Real name: Timoteo Saluzzi
Born: May 20, 1935 in Campo Santo, Argentina
Styles: World Fusion
Instruments: Bandoneon, Banjo
Composer, arranger, and world-class bandoneon player Dino Saluzzi was born in 1935 in Campo Santo, Argentina, the son of multi-instrumentalist and composer Cayetano Saluzzi, and spent his childhood in Buenos Aires, where he was a member of the Orquestra Estable at Radio el Mundo. By the age of 14 he was already leading his own bands (his first was Trio Carnival) and by the 1980s he had developed his unique bop-inflected and decidedly postmodern approach to the tango, an approach that has him artfully straddling the musical past, present, and future with casual yet acute balance. For all his association with the international avant-garde, Saluzzi still maintains his allegiance to the regional folk traditions of his youth, and that connection gives his sometimes fragmented compositions an uncommon center of gravity. Saluzzi's lengthy discography includes the albums Kultrum, Once Upon a Time - Far Away in the South (both from 1985), Volver (1986), Andina (1988), Argentina (1990), Mojotoro (1991), Rios (1995), Cite de la Musique (1997), Senderos (2005), Juan Condori (2006), and Ojos Negros (2007), most of which were released on the ECM imprint.
- Steve Leggett (All Music Guide)
Timoteo "Dino" Saluzzi was born in 1935 in Campo Santa, Argentina, into a family of folk musicians. Despite subsequent classical training, forays into avant-garde composition, and membership of the chamber group Musica Creativa, Dino has always maintained that his folk roots are the most crucial element of his music. On Mojotoro, the most extroverted of his ECM recordings, he literally brings it all back home. This is the first of his European releases to be recorded in Argentina, and his band comprises family and friends. His brothers Celso and Felix play, respectively, bandoneon and reeds, and his young son Jose Maria makes a particularly strong showing on guitar and bass. This project is nostalgic and forward looking: "Tango a mi Padre" reflects on Saluzzi's early years: "My father worked at the sugar cane factory and was barely able to support us", he told Jazz Forum's Krystian Brodacki. "We had no radio, no records, no electricity; we just lived close to nature, to folklore, to the primitive music of the Indians, untouched by any white influence. My father played the guitar and the mandolin, and later took up the bandeon. He played folk music from promotional music sheets, which were sent to us from the capital, more than a thousand miles away. It was he who introduced me and my two brothers to folk music. I took up the bandoneon when I was seven".
As for the future: "I believe we will be able to develop our own South Latin American music...This is already happening. A new Latin American type of expression exists and is paving the way for further new ideas." Mojotoro draws upon the full range of South American musics: tango, folk, candina music, candombe, the milonga music of the La Pampa province... The candombe is a particularly vital element in this "cultural symbiosis". The candombe rhythm originated in Africa and was brought to South America during colonial times, continuing to thrive in Uruguay. Its rediscovery by "tango nuevo" musicians has encouraged a new freedom of expression in the music, its "open" rhythms lending a terrific drive to the title track here. Of the tango itself, so often stilted in the hands of European interpreters, Saluzzi says: "The tango is far more complex than jazz. In the real artistic tango, which is kind of loose and permits free interpretation, it is not enough to know the technical part, the chords, the scales, etcetera, because it needs a totally different expression, less aggressive, far more artistic. The tango is something much more pure and complicated". Saluzzi's earlier ECM albums, the solo Kultrum and Andina (ECM 1251 and 1375) and the quartet recording Once upon a Time...Far Away in the South (ECM 1309) were all, in varying degree, wistful reflections upon Argentina from distance. Mojotoro, Dino's family album, is firmly rooted in the soil from which his inspiration springs. It is a warm, outgoing record.
Biography courtesy of Saudades Tourneen