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MP3 Mandragora Tango Orchestra - Let's Have Dinner and Go Dancing with the Mandragora Tango Orchestra

A Modern Tango Orchestra with roots in the Guardia Vieja (Old Guard)

13 MP3 Songs
LATIN: Tango, JAZZ: Latin Jazz

The Mandrágora Tango Orchestra is one of the few large tango orchestras outside of Argentina and is based right here in the Twin Cities. Perhaps you have caught them at the Theatre de la Jeune Lune''s production of Maria de Buenos Aires last spring, on Minnesota Public Radio, or on Sunday nights at the Loring Pasta Bar. They would like to invite you to the CD release party of their newest album, "Let''s Have Dinner and Go Dancing with Mandrágora". They will be hosting a milonga, or tango dance party to celebrate on Saturday, November 17th. You need not be a dancer to enjoy the allure of the tango, but you may find yourself drawn to their sultry rhythms all the same.

The Mandrágora Tango Orchestra is led by accordionist Bob Barnes, who founded the group in 2001. Mandrágora Tango started playing regular Sunday night milongas as a quartet and started to attract a loyal following of tango dancers. In 2003, Bob added a string trio and piano to the quartet and created the Mandrágora Tango Orchestra, which plays 3 or 4 milongas a year. In 2002, an elderly Argentine gentleman by the name of Max Valentinuzzi introduced himself to the band. Max had been playing tango piano for over 60 years and wanted to play with Mandrágora while he was in town visiting his daughter and grandchildren. He has taught Mandrágora a lot about the history and spirit of tango, and he recorded some songs for the CD. Considered to be the band''s tango godfather, Max will be hosting the Southern Hemisphere CD release party in Tucuman, Argentina on the same night.

"Let''s Have Dinner and Go Dancing With Mandrágora Tango" is a collection of tangos, vals (waltzes) and milongas (2-steps) recoded over the past year or so. The tracks range from rollicking guardia vieja (old style) tangos to lush epocha d''ora (golden age) ones, as well as some of Bob Barnes''s originals and a curious tango version of Nirvana''s Smells Like Teen Spirit. About half of the tracks are with the full orchestra: 2 violins, viola, cello, bass, piano and accordion. The other half are as a quintet: accordion, violin, guitar and bass with Max Valentinuzzi on piano.

The Mandrágora Tango Orchestra is Bob Barnes on accordion and bandoneon, Scott Matteo Davies on guitar, Dan Chouinard on piano, Christian Zamora and Laura Harada on violin, Nancy Svendals on viola, Carol Bjorlie on cello, and Leo Bjorlie on bass. You can download full versions of many of their recordings and read more about them on their website: https://www.tradebit.com

This is how to dance the tango!
Feel the blood rise to your face with every beat,
While an arm winds like a snake around a waist that is about to break.
This is how to dance the tango!
- Elizardo Martinez Vilas, 1942

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