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Last Updated: Wednesday, 31 December, 2003, 05:03 GMT
Moving stories: Eduardo Makaroff
BBC World Service's The World Today programme is asking migrants who have been successful in their adopted countries how they got to the top of their field.

Musician, composer and producer Eduardo Makaroff comes from the birthplace of tango - the Argentinian capital, Buenos Aires. He moved to Paris where he met up with two DJs, and they collaborated on what they considered to be short project. But the single they produced was so popular that the one-off Gotan Project expanded into a permanent group and a first album.

I lived in Argentina for 36 years doing a lot of things around music, TV programmes, radio programmes and television for children.

The Gotan Project (image: Gotan Project website)
The Gotan Project: From one-off to permanent group
I went to live in Paris 14 years ago. I went there mainly as a tango artist, but also as a producer. I developed my career basically with tango.

With the Gotan Project, we make tango music from my hometown Buenos Aires meet with electronic music from everywhere. It's amazing that it works.

You know, Paris is the second capital of tango music.

Historically it's in Paris where tango became very important and accepted by everyone in the world and where tango can develop because a lot of composers, musicians, singers, a lot of writers and dancers from Buenos Aires went to Paris to develop and to create.

So Carlos Gardel made his first film in Paris. Piazzolla lived in Paris for many years.

My case is quite a normal case of a tango musician from Buenos Aires who went to Paris to continue his career. Because I have two little children who were born there four and two years ago, I can say that my home now is in Paris - in the Boulevard St Germain.

Of course I lost something by moving from Argentina to Paris, I lost a lot of things.

But it was a choice. We left a lot of beautiful things behind in Argentina.

The Europeans - maybe they don't have so much "calor humano", you know - human warmth. I left my family, a lot of friends.

But I'm very happy to be in Paris and not in Argentina now because of all the good things we have here. Argentina is now a disaster.

I think that the fusion of different strands of music I put together with the Gotan Project proves that we can do a lot of new things in our music. Sometimes in Paris you are more open-minded.

But in Argentina there is also a lot of creativity. So it's a bit of a ping-pong. I have a lot of Argentinian musicians and friends who were living in Paris before me.

So, we go and we come back.

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Eduardo Makaroff
" I'm very happy to be in Paris and not in Argentina now because of all the good things we have here"



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