La cumparsita

The foreign couple at the next table danced several tandas at Lo de Celia and were preparing to leave early.  As they passed behind me, I heard him say, La cumparsita.  I responded to myself, El Choclo.   

Those acquainted with tradition know that every milonga ends with La cumparsita, so it’s never played during a tanda.  During our morning conversation, I asked Alito how long and why the last tango is always La cumparsita.  Alito said that every tango orchestra recorded La cumparsita, because it was nationally famous.  We know the milonga is over when we hear La cumparsita.  It’s the anthem of the milongas.

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