To Hell and back

To Hell and back

Tango Festival Words

A couple of weeks ago I went to Hell – a small town just north of Trondheim, Norway, by invitation from Trondheim Tangoklubb, who were hosting the first edition of Tango in Hell.

The program was ambitious. A regular and an alternative milonga simultaneous Friday night, DJ seminar Saturday midday, a long afternoon regular milonga and again a regular and an alternative milonga simultaneous Saturday night. Sunday started out with a second DJ seminar and then a Cooldown regular milonga in the afternoon.

When I was asked to DJ at the event, I had the opportunity to choose whether I would like to Dj a regular or an alternative milonga. I chose the alternative on Saturday night, thinking that an alternative milonga would be what I normally do; mix golden age tango with a bit of Nuevo and Non-Tango.

At a regular four hour milonga, I would normally play around 25-27 tandas and 4 – 6 of them would be Nuevo or non-tango. So I thought – “they like an alternative milonga, I’ll give them 8 – 10 Nuevo or Non-Tango tandas”.

I then made a small playlist just as a teaser. Tree Golden age Tango tandas and two Non-Tango tandas uploaded it to Spotify and sent the link to the festival organizer.

Five minutes later he responded:

– Øøøhh Jacob is that the music you are planning to play at the festival??

Yes, I replied – a good mix of Golden age Tango, Nuevo, and Non-Tango.

Apparently, that was not what he had in mind …

So we had a long chat about how we could bring our different expectations together in an alternative milonga. I ended up agreeing to not play anything from the golden age and back. (or older?)

It wasn’t without fear I agreed to it – a milonga playing only modern, Nuevo or Non-Tango!

How would that work?

The next five weeks I worked my butt off to find, edit and create enough modern, Nuevo and Non-Tango tunes to fill a milonga with tango danceable music.

I ended up with a lot of new tandas and a lot of new tunes in my music library. From Dire Straits, Gary Moore and R.E.M over Ane Brun, Dido, Bebe, and Soha to Narcotango, Carlos Libedinsky to Bossa Tango Lounge Club

I had decided to use tandas and Cortinas for the Milonga and had made around twenty new funky Motown-like Cortinas to choose from. But after the first three tandas, I skipped the tanda/cortina thing and mixed the rest of the Milonga without it.

It felt like the tunes were working against me and I found it much easier to keep the flow of the floor when I relied only on the beat, key, and tempo of the tunes.

The dancers seemed to be very happy – there were dancers on the floor all night.

And I had a blast Dj’ing!

It will not be the last time that I Dj a full Milonga of modern, Nuevo or Non-Tango.

The core of a DJ’s magic

The core of a DJ’s magic

Inspiration Quotes Words

Read this article i The New York Times the other night and I think it’s spot on:

“A real DJ. is part shaman, part tech wizard, part crowd psychologist, all artist.
Many people claim the title, but far fewer embody it.”

“Good DJ’s are extraordinary artists, and great DJ’s are transcendent magicians.
The art requires extensive musical knowledge. It demands technical know-how.
It tunes one into a psychologist and reader of moods in order to gauge the whims of a dance floor.
And it insists that you spend days, weeks and years learning how to mix flawlessly.

That is the core of a DJ’s magic. The ability to blend, to weave two songs together and seamlessly
connect them in a way that continues the narrative you’re spinning on this night.”

By Selwyn Seyfu Hinds Dec. 30, 2017

Just “one” moment

Just “one” moment

Inspiration Words

Dj’ing is always a challenge
Playing the right tune
In just the right time
Creating an atmosphere
Take the dancers on a journey
To a galaxy beyond imagination

I create moods
Fill the dancefloor with happy dancing people
That – in my mind
All comes down to – love!

Making an ambience of love and romance
Get the dancers to forget
Their everyday worries
Their heartaches
Their pain

And just for a moment …
Just “one” moment
See the one in their arms
And fall a little bit in love


Photo rights:
Unknown dancers, Photo – Alexander Prischepov
Unknown dancers, Photo – micmac
Mariano “Chicho” Frumboli & Juana Sepulveda, Photo – shawnK

GOTAN night 2015 – Playlist

Events Music Playlists

GOTAN night 2015 – What a night….

First a whole day of workshops taught by Birki and Muzu from Holland. Then dinner buffet by Drud’s spirited cuisine and then Dj AppleJack for the rest of the night.
The room was lighted with hundreds of candles and the dancefloor was packed…. What a night!

Hope you enjoy the playlist