A refined connoisseur of tango and its secrets. The art of conducting the milonga very personal, with the voice like the main parameter in his selection. The great singers who have made the history of tango, to fascinate all tangueros with their melody. Now we know another great dj, that made the night in the most important European events: Christos Pater. A TangoDj surfing on the wave of emotions 'cause, as he says himself: "The biggest pleasure i get from the milonga is the interaction with the people and the satisfaction they get".
From the beginning : I suppose that your first approach with tango,like for other dj, was with the dance. What inspired you to get into console and play music? A conscious decision or was the result of chance?
I was lucky to be close friends with Ramu Pyrredy, a popular DJ in the states. He was the one one who introduced me to tango and luckily i had the chance to spend lots of time with him, listening to him talking about the music and about dancing. A few months later and for a period of one and a half years, i moved to a place with no tango where practically the only contact i had with tango was through music. I had the chance then to listen to tango music for lots of hours and learn the songs and the orchestras. I guess after that it was a matter of time for me to start DJing.
What were your early taste of tango? There are significant differences with the current scene?
Back in the old days i was much more focused in the 40's, now i am looking more in the decades right before and after. Now I enjoy playing more and more melodic songs and the choice of the voice is the main parameter in my selection.
Do you remember your first time like tango dj?
My first DJ set was piece of cake because i replaced a dj who literally would play the same tanda twice:) what i remember was my inability to control my energy after the milonga. Sitting in the same
spot for a few hours without dancing to the music was a new experience for me. So i ended up in bed without being able to sleep! That was something new to me.
The difficulty of the search for songs on cd often burned, the explosion of the Web and the consequent relatively easy to find in the music. Do you think this paradigm shift has changed the way of working of the DJ?
Yes, it has changed some aspects of the dj work like the music research and the collection expansion but not the main dj task which is the selection of the music.
When you build your performance? Long ago, during the journey to the milonga, or sudden moment by moment?
I find it more interesting to select the music on the spot. Using a playlist is a definitely a "safe" option but cannot lead to a great performance. For this you need to be more interactive with the dancers. I think having a playlist is more useful in big festivals where the audience is more diverse and therefore trying to focus on the dancers can drive the DJ crazy... In any case apart from selecting my music on the spot, i am trying not to use an external sound card in order to pre-listen the music i select. Listening and focusing on the music you are going to play next makes you less focused on the dance floor. I guess everything is a matter of trade offs. This is why i find it important to have strong knowledge of the music and not waste any time in pre-listening.
Have you ever played in a boring night? Have you you understand too late that perhaps the milonga could not give you the right motivation and you could not wait to finish? Do you accept whatever you offer or try to make a selection preferring location and fascinating evening with friends?
Definitely DJing for friends and people you appreciate is the most interesting thing. This is actually the usual setup of a marathon. The difficult part for a dj comes when he is DJing right after a marathon in a milonga with less energy. I try to fight this problem with changing the focus of my performance. I believe that everyone and not only the *good dancers* have the right to listen to good music and to enjoy at the milonga. I try therefore to adapt my style and make the audience of each milonga enjoy. Actually i am trying to be professional here. From the moment i am accepting payment for my performance i am trying to do my best for the organizers, their efforts and the dancers.
How would you define your style? It has evolved over time? And in which direction? What can influence you in an evening, the audience, the dancers, the acoustics of the location, the duration of your performance ...
My style was always focused on balancing the energy and the emotions i generate in the milonga. This was always my main target and i think this is still going to be my focus over the next years. What has changed over time is my aesthetics and my appreciation to different music, orchestras and elements of the music. This is an evolving process that always comes on top of the energy balancing. Regarding the influence, i think apart from the duration of the performance, all of the above point you mention heavily influence me. The biggest pleasure i get from the milonga is the interaction with the people and the satisfaction they get. In order to achieve this i try to open "emotionally" to the people as much as possible. I would say i am becoming sensitive to the environment and i am trying to adopt to the the conditions i face. Other factors that can influence me are the time of the day i am Djing, the temperature, the physical state of the dancers and the music the people danced before i take over.
Do you prefer playing alone or sharing the night with a / colleague. Generally prefer to work alone, or with friends who you feeling? Or, you love the thrill of experimenting with a colleague ever heard until then?
Personally i strongly prefer to DJ on my own. A dj duo which is based on improvisation can easily prove to be a disaster. An exception can be here djs that really know each other's style and that share the same "vision" for the night. The danger in a duo arrangement is that this might and up as a competition or as an "impression" game with a "show off" focus. The choices of a dj though should always aim to people's satisfaction and not to creating impressions. To put it differently: from an energy perspective, the choices of the djs are supposed to influence the dancers and not a fellow dj.
If someone asks you the name of a track you say it to him, perhaps suggesting where the CD is included, or invite him to venture into the trouble of searching?
I usually share my knowledge. Meeting a dancer interested in my music is an honor for me. What i dislike is people asking me questions on my selection without introducing themselves or without saying hello.
Do you like to dance and listen to your colleagues enjoy the selections and styles of others from your performances?
Yes, I do
Do you believe that the art of "musicalizador" is different for geographic areas? Argentina, Northern Europe, Eastern Europe, the Mediterranean ... or is it similar in every countries?
The job is exactly the same: to make people happy. In any case, I think the musicalizador has to be able to adopt to different conditions. Even withing the same geographical area there are milongas with different atmosphere and people with different tastes.
Would you like to have a milonga just for you, furnish it with the appropriate facility to your desires, try to create a wave that satisfies you over to play when you want and create a calendar of events to measure your tastes?
I definitely prefer DJing to organizing events:)
The classic point-blank questions you have to answer, you cannot refuse:
Three orchestras that can not miss in one evening
DiSarli, DiSarli and again DiSarli:)
Your three favourite orchestras, which may also be different from the previous ones.
Disarli, Pugliese, D'arienzo
Suggest a tanda of tango instrumental, a tanda of tango singer, one of vals and milonga.
instrumental: D'Arienzo 1936-1937
-comme il faut
singer: Calo con Beron 1942
-que te importa que te llore
-Corazon, No Le Hagas Caso
Vals: Orquesta Tipia Victor 1938-1940
-Sin rumbo Fijo
Milonga Canaro 1936-1937
-Milonga de Ataño
-Milonga de mis Amores
-Silueta Portena (Maida)
What are the three bands or singers you can not stand?
"not stand" is a strong statement:)
-i dislike the frequent use of accordion in the place of bandoneon
(unfortunately Donato oftern uses this)
-i dislike the happy tangos of Rodriguez with Flores and especially
their "luna part" valses like "Fru Fru"
-i dislike orquestras formed by singers after stopped working with
famous conductors. One example is Rufino
What is the band most underrated by the general public and which is the most overrated?
Underrated i think it is Pugliese. I think Pugliese should be played more often in the milongas
Overrated: i would say Lomuto, especially in the era before 1940
Your top three nights (in your opinion of course ...)
Difficult to say.. i do remember though the best milonga i've ever been to as a dancer, it was in 2009, Sunday night in Brussels festival, with Tommaso Fiorilli as a DJ. I think that night was inspiring for me and for a few more DJ colleagues.
We are less serious: Last night a dj saved my life. The DJ rule is sexy? have you ever had a relationship with some fans and some flirt with your colleagues?
Yes and yes:)