Troilophilia 5 – Naranjo en flor

This is an amazing and beautiful tango. Played by many orchestras, sang by many singers, but to me, none comes close to the orchestra of Anibal Troilo and the voice of Ruiz. Maybe because it was my favourite track of the first tango CD I ever owned, 14 years ago – Café Argentina. It was by listening to this track I got used to my favourite Troilo trademark – the utter perfection of all instruments playing together. This Troilo orchestra was in their peak, the weight of all instruments in the music is like the most complex desert recipe – down to the smallest detail!

The music starts with all instruments together, the double base giving it a deep ground and all instruments folding in like a drop of ink spreading in water. And then Ruiz with his soft voice kicks in.

Era mas blanda que el agua, 
que el agua blanda, 
era mas fresca que el rio, 
naranjo en floor… 
Y en esa calle de estio, 
calle perdida, 
dejo un pedazo de vida 
y se marcho…

Softer than water, fresher than a river,  like an orange blossom, that’s what she was. And in a summer day she walked away leaving behind a piece of life…

Primero hay que saber sufrir,
despues amar, despues partir
y al fin andar sin pensamiento…
Perfume de naranjo en flor,
promesas vanas de un amor
que se escaparon en el viento…

First you have to suffer, then love and then leave and walk without thinking. This is the cycle of a love who walked away, and possibly one of the most striking verses of the universe of tango. And whilst he thinks, the scent of orange blossom in the street reminds him of the empty love promises that, like the orange blossom scent, vanish in the wind…

Despues, que importa el despues
Toda mi vida es el ayer
que me detiene en el pasado,
eterna y vieja juventud
que me ha dejado acobardado
como un pajaro sin luz.

After, what does the afterwads matter when all his life is the memories of yesterday that incarcerate him in the past. All his life was spent loving this woman and now he feels coward to face life, like a bird in the dark.

This is probably one of Troilo’s tangos where the instruments take very little prominence. There is a little Troilo solo at 2:10, which is given more relevance as the double base is now played with the fingers rather than bow.

The lyrics were quite different from those used in tango tracks. The orange blossom is the scent of a lost love, unlike the usual backgrounds of the street corner, the park bench, the street light or the compadrito…

Other orchestras, from Laurenz to Bajofondo have played this track but I think none comes close to Troilo’s. Goyeneche did a very very popular version with Stampone’s orchestra and another with Piazzolla but I think that it is geared to showcase his voice and less suited for the milonga…

Judge it by yourself and feel the orange blossom scent in the air…


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