Speaking Tango

SSC1649 2022-02-25

Track List

Amame online - 4:48
Estas desorientado - 4:08
Que carajo - 4:36
Señora Doña Igualdad - 4:59
En lo mas profundo de Ella - 4:34
Boca con boca - 5:37
Solo con un beso - 4:19
No son los muertos - 2:54
Speaking Tango - 5:31
Los chicos de mi barrio - 5:34
Que lo parió! - 4:47


MInino Garay - percussion
Pipi Piazzola - drums
Manu Codjia - guitarra
Jean Marie Ecay - guitar
Leo Genevese - piano , keyboards
Alex Pandev - voice
Andre Ceccarelli - drums
Christophe Wallemme - bass
Flavio Romero - bass
Hernan Jacinto - piano
Melingo - voice
David Linx - voice
Magic Malik - flute, voice

The practice of pairing music with poetry has a long history. Setting verse to music has become a way to amplify the emotional impact of the writers’ words. Argentinean percussionist and composer Minino Garay created a recording, Speaking Tango, that uses poetry to find the essence of the Argentinean tango in contemporary music, something that has been attempted in the genre at least since poet Horacio Ferrer collaborated with Astor Piazzolla.

Garay’s musical path has been a broad one. The jazz world has been his home for decades, but the percussionist also spent years perfecting his craft with Argentinean legends, like Mercedes Sosa and Jairo. Having lived 30 years in France, Garay expanded his musical interests into Brazilian and African music, recording with Hermeto Pascoal, Toumani Diabaté, Cheik Tidiane Seck, and Richard Bona along the way. These diverse musical interests inform the music that Garay creates.

Garay’s mother, Nury Taborda, a Córdoba based writer and teacher emphasized the importance of literature and poetry to him. Garay has continually returned to the written word for inspiration and continues to collaborate with Taborda in his music. He has also developed relationships with Argentinean poets Mutty Torezani and Adriana Cattanio. In 2000, Garay met Brooklyn born poet Dana Bryant, who introduced him to the work of The Last Poets, a highly influential African American poet collective that preached Black nationalism beginning in the late 1960s. Garay’s interest in dynamic poetry set to music continued to grow and manifest in his own creations.

The concept of Speaking Tango is to take the texts of old tango songs and adapt them to other types of music. For the past twenty years, Garay has worked alongside a number of composers and poets to create an amalgamation of music, tango lyrics, and original poetry, especially with Lalo Zanelli, whose collaboration was essential to the project. The outcome can be heard on Garay’s new album.

For the recording, Garay split the performances between two ensembles: one Argentinean and one French. Pianist Hernán Jacinto lends his expert touch to the record. Garay and Jacinto were joined in Buenos Aires by drummer Pipi Piazzolla and bassist Flavio Romero. The Parisian group included drummer Andre Ceccarelli, bassist Christophe Wallemme, and guitarist Manu Codjia. A handful of impressive guests amplify the music’s message throughout.

The wide-ranging texts cover a variety of topics, including politics, eroticism, and the realities of the world. The most prominent themes are the importance of being loved and the passage of time and its effects on the mind and body.