Friday, 12 August 2011

Monday, cont.

I've not been to Gricel before. Everyone looks assured and enthusiastic and well practiced: it's how people dance when they dance a lot. Good ordinary salon, ordinary people, not necessarily expert dancers, enjoying themselves, and very refreshing to watch. The music in general has that strong feel of Buenos Aires tango, two tandas of Tanturi with those wild violins within an hour or so, that kind of sound. & the place, a bit run down, functional but not in the least pretty. A good floor, pine apparently, with pronounced grain but very smooth and well-polished, which looks kind of a homely. Not too crowded, comfortable dancing. Very much a feeling of community.

& on to Salon Canning, late, to meet Silvia. Great music in the cab, clearly tango but recent and a live concert; the tradition renews itself. 'Great music', I say to the driver. 'Si! La dos por quatro! Tango!', he says; the great BsAs tango station. As I get out a news break comes up and I hear a list of English place names: Tottenham, Peckham, Camden, Manchester. An update on the riots in England.

I'd not met Silvia since Tete died; glad to find her as warm and lively as ever. We dance a tanda. I've only danced socially with her once, in Paris, and it's impossible here to forget Tete. Monday is her DJ night, and I'm amazed as ever at her range of music, both in tango and in the cortinas, which are often unexpected and unusual and yet fit effortlessly, creating an excellent 'aural space' between tandas.

10 comments:

Chris said...

"'Si! La dos por quatro! Tango!', he says; the great BsAs tango station.

Or perhaps he was referring just to the music itself. "La dos por quatro" is more widely used to refer to the musical genre of tango than specifically the main BA radio station that plays it.

It is a metonym. It translates to "The two for four", being originally the time signature in which tango was written and now colloquially the quadruple musical metre that distinguishes tango from milonga, vals, zamba etc.

Simba said...

Chris, wouldn't that rather be el dos por quatro referring to the tango (m), not the radio (f)?

jantango said...

It's "La dos por cuatro," not la dos por quatro. The radio station uses LA dos por cuatro.

In written text:
un dos por cuatro
al dos por cuatro
Esa es la sensacion que le produce bailar el dos por cuatro.

That's not just a good pine floor in Gricel. It's a very old one that's given loving care. Read about the history on the Gricel site www.clubgriceltango.com.ar
Hector Chidichimo is the owner and dislikes Tanturi recordings. Years ago when Dany Borelli was his resident DJ, he was not allowed to play Tanturi during Hector's weekend milongas. Other DJs get to do what they want during other milongas there.

Chris said...

Simba, as the metonym, they are interchangeable.

Tangocommuter said...

The radio actually calls itself 'La2x4', which is how I should have written it. This blog has long been in need of a dedicated team of legal and linguistic experts to ensure that errors like this don't creep in.

Chris said...

"Hector Chidichimo is the owner and dislikes Tanturi recordings. Years ago when Dany Borelli was his resident DJ, he was not allowed to play Tanturi during Hector's weekend milongas."

That's interesting. And comforting to this DJ who's been publically berated for playing too little Tanturi. :)

Or is that Tanturri? :)

At Gricel, the DJ I liked most was Carlos Rey. I hope he's still playing there.

Tangocommuter said...

On reflection, two tandas of Tanturi within an hour or so doesn't sound probable: one for sure, but maybe not two. Well, I was fresh off the plane. Maybe DJs here emphasise the strong side of tango for part of the evening. That's how it seemed.

& the Gricel floor is beautiful. Interesting how all the dance places have quite different floors.

Simba said...

Sorry about staying OT TC, hope it doesn't ruin your time down there ;-)

Funny how both TC, Chris and I made the same mistake with the Italian contamination of cuatro :-)

I don't see how "dos por cuatro" being a metonym has anything to do with determining the gender. Please explain.

Several Spanish words have different meanings depending on the gender (radio is actually an example of this), which can cause some confusion for foreigners like myself.

I do believe "el dos por cuatro" refers unambiguously to the tango while as TC says "La 2x4" is the name of the radio station.

I always assumed the gender followed from the gender of "tango" (m) or maybe from the implicit "ritmo" (m), while the radio station has its gender from the implicit "radio" (f). I looked it up in my Spanish/Lunfardo dictionaries, but neither had an entry for "dos por cuatro".

Chris said...

"I always assumed the gender followed from the gender of "tango" (m)"

Despite that "tango" is only implied? I'd assumed the gender comes from the explicit number, and hence can be m or (less usually) f.

Anyway having checked with some experts, I am told that it, for tango, should be only "el dos por cuatro" not "las..." , so I stand corrected - thanks Simba.

Chris said...

"Anyway having checked with some experts..."

Oops, and I belatedly spot Janis' comment above where she says they same.