Ricardo -> RE: Moroccan "Chaabi" rhythm with 2 bars of 6/8 but all *sorts* of messed-up like... (Mar. 12 2021 15:16:46)
ORIGINAL: aaron peacock
I just always put the 1 in the wrong place :D but this rhythm rolls great
I found seguiriyas harder with this odd 5-count story... 2-2-3-3-2 wtf it's like a wagon wheel with a chip taken out of it, or a film editor who wants to go to lunch early, actually, I'll just put seguiriyas out there as the most mind-bending palo i encountered.
I'll even propose it (when por medio) as the mother palo, in vez of soléa, as it's the most "out-there" or is there one more exemplary of the idiomatic flamenco forms? am I nuts? no evidence of course, speculation and circumstantial congruence and my grandmotherly intuition.
plus, por medio is older than por arriba, as the Mi/E string was added later
That's a very cool sounding track with Mr. Nuñez there.
It really captures a certain fusion vibe from that late 70's plus somehow some latin flavor (the extra jiggy rhythmic fun? that bass player! not to mention excellent cajón)
Siguiriyas used to be faster in the “old days”. If you watch Piriñaca do palmas for her singing, she does a fast reversed Chaabi accent (not really as there is no 6/8 base underneath, but I mean the drum accent pattern) so like 6/8 then 3/4 (the chaabi is 3/4-6/8). I was gonna mention this actually when I said rumba alternates with tangos...rumba has 3 accents against the 6/8, and at full tempo, the chaabi thing sounds like the fast siguiriyas she does, minus your foot tap.
Anyway, she sings the melody starting on “1” of the 6/8 bar. That tells me that at some point in history, the guitar imposed a new concept of compas as it slowed down. You are correct that it seems “odd” as the symmetry seen above is lost in favor of 7+5 instead of 6+6.
7/8=Bb chord 2+2+3....
5/8=A chord 3+2...
The above phrase is adhered to by guitar players historically, regardless of tempo. There is no symmetry to break so it holds, solid as a rock through time. Singers sing on or around “1” of the 7/8 phrase as the down beat.
Interesting to note, Rafael Marin (1902 method book) viewed the 6/8 phrase as rumba, then an extra two beats are added (8+4)...probably for same reason as Piriñaca, that was how the pattern might have originated. However, as a pro player I know that math is wrong, it is 7+5 for sure, from early 1900’s till present. But...
The modern interpreters that brought back the fast tempo version (see Potito with Diego del morao), manage to create an effect of both at the same time....by emphasizing or changing the harmony to Bb on the “1” of the 6/8, and keeping the A tonic from the 456 part of the 6/8 ALL the way through the 3/4 bar. That way the old “1” that is honestly beat 2 of the 3/4 bar, is retained as well. Pretty cool trick.
About “mother form”... I would want to agree that Siguiriyas seems to hold on to some more ancient flavors and certainly the Arabic influence...it sounds less harmonic and more drone/modal than Solea or Fandango family members. To hear the proper effect I refer to, listen el Pele and Vicente Amigo version on “Canto”. Also the tona/martinete retains that quality since we never heard guitar with it. However, there are two problems.
1. The idea of “mother” form, is that she inspired or evolved into OTHER forms and variants. In that sense, even Fandangos is a better “mother” since Siguiriyas has only a limited amount of styles and variations. As often as I go through Norman’s audio of the Soler categorization of the siguiriyas styles, I only hear two main Phrygian melodies that are delivered in personal ways, the one that goes to C major, the one that goes up to D minor, and the cabales. So 5 main melodies. Fandangos plus malgueña and levante has like hundreds. Solea plus her children Buleria por solea, buleria, tientos tangos, they make for close to hundred I am sure.
2. Talking about harmony, the idea of the “cambio” in the letra, that being the relative major harmony that sets up the conclusion, used by choice or not by the guitarist in siguiriyas for one of the phrygian melodic styles, almost certainly derives from Solea. The fact it is not always used means it is not necessary, and the fact it DOES get used sometimes shows the influence of Solea on the form overall. That just adds weight to the importance of Solea as the “mother” form in general IMO. When applied to dance, the baile structures tend to derive from the typical Solea model as well. (Llamada, slow long letras first, faster “Macho” ones to conclude).