Superstition in Tango

Discussion in 'Tango Argentino' started by opendoor, Aug 5, 2008.

  1. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    Yesterday in a small milonga, they played Adios Muchachos. No one cared about it. I break off dancing and told the woman that this was a non-danceable tango. She showed no understanding for this custom, at all. Then she asked a bit angry a man who stood beside the dance floor why he wasn´t dancing to this piece. He shrugged his shoulder and then the woman went away.

    What is your experience?
  2. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    I'm an atheist. I don't have faith--not in religion/deities, not in superstitions. If there's music, and I can find a leader, I'm dancing. End of story. To each their own.
  3. kieronneedscake

    kieronneedscake New Member

    If you refer to Gardel's Adios Muchachos, the recording I have here is pretty much undanceable. I would not leap to my feet upon hearing it, and I would probably excuse myself from the floor if it came on.

    This is a matter of taste for me, danceable tango music, rather than anything to do with song content or any superstitions, or indeed being told not to dance to something because "It isn't tango".
  4. bordertangoman

    bordertangoman Well-Known Member

    I fell the same about Adios Nonino; its a requiem written by Piazzolla for his father.

    But I guess not many people know that.

    Not superstitious though.
  5. Angel HI

    Angel HI Well-Known Member

    Many of these superstitions have significance in Argentina. My feeling...leave them there. If one is not in BsAs, or such, then it just seems pretentious.
  6. piimapoika

    piimapoika Member

    Hee is an episode from "Tango is my Passion":

    The second tango was another foreign composition, Julio Sanders’ Adios Muchachos. It is in major key. I don’t like tangos in major key, but I didn’t want to leave the floor in the middle of everything. I didn’t like the words either, which tell of a man’s farewell to his friends: he is going to prison because he has killed his wife’s lover. “Farewell!” Brought the song to a climax of bad taste. Murder is not my image of tango.
  7. newbie

    newbie Active Member

    It's more because of the story than because of the danceability level of the piece. The DJ is to blame here. But if he plays it, then you can dance it.
  8. Heather2007

    Heather2007 New Member

    Superstition? That was Cosmic obeying on a grand scale my friend. You stop dancing with your partner before the end of a track called Adios Muchachos? Huns, she will then do exactly that. Ha, ha, ha.
  9. calandra

    calandra New Member

    I find this all quite strange:
    (1) Much of the music popularised by Gardel may be considered 'undanceable' but he is an absolute classic in the genre, and the idea that
    a modern tango dancer would turn up their nose at the music or the lyrics of this song, which is a classic in Latin America (many latin americans outside of Argentina would also know this song) is quite frankly... well, I wouldn't like to say...
    (2) I don't know what version of Adios Muchachos was played, but the Canaro version is IMO perfectly 'danceable' - yes, it is in a major key - sorry.
    (3) It seems quite odd chosing what music you like or will dance to based on the lyrics - especially if it's tango music - which is usually about some flavour of unpleasant topic. So this one's about murder, and others are about lost love, unfaithful women, loss of home/country/friendship/ etc. If you want 'happy lyrics' either choose a different form of dance, listen to early Beatles, or else, try to 'unlearn your spanish'.
  10. Joe

    Joe Well-Known Member

    Come on, there are all kinds of tangos with all sorts of stories. Is a story about a degenerate gambler your image of tango?
  11. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    Hi Heather, thanks for the term of endearment :)

    - Peace -
  12. calandra

    calandra New Member

    If your speaking about Por una Cabeza which is one of the first Gardel tango songs I ever heard, then yes - that did contribute to shaping my image of tango - and I think it's a gorgeous song just like I also like Adios Muchachos. I'd much rather have my vision of tango shaped by a beautiful song about a distasteful topic than by the odd horrible evening I had at certain milongas, or dancing with people with no appreciation or feel for the music. The MUSIC is the main reason I am drawn to tango, lyrics and all - happy or sad.

    Of course there are happy lyrics in tango, but I think it's safe to say that the majority are not, for various cultural reasons, as set out in the quite intelligent discourse on the subject of tango lyrics in Masculinities: Football, Polo and the Tango in Argentina by Eduardo P. Archetti, and elsewhere.
  13. Me

    Me New Member

    Bold, italics, and underline are all mine... YES.

    The "three dances" also irritates me. No, I'm not breaking it off because I don't like your dancing. Maybe I'm tired. Maybe I just really need to go to the ladies room. Maybe I've wanted a vals all night with my favorite partner, missed him all of the time, it is nearing the end of the milonga and he is within arms reach and has also broken away from his current partner to reach for me, because he knows if he doesn't I will sulk bigtime... oh did that last example sound too truthful? [​IMG]
  14. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    Tango has so much to do with convention, customs, tradition, habits top down to the tiptoes. (Tiptoes turned inwards are my problem, sometimes) So, isn´t there room for irrational customs? My first TA teacher, an uruguayian, told me that one should listen to Adios Muchachos devoutly and should not dance. And he told me too, "Leave women behind that will not understand this". So, to my mind, if one dips into this culture one should accept all the irrational customs, as well.

    Greetings
  15. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    Just found this post at Cyber-Tango.com
  16. Me

    Me New Member

    I was thinking along the lines of superstition, rather than being educated about a culture.

    I don't think I've had a single educated person throw Argentine tradition at me at an American milonga. (Sorry if that sounds harsh.) I always get the sense that the person googled "milonga" the night before and is off on a mission to impress people.
  17. opendoor

    opendoor Well-Known Member

    Believe me I trust in your opion and experience: so, ok, in other words, as I treated the woman (s.a.) was smart-alecky.
  18. Me

    Me New Member

    I am sorry if it came across that way! I did not mean to say that, at all. :(

    Please feel free to use this smile when replying to me: :bkick:
  19. Angel HI

    Angel HI Well-Known Member

    I was also told that Piazzola was listening music, and to never dance to it. To which I say a resounding "BS"! I agree about accepting the customs of a culture, but draw the line when it comes to whims and social norms. Thsi is not so much culture as it is custom, which, as you said, could be really irrational, especially when performed outside of the home culture. If I were in BsAs, perhaps I would respect the idea, and act accordingly. Yet, I see no reason why I need to do that, say, here in the US where it means nothing.
  20. Heather2007

    Heather2007 New Member

    Quite!! Can you, at a milonga, tell/see/feel the difference between those that come armed with a Handbook and dance their tango like something akin to a military operation and those that just want to get down and get widdit? I can.

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