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Tangos del Arco Bajo & Canarios

Tangos del Arco Bajo (tangos). Composed and performed by Vicente Amigo.

According to musicologists (e.g., Faustino Nuñez, Guillermo Castro, etc.) the flamenco tango has its rhythmic origins most likely in west Africa. Research points to early 18th century Santiago de Cuba as the probable starting point for variations of the original west African rhythm that lead to the creation of an Afro-Cuban style of music called the "tango Congo." This rhythm spread quickly throughout the Americans and Europe and in Cádiz, Spain, musicians varied this rhythm in the early 1900s to create the pre-flamenco tanguillos. (You may remember a Zapateado video I posted recently where I mention this rhythm). The tanguillo was then "flamenco-ized" into the tientos which was later varied to create the flamenco tangos. Here is an incredible instrumental version by Vicente Amigo.


Canarios. Composed by Gaspar Sanz (1640-1710) and performed by John Williams.

The canarios was a popular dance from 16th-17th century Europe that has its origins in the folkloric dances from the Canary Islands (Spain). Composer Gaspar Sanz wrote this piece for the Baroque guitar which had 5 pairs of strings -- paired in unisons during Sanz' time. The original piece was written in TAB for Baroque guitar and can be found in Sanz' method book titled “Instrucción de Música Sobre la Guitarra Epsañola.” It has since been arranged and edited for the modern 6-string classical guitar with the most notable edition by Emilio Pujol. Canarios is considered a standard in the classical guitar repertoire. Here, John Williams plays Pujol's arrangement (with as little effort as humanly possible)


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