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February 16, 2005

Reviews of Borges

Borges - Reviews

A collection of reviews of Borges's works and of works about Borges.

Posted by joegrohens at 01:14 AM | Comments (0)

February 15, 2005

Play Count

For what it's worth: The most played tracks in my iTunes.

    Name • Artist
  1. Real Rock • Sound Dimension
  2. Nueve Puntos • Carlos Di Sarli
  3. A La Gran Muñeca • Carlos Di Sarli
  4. Champagne Tango • Carlos Di Sarli
  5. Yo soy de Parque Patricios • D'Agostino / Vargas
  6. El Flete • D'Arienzo
  7. Sentimientos • Jaime Wilensky
  8. Grazing in the Grass • Hugh Masekela
  9. GOLGOTA • Rodolfo Biagi
  10. Hotel Victoria • D'Agostino / Vargas
  11. Pénsalo Bien • D'Arienzo, Juan
  12. Una Emocion • Tanturi Campos
  13. Track 16 • Enrique Rodrigues
  14. Prelude • Metier
  15. La Cumparsita • Miguel Villasboas
  16. cumparsita • DI SARLI
  17. tuba something • Tuba Tango
  18. Cafe Domingues • D'Agostino / Vargas
  19. El Morochita • Enrique Rodrigues
  20. Corazon de oro • QUINTETO PIRINCHO (Vals)
  21. El Tango • Hi Perspective
  22. La cumparsita • Florindo Sassone
  23. Chega de Saudade • João Gilberto
  24. Vida Mia • Osvaldo Fresedo
  25. Tequila • Wes Montgomery
  26. Track 06 • Enrique Rodrigues
  27. Bailongo De Los Domingos • Tanturi
  28. Del pasado • ALFREDO DE ANGELIS (Milonga)
  29. Mi corazón • Campo
  30. Don Juan • Carlos Di Sarli
  31. Zorzal • Carlos Di Sarli
  32. El Internado • La Solistas De D'Arienzo
  33. Prisionero • Tanturi-Campos
  34. Voulez•Vous? • Arling & Cameron
  35. Festejando • Color Tango
  36. Cornetín • DI SARLI w Rufino, Florio, et al
  37. Track 14 • Tuba Tango
  38. Marisabel •
  39. Adios Arrabal • D'Agostino / Vargas
  40. Bim Bom • João Gilberto
  41. La Mariposa • Color Tango
  42. Corazón • DI SARLI w Rufino, Florio, et al
  43. Track 13 • Tuba Tango
  44. Forma • Supervielle
  45. Yo Soy de San Telmo • Carlos Di Sarli
  46. Reliquias portenas • FRANCISCO CANARO (MILONGA)
  47. Confianzas • Gotan Project
  48. Desafinado • João Gilberto
  49. Sonar y nada mas • ALFRED DE ANGELIS (VALS)•
  50. Champagne Tango • Carlos Sarli
  51. La Viruta • D'Arienzo
  52. Montevideo • Miguel Villasboas
  53. A Evaristo Carriego• Pugliese
  54. The Look of Love • Ron Isley
  55. Nostalgias•Lomuto
  56. Dindi • Astrud Gilberto

Much of this is due to my playing through my laptop for dances and practices. I cannot account for why I seem to have played "The Look of Love" as often as "A Evaristo Carriego", but there you go. (Ron Isley is pretty good, though.) I'll try to do this again in several months and see what has changed. Oh... by the way, I have recently used "Real Rock" and "Grazing in the Grass" as cortinas, which exaggerates their frequency, as I only play 20 seconds or so.

And... I apologize for the inconsistent entry of song titles and artist names. I'll clean that up someday.

Posted by joegrohens at 10:29 PM | Comments (0)

February 07, 2005

Recommended lodging in Buenos Aires


El Sol de San Telmo

This tango hostel is a good place to stay for tango tourists. Carlota and I stayed here.

The manager, Fabrizio, is friendly, speaks excellent English, and is fully immersed in the tango world so he can tell you what is going on each night, and give his recommendations.

Posted by joegrohens at 03:35 PM | Comments (0)

Origins of Tango (Borges)

Tobias's blog quotes an excerpt from Borges.

Each of the meticulous researchers Vincente Rossi, Carlos Vega and Carlos Muzzio Sáenz Peña explains the origins of tango differently. I hereby agree not only with all their findings, but with each and every other finding as well. According to the regularly propagated cinema version, tango was born in the suburbs, in the tenements (usually in the Riachuelo delta zone because this quarter is so photogenic for the cinema) and was at first rejected by the patriciate. Not to be outdone by Paris, however, it opened its doors around 1910 to an interesting bunch of suburbians. Although this fairy tale of the "pauper prince" has been dubbed unquestionably true in the meantime, none of my memories (I just turned fifty) back it up by any means. Nor do any of the inquiries I have made.

Read the rest on Tobias Ph. E. Romer: Origins of Tango

(As the previous link seems now defunct, I have copied the rest of Borges's text below (via Google cache))

Each of the meticulous researchers Vincente Rossi, Carlos Vega and Carlos Muzzio Sáenz Peña explains the origins of tango differently. I hereby agree not only with all their findings, but with each and every other finding as well. According to the regularly propagated cinema version, tango was born in the suburbs, in the tenements (usually in the Riachuelo delta zone because this quarter is so photogenic for the cinema) and was at first rejected by the patriciate. Not to be outdone by Paris, however, it opened its doors around 1910 to an interesting bunch of suburbians. Although this fairy tale of the "pauper prince" has been dubbed unquestionably true in the meantime, none of my memories (I just turned fifty) back it up by any means. Nor do any of the inquiries I have made.

I have discussed this matter with José Saborido, the author of Filicia and La morocha, with Ernesto Poncio, who wrote Don Juan, with the brothers of Vicente Greco, the author of La viruta and La tablada, with Nicolas Paredes, one-time Caudillo in Palermo, and with a Gaucho singer friend of his. I simply let them talk, and took good care not to ask any questions presuming any particular answers. When they were asked about the origins of tango, they gave widely varying replies both with regard to topography and geography: Saborido (who comes from Uruguay) relocated the cradle of tango in Montevideo; Poncio (born in the Retiro quarter) voted for his own part of Buenos Aires; the south city dwellers laid claim to the Calle Chile; and those from the north were certain that tango first emerged among the prostitutes in Calle del Templo or Calle Junín.

Despite all these different versions – which could doubtless be extended by asking people from La Plata or Rosario – my advisors all agree on one important point: tango started in the brothels. (And they also agree when: not much before 1880 or after 1890). This is confirmed by the cost of the musical instruments first used: piano, flute, violin, and later bandoneon. Accordingly, tango could not have originated in the outer suburbs because there they made do with six guitar strings. And there is plenty of other evidence as well: the lascivious dance figures, the clearly suggestive titles in many cases (El choclo [the corn cob], El fierrazo [the fire poker]), plus what I observed first as a child in Palermo and some years later in La Chacarita and Boedo: men dancing together at the street corners because their women refused to take part in anything so slatternly. Evaristo Cariego described this very well in his "Heretic Masses":


Out on the streets, the good people pour out
Their friendliest obscenities,
When to the tango rhythm La morocha
Appear two orilleros with lithe and lissom cortes.

Elsewhere Carriego describes with an excess of oppressive details a wretchedly poor wedding feast where two roisterers have to quieten down the bridegroom, whose brother is in jail. But despite all the suspicion and mistrust, rancour and mean jokes:

The bride's uncle, who thinks
he'd better make sure the dancing
stays clean, insists, almost offended,
that cortes are not even allowed as a joke...
"Modesty aside, they'd better
not try that... we'll see indeed.
We are poor, admittedly:
but whatever you do, do it with decency."
This brusque and severe man, whom we can picture clearly from the two verses, illustrated very well the people's first reaction to tango – as a "brothel snake" in Leopoldo Lugones' laconic words. After being found less offensive and thus more socially acceptable in Paris, it took many years for tango to penetrate the tenements in the northern part of the city – and for all I know it may not have succeeded even now. Formerly, tango was orgiastic devilry, and now it is a way of walking.

[Jorge Luis Borges, quoted from the text collection Kabbala and Tango, Fischer Taschenbuchverlag 1991]

Posted by joegrohens at 03:20 AM