On March 11, 2012 at Faith Lutheran Church my friend Jenny Klukken performed a wonderful marimba solo called “Zamba para escuchar tu silencio” by Guillo Espel. I first heard about this piece at the Zeltsman Marimba Festival in 2009 and then heard it performed by Angel Frette at the Marimba 2010 International Festival and Conference.
I emailed Guillo Espel directly and he provided the following program notes:
“Zamba” is a traditional Argentine folk rhythm. For that reason, the title begins by giving an idea of the style of the piece, at least for the ones who are acquainted with traditional Argentine music. As to “para escuchar tu silencio,” we can translate like “to hear your silence”. The “Zamba” is an Argentine rhythm which is very popular & important in Argentina folk music. Rhythmically this song is unique as it is written in 6/8 instead of the normal 3/4 time and is usually accented on the last count of the measure than traditional simpler zamba music.Zamba music is often written in 6/8 and performed alternately in 3/4 and 6/8 time with the accents varying between measures. Traditionally zamba music has no relationship with chamber music. This piece is unique in that I bring my own connection to chamber music into a more traditional folk style by mixing the two styles. By shifting the traditional development of chords and the expanding the melody and by using the silence in the piece I am able to mix these two styles of music and expand upon a traditionalist zamba. By the way, the criterion of structuring the “musical silence” within each piece is one of my permanent concerns.
With Guillo Espel’s permission I was able to record and post Jenny’s performance below. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!
Guillo’s quartet also recorded a version of this which is also a great arrangement.
To learn more about Guillo Espel you can visit his website. Thanks to Guillo for this fantastic piece which I hope will be played more frequently throughout the entire world.