Buenas ondas en buenos aires
A few months ago, I heeded the call to go visit my friend in Buenos Aires (BAs). I didn't really know anything about this city to be perfectly honest. I don't do a ton of research before I leave for a place. And this trip, I was sort of seeing BAs as a bonus to seeing my friend Mili, my amazing hostess. It wasn't until later in the bus, when I pulled back the curtains just to look out to the side of the highway and realize: I have absolutely no idea what I was expecting.
The city itself is very charming, with old fashioned cafe and bistros, bohemian clothing stores, the gardens, and the architecture. I wasn't really... clicking with it at first though. But then, thanks to Mili, I discovered the cultural and independent music scene. BAs is not for the hasty tourist- it is very much reserved at first, a modest big city that tries to show you its beauty but keeps you at arm's length. If you have the time to stay though, the city will show you more- it will show you its soul.
Everywhere, around the clock, music oozes and echoes through the streets. I stayed in the Almagro neighborhood, and spent many nights in that area. A typical evening included an intimate, dimly lit bar, a shared 40, and short acts of live musical performances. For a little while there, we were running into the same duo, a guitarist and bandoneonist who would play these dramatic tango songs, pass the hat, and disappear into the night, evidently going to the next bar along their evening's route. The last place we hear them at was the Tango Catedral del Tango. This place has become a bit of a touristy hub, which is why you will see a lot of beginners taking lessons, and then staying around for the social scene. In the middle of the evening, the dancers cleared the floor, and all eyes were on the musicians, seated soaked in red light. The bandoneon (not an accordion! I was told several times). Below is a picture of the bandoneon. This instrument isat the epicenter of Argentinian tango music, and is a part of their history. Unlike the accordion, the bandonon has buttons on both sides, and someone correct me if I'm wrong cause I don't know the technical term for any of this... but it has a larger lung.
The impromptu music was a delight, but the city certainly is not short of options for planned musical gatherings. Folk, folklore, blues, and soul, the city is full of