88 keys…



Argentine Tango variations“How many keys are there?”
“And there are chords, right? How many chords are there?”
“Well…” He counted… “More or less 12 per key.”
“So that’s about 1000 sounds it can make? And then if you play them in different speeds and combinations—”
“And moods, and using the pedals.”

What do Argentine Tango variations have to do with a piano?

I made a rough estimate of the number of discrete tango moves. There are 25 movements in the tango lexicon, each with various numbers of variations (there are 48 sacadas, and far more ganchos).

Different dynamics of motion would correspond to the chords.

So we get to 1000 pretty easily.
That means we should be able to use the basic tango vocabulary to make dances as diverse as piano music, to express our tastes, moods, and styles.

Why does it mostly look more or less the same?

And why do so many people limit the range of music they dance to. Surely other music also moves them? Why not use tango to connect more deeply to all the music we love?

If we’re going to do it several nights a week for the rest of our lives, let’s explore this instrument fully.





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