Music has been a vital and essential part of my life for several decades, ever since I began guitar lesson at ten years of age. I agree very much with Nietzsche:
“Without music, life would be a mistake.”
― Friedrich Nietzsche, Twilight of the Idols
When I first heard tango music, about twenty years ago, it was the emotional music of Piazzolla. I played jazz guitar and thought Piazzolla had some nice “jazzy” sounds so I learned a few of his pieces. That was all I knew about tango and never pursued it further.
I owe my love of “Golden Age” tango music and the dance to my wife. As a birthday present she signed us up for a series of tango lessons at a local dance “school”. I wasn’t very keen on the idea, but of course I went to the class. I was expecting Piazzolla or some sensuous music and showy dance moves, like most people who have only seen so called tango in movies or on TV would expect. Looking back, the classes were terrible; a hodge podge of old and new music, from old scratchy stuff to electronic synthesized noise. And dancing was a bunch of fixed steps to be repeated ad infinitum. But at least they were showy. (I mean, really, ganchos and boleos after a couple of classes!). We quickly found better teachers.
The good news is, without those initial classes I would never have been exposed to the classic Golden Age music. Of all the music I heard during those classes it got my attention. It had heart. It was real. I started researching tango music, listening to everything I could get my hands on and studying the scores, when available. I’ve been doing that for quite a few years now. The blog is my way of sharing what I’ve learned about the music and passing it along.
By the way, I have a musicology degree. I’ve studied everything from Gregorian Chant to Schoenberg, jazz and tango. I outlined my analytical approach, here.