Time goes by and this year it turns 40 years since the release of Libertango (1974), one of the most famous albums by Italian Argentine composer, arranger and bandoneon Astor Piazzolla (March 11, 1921 – July 4, 1992); an album that led, or led him, to new sounds.
After composing albums without a break, and heart attack suffered in 1973, Piazzolla moved to Italy; In Rome he would keep on recording albums steadily — as he was already doing — thanks to the 15-years contract that Aldo Pagano— producer and one of the partner of Curci-Pagani Music — had offered to him to record basically everything he wanted, a more than tempting offer for the prolific musician.
His stay in Italy helped him to study and experiment with new sounds like classical and jazz music, something that would begin to be reflected in Libertango (Liberty+Tango); and that for some, it is the Piazzolla passage from Classic Tango to New Tango, this latter term discussed. In the words of expert dancer and tango teacher Gustavo Naveira, New Tango (Tango Nuevo) does not describe a new style (invented by the composer) but it is everything that has happened with the tango since the 1980s, i.e., its evolution, improvement and development.
In any case, the importance and impact of Libertango cannot be taken lightly; the first named song of the album has been covered ad nauseam, appearing in over 500 releases of different artists from all over the world. The best known is perhaps the one that Grace Jones performed in 1981 in her album Nightclubbing; the Jamaican singer would also add lyrics to her cover version describing the darker side of the Parisian nightlife, something that fitted like a glove to Roman Polanski for some of the key scenes of his film Frantic (1988). However, the cover version would not fit and would not be included on the soundtrack composed by the great maestro Ennio Morricone.
Libertango, 36 min. May, 1974, Carosello Records. Producer Algo Pagani. Recorded at Mondial Studio, Milan Italy.
- “Libertango” 2:45
- “Meditango” 5:36
- “Unndertango” 4:07
- “Adios Nonino” 5:35
- “Violentango” 3:31
- “Novitango” 3:31
- “Amelitango” 4:00
- “Tristango” 6:58