the technical requirements to provide a good experience for the both audience and the musicians.

What are you dancing to?

Peter pioneered the use of visual displays to inform dancers about the music being played – see pictures below.  We’re glad to see that some other DJs have now adopted this useful addition for dancers’ enjoyment.  You can put playlists on each table if you don’t have the equipment.

Peter has a rich musical background with over fifteen years’ experience dancing, teaching and as a tango DJ.  If you need any help contact – here

Projector & Screen on a Stage

TV Monitor & Stand on the floor