Tango

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  • Tango
    • It has roots in Europe and Africa
      • The first tangos appeared in the 1850s in Argentina and Uruguay
        • Argentina had lots of immigrants from different European countries, and lots of Africans were brought over in slavery. Tango is a mix of music from all these cultures
          • Immigrants from Italy, Spain and Eastern Europe had an influence of Latin-American music. Tango melodies often have an Italian origin
    • Influences
      • Candombe was a style of music created by the Afro-Uruguayan community in Montevideo. The rhythms were brought over by African slaves and were used in the tango
    • It was first performed in the bars and brothels in the port areas of Buenos Aires in Argentina and Montevideo in Uruguay
      • It moved into cabarets and dance halls
    • Instruments
      • Early tango orchestras included the flute, violin and guitar, but they were also played on just the piano
        • The double bass, the bandoneon (a type of accordion made in Germany) and percussion instruments were soon added
      • Singers accompanying themselves on on guitar as well as bras bands were playing tangos
      • A typical lineup is a sextet of 2 bandoneons,2 violins, a piano and a double bass
    • In the 1950s, orchestras started performing tangos without dancers in concert halls
      • After the 1950s, tango fell out of popularity. The large orchestras disappeared when the dance and concert halls fell into decline
        • Currently, small tango groups of 3-6 musicians are most common in Argentina, where they play in smaller venues
    • Varieties
      • The tango song was seen in the Golden Age in the 1920s-30s
      • Ballroom tango developed as a dance for competitions in Europe and the US
        • It is based on the Argentine tango, which is more improvised and less competitive than the ballroom tango
      • Tango Nuevo combines elements of tango, classical and jazz. It used complex rhythms and harmonies that dancers weren't used to, and became music to listen to instead
      • Tango rock replaced the bandoneon and the double basswith a rock band rhythm sectionelectric guitars and keyboards. It has also moved into mainstream jazz, with some groups using saxophones and clarinets
      • Electro tango uses sampling mixed with traditional tango
    • The dance is provocative yet controlled, which is reflected in the music through beautiful melodies and strong rhythmic energy
    • The music
      • The main melody uses a slow rhythmic pace with triplets and syncopation. Staccato notes give the music precision
      • Harmonies are simple, almost always in a minor key, and are based on the dominant and tonic chords

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