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Imaginary Jewish tradition for the best of Argentine music
Página 12

For Erik Satie first, for Debussy and Ravel later, the exotic, the Orient, the marginal traditions, functioned as a pretext to use scales and harmonic modes other than the hegemonic ones and, above all, to escape the omnipresent Wagnerian influence. Much later, when jazz, tango and rock – the great languages of popular tradition that emerged throughout the 20th century – increasingly resemble dead languages, it is once again strange cultures that allow a door and hope to be opened. .


Lerner and Moguilevsky drink from the Sephardic music fountain.

La Nacion

The cultural roots of César Lerner and Marcelo Moguilevsky are in klezmer music due to an ancestral issue: the Ashkenazi origin. Since they were born as a duo they explored these currents, but not because they felt any imposition; It was natural to them. It did not arise as an answer to a question (should we make klezmer music?), but as an attempt to take a look at the ancestral and, also, as a way to bring that cultural past to the present. First they investigated, then they embraced that repertoire.

Klezmer was born, like all popular music, as part of a social ritual. In this case, the religious celebrations of Ashkenazi Jews in the 15th century. Then it became profane and festive, it developed instrumentally and, at the end of the last millennium, it reached the New York avant-garde with the wild roar of John Zorn's sax. Almost at the same time and at the opposite pole, César Lerner (accordion, piano and percussion) and Marcelo Moguilevsky (winds, voices and that whistle) were boiling klezmer in the port of Buenos Aires. Then they dragged him upriver, like Gerchunoff's The Jewish Gauchos. Now, to go deeper and lighter, they favored twilight colors. Without losing sight of the popular edge, they added a handful of their own compositions to the traditional repertoire, which dialogue both with the history of the genre and subtly with each other. The conversation is that of two old friends: intimate and calm, with a hint of humor and some healed wounds.


Ritual enriches our present

“We artists censor ourselves and say not here. We want to give ourselves permission to do other things, perhaps as a result of the impunity that one has when one passes 60 and we give ourselves the luxury of feeling and showing,” says Marcelo Moguilevsky, who together with César Lerner presents his new show, “Tish”,

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