LATE BREAKING NEWS : Pablo Ziegler's BAJO CERO is the winner at the 2005 Latin Grammy Awards, in the Tango Category!
After touring with this formation, piano, guitar and bandoneon as a guest, Quique and I finally said to ourselves, “we have to record this!” …and so we did. We made the arrangement with Klaus’ studio in Bonn, Germany, and went there in April 2002, just after we finished our last tour. I had composed new songs, and arranged others.
About the new ones, I can say that the milonga “La Rayuela” is one of the songs we enjoyed the most when playing it live. It is arranged very simply, and with large spaces for improvisation. “La Milonga del Adios” is a southern milonga, perhaps more folk than tango in character, based on a phrase in the bass which recalls and quotes from the “Farewell Waltz” by F. Chopin. “Bajo Cero” is a more complex tune, with a structure in three parts which speaks (perhaps through the harmony in its composition) of a feeling of profound desolation which I believe all Argentinians have felt after the economic and social disaster that occurred in our beloved country in these past years.
“La Fundicion” is a composition I started a long time ago which I needed to finish quickly (a good pretext!) so that it could be recorded for this CD. Maybe this song has the most tango flavor, with a lot of Pugliese’s rhythmic style, and it also has lots of room for tango improvisation. “Planufer Milonga” is Sinesi’s composition, with a large structure of several parts. Its central section, like some elaborate mirrors, is really fascinating harmonically, with a strong Milonga feel, and with some improvisation in the (Afro – Uruguayan) Candombe rhythm which takes us into the final recapitulation of the theme.
It was also fun to record “Chin Chin”, a song written by Astor Piazzolla in the eighth decade of his life, and dedicated to the piano, with a very interesting final “coda” where Astor had only indicated “improvise” … and that’s exactly what we did. Then, one of Astor’s classics “Fuga y Misterio”, the most complex fugue ever written by him, with 12 statements of each theme in the exposition, and with a very inspired final melody. This song is a part of his tango opera “Maria de Buenos Aires”.
Finally, with a minimum of arrangements and lots of improvisation, we recorded three traditional tangos for the piano and guitar duo, “Flor de Lino”, “Yuyo Verde”, and “Los Mareados”. We enjoyed each of these tunes, as we hope you will as well.
Pablo Ziegler, the internationally acclaimed Argentinian pianist, composer and band leader, has been described as the most important artist of the Tango Nuevo, and as the great Astor Piazzolla's legitimate successor. A classically trained pianist and a veteran of the vibrant Buenos Aires jazz scene, Ziegler has taken Tango, South America’s most sultry and passionate music, into new directions. By using improvisational elements, Ziegler enriches the Tango Nuevo legacy, and further explores the common ground between Tango and jazz. From 1978 to 1989, Ziegler worked continuously with Astor Piazzolla and contributed substantially to his enormous success.
In the 1990’s, Ziegler founded his own “Quintet for New Tango”, to enthusiastic acclaim of audiences and critics worldwide. Recordings and concerts followed, together with (among others) Paquito D’Rivera, Joe Lovano, Milva, Gary Burton and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra of London. He received awards for his achievements as composer in New Orleans, New York and Buenos Aires.
Quique Sinesi, born in Buenos Aires, began his musical career as the guitarist of the bandonion player Dino Saluzzi, and later as member of the Pablo Ziegler Quintet. The legenday Jazz guitarist Jim Hall was greatly impressed by Quique: "One of the many joys of my recent visit to Buenos Aires was meeting and hearing Quique Sinesi. He became -instantly- one of my very favorite guitarists!"
The young bandoneon virtuoso Walter Castro has played with many of the major Argentinian Tango formations, including Sexteto Sur, and Osvaldo Pugliese´s and Horacio Salgan’s orchestras. In 1995, he joined Pablo Ziegler´s “Quintet for New Tango". Walter Castro plays a dynamic and vivid bandoneon style which expresses Tango’s sorrow and melancholy, but also its sensuousness and joy.
Recorded and mixed at Hansehaus Studios, Bonn, Germany, by Klaus Genuit. Mastered at Sterling Sound, New York, by Dominick Maita. Photos: Andree Moehling. Package design: 3+Co. www.threeandco.com Executive producer: Joachim Becker
Some press quotes on “Bajo Cero”:
Pablo Ziegler has been described at the successor to the phenomenal Astor Piazzolla. Bajo Cero leaves little doubt of his remarkable contribution to Tango Nuevo. The music is smart with just enough of a jazz flair to appeal to tango fans. The CD walks the listener through the passion and melancholy of the Argentinian soul.
On Bajo Cero, the internationally renowned pianist Pablo Ziegler is featured in a highly virtuosic duet setting with guitarist Quique Sinesi. The respected veteran of the vibrant Buenos Aires jazz scene and former member of Astor Piazzolla’s highly regarded ensembles also invited Walter Castro to play the bandoneon and round out this great musical program of sultry tango and jazz improvisations. Among the beautiful milongas included on this program are "La Rayuela," "Milonga del Adios," and "Planufer Milonga." These are intelligent reflections of the South American dance songs that remain very popular in the southern part of the continent. To vary the song selection, Ziegler includes two of Astor Piazzolla’s rarely recorded compositions: "Chin Chin," a recording dedicated to the piano, and "Fuga y Misterio," one of the most complex fugues ever composed by Piazzolla. "Bajo Cero" is but one of the four great originals penned by Ziegler. It is a standout because of its three-part structure and emotional understatements. As with previous efforts as a pianist, composer, and bandleader on his 1990s releases, Pablo Ziegler is in great form and furthers the tango nuevo movement to a new level of interest.
All Music Guide
”Nuevo Tango” is what Argentinean pianist Pablo Ziegler calls his music. On Bajo Cero, Ziegler debuts his newly formed Nuevo Tango Duo consisting of himself on piano and Quique Sinesi on guitar. He supplements the duo with virtuoso bandoneon player Walter Castro. The resulting trio makes some of the most entertaining and provocative music in recent memory. In addition to the newer Ziegler and Sinesi compositions that the Duo has been playing recently, they honor Piazzolla with two of his own: “Chin Chin,” and ”Fuga Y Misterio” grace this recording like a fine compliment, deepening the dark and humid beauty of this music.
Ziegler’s compositions trend toward the virtuosic. “La Rayuela” and the title piece are complex as red wine and heady as fine port. His empathic relationship with Sinesi is a plus, providing the music with the depth necessary to sustain itself, almost like a breeze. Walter Castro shows up as the smile on the face of this lilting music. ZOHO continues its documentation of Latin Music with this very fine Bajo Cero.
All About Jazz
Pablo Ziegler bookings : Bernstein Artists, Inc., Brooklyn, New York
Tel: 718-623-1214 BernsArts@aol.com www.bernsarts.com