Not To Miss Spring Music Events
Article by George Nelson.
There’s a wide selection of music to choose from in Buenos Aires during the second half of September through October and November. With tango, blues, rock, and cumbia — among other genres — set to take center stage over the coming weeks there is something for everyone ranging sold out stadiums to intimate, smoky joints hidden in the city.
Those looking for tango, either to dance or listen to, can always head down to San Telmo. Now the weather’s picking up it is possible to practice footwork in Plaza Dorrego on a Sunday afternoon but be warned, any ladies skirting undecidedly on the edge of the temporary dance mat will be whisked off their feet by eager OAPs eager to impress with their skills.
Watching local musicians playing traditional tango while enjoying a drink is a fine way to spend the afternoon in the area. The performances are often impromptu so follow your ears. Given tango is a permanent fixture in the city there is always somewhere to catch a performance from San Telmo’s Bar Sur and Rojo Tango to Mansión Dandi Royal in La Boca.
Rock n’ Roll
Avoiding talk of tango when dissecting Buenos Aires’ music scene can be tricky — no surprise given the style is embedded in the cultural foundations of the city — but Argentine rock and roll has recently taken center stage, albeit in tragic circumstances. Soda Stereo frontman Gustavo Cerati recently passed after spending four years in a coma following a stroke in 2010. Considered one of the most important figures of Ibero-American rock since the genre was born, Cerati’s death prompted a spike in digital sales of Soda Stereo’s biggest hits including “De Musica Ligera,” “Cuando Pase el Temblor,” and “Persiana Americana.”
Sadly these songs will never be played to a live audience by the entirety of Soda Stereo again but there’s plenty of international rock and roll to satiate fans’ appetites during the next few weeks in Buenos Aires. A number of the city’s large arenas are set to host huge crowds as spring strives to take the reigns from winter.
UK rockers Franz Ferdinand have attracted quite a following in South America over the years and once again return September 26 at Buenos Aires’ Complejo al Rio. The band’s fifth and most recent album “Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action” received favourable reviews and given the group hail from Glasgow there’s bound to be a few references to Scottish independence in their show, which will no doubt incite a passionate response from the Scots in the crowd.
Perennial U.S rockers Queens of the Stone Age are heading south from California at the beginning of October to play at Buenos Aires’ Estadio Luna Park. Expect heavy riffs and hardcore fans sporting black T-shirts emblazoned with the band’s logo — like a new-age heavy rock scene. Tickets start from US$50.
The Artic Monkeys will also be venturing over from the UK for November 8 to play to a sellout crowd at Estadio GEBA for Personal Fest with tickets starting at US$80. Formed in Sheffield in 2002, the indie rock band have released five studio albums and due to popular demand will also be playing in Córdoba a day later. Book early as tickets will be highly sought after; the band has toured Argentina before, notably at Quilmes Rock 2012 when they belted out such hits as “Brainstorm” and “When the Sun Goes Down” to screaming fans.
For those in search of something smoother, look no further than dreamboat Ricardo Arjona, who is one for the ladies although he’s sure to have a few excitable male fans. The Guatemalan singer-songwriter — not to mention former basketball player and school teacher — is one of the most successful Latin American artists of all time with more than 20 million album sales to his name. His dulcet tones will be bellowing across Estadio GEBA on no more than seven occasions this month from September 17 – 27.
Cumbia originated in Colombia but quickly spread throughout Latin America. Many variations of the genre now exist from Chilean Romantic Cumbia to Technocumbia. La Plata born Agapornis play the more traditional style cumbia and will be entertaining Argentines September 26 at Estadio Luna Park.
Ticket for the five aforementioned bands can be found here.