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A Way of Life | An Interview with Antonio Tanguma Jr.

 

Antonio Tanguma, Jr. on his music, life, career and
filming the Diatonic Curriculum for AccordionLife.com

 


Interview by Ricardo Hernandez
Photos Courtesty of Antonio Tanguma, Jr.

Featured in the 2016 Fall Issue of Accordion Life Today.


 

 

 

Hohner Endorsee, Antonio Tanguma, Jr.
Hohner Endorsee Antonio Tanguma, Jr.

Antonio Tanguma, Jr. is a graduate of Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León, UANL, one of the best universities in Mexico and Latin America. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Music and Instrumental and is currently working on his Master’s in Psychology. Antonio is an accordionist, singer, composer and arranger. He has joined the Accordion Life team to bring diatonic courses in all levels to the online community of AccordionLife.com. We had the opportunity to interview Antonio during his trip to Spokane in September. His story is his own to share. This is his way of life.

 
 
 

 


 

Where were you born?

I was born in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, on the 25th of December of 1984.

 

What do you do for a living?

My job is music; I give classes, I’m a teacher. There are two universities in Monterrey; the Universidad Autonoma of Nuevo Leon and another. I teach specialized classes and, in addition, I’m an accordionist. I commit myself to presentations, recording albums. I’m a composer and I assist in productions for some groups. Then I also make arrangements.

 

Antonio’s Grandfather, Antonio Tanguma Guajardo “King of the Accordion”
Antonio’s Grandfather, Antonio Tanguma Guajardo “King of the Accordion”

How and when did you get started playing music? What role did your family have in that?

My first contact was…I don’t remember this. It’s what I have been told, right? Because I think I was two or three years old. It was like the first exposure and I didn’t play anything, or maybe it was earlier, right? But it was my first exposure with the instrument. My grandfather played it, my father also. He had a music group and, well, I would listen to them rehearse every afternoon and such. That was my first contact. I didn’t play or anything. At five years of age I started to play the drums. Eh, I started to get some rhythms, well, because I liked it. And that’s how I got started, first with the drums. Ten years passed. At 15 years of age I started to. One day my father went to play Las Mañanitas for my grandfather at the cemetery, and, well I went. And after that, I started to, it rose in me, I don’t know. It was like something, I don’t know, special. I arrived there and my uncle, he had his accordion as well, and with my dad’s, came to the piano accordion. I started with the piano accordion, with a Hohner with five registers, as I remember. I completely started to play these two pieces, El Cerro de la Silla and Claudia, two schottisches. That’s how I began, let’s say from 12:00 pm and until about 8:00 pm I was playing, with both hands, these two pieces. Later, as time passed, within a week I was learning. During this time there was no YouTube. There was nothing like that. So, I learned by ear. And later, I began to study a little more, to earn my degree in music. It went more or less like that.

 

Antonio with his Father, Gustavo Tanguma Solis
Antonio with his Father, Gustavo Tanguma Solis

What styles of music do you play? Tell us about them.

I play Norteño music; well those are my roots, my family legacy. It’s been 104 years of music. Well, 104 years within three generations. We spoke about that, my great-great-grandfather played the violin. We’re talking about the end of 1700, approximately. Well, then in the question of music, there are many years of music. Well, then, in addition to Norteño, I play Cumbia, I play Jazz, Bossa Nova, Blues, Classical, Baroque, Tango, some Electronic, and everything, everything that can be played with an accordion. I try to achieve success over each genre. Each genre has its uniqueness, its notes, its style. Well, I like it all. Obviously I am committed to Norteño music, but I also play … whatever musical piece. I enjoy all music and likewise, I play all types of music.

 

You play the left hand. This is not common among diatonic accordionists. Tell me about this.

Since early on, they showed me, but between brief periods. Because the day I picked up the accordion my uncle encouraged the bass notes. He taught me the positions only, and later after that I continued. Then came a time when I was able to fully play bass notes. Since then, I was able to play bass notes. Then I grabbed the accordion with buttons or diatonic and with bass notes. There are many ways to play the bass and with different levels. Let’s say I am at a level more or less pro because sometimes I really enjoy the left hand, or I can play a melody. Well, then that’s how it goes.

 

Antonio in front of the Bing Crosby Theater where the 2012 Trophée Mondial was held
Antonio in front of the Bing Crosby Theater where the 2012 Trophée Mondial was held.

I understand you have competed internationally. Tell me about that.

Yes, in 2012, here in Spokane, I came to compete and I placed fifth worldwide. It was awesome. It was an experience very awesome. I had never competed anywhere before. Something else that happened that was very special was that the fans were chanting, “Mexico number one,” but the judges, well, they placed me fifth. For the fans, I was number one. It was an awesome experience. Maybe, later, if there is time, since we have many projects, but maybe later I can enter one or two more competitions. I am 31 and I believe they have an age limit up to 35 years of age. But, I will try first place in other competitions. In this sense, I have a belonging there. That was awesome.

 

How did you become affiliated with Hohner?

Well, to begin with, following the website, Reyes Accordions, I met my good friend Gilberto many years ago. I believe greater than 14 years ago. It’s been a long time ago. First, by way of his webpage and after became friends. Once in a while we would speak by phone like that. And we would coexist in the forum and such. Later, we had the opportunity to meet and came here to Spokane. We ran into one another and here we hung out, and he liked my manner of playing. Apart from that, I’m always appreciative for the support I have received, like a friend. And now I have been invited to become part of the Hohner family. It’s a dream, an honor for me that a brand so recognized, worldwide, has noticed me. Well, it’s something for which there are no words, just appreciation and to return the support with everything; playing music, taking the music and accordions to every part of the world and demonstrating the quality of the instrument. I have always enjoyed Hohner. I started with Hohner and I tell you it’s an honor that they are so supportive and I have been included to be part of their family. And it was Reyes, it was he that invited, and for that I am forever grateful.

 

Passed down through the generations, music is very definitely a family tradition.
Passed down through the generations, music is very definitely a family tradition.

What has been a highlight of your career?

Presently, my success is in being a music teacher in Mexico. There I have my place. Also with the worldwide competition we can say that I have a place there. Currently I am composing a few pieces and little by little they are coming together. The fans ask for them during my exhibitions. They are my personal instrumental compositions, and now I am also working with vocal music. Well, now I have those highlights, and in Monterrey I am the professor, the first to graduate with a degree in music and people seek me out. I am inundated with this.

Another highlight is fan exhibitions and I think I have been achieving success with it. Coming in fifth place worldwide is also an honor. Also being with Hohner, these are some of my highlights. I continue to travel around the world with Norteño music, my music and the music of my grandfather, the legacy he has left us. And that is what I have achieved until now. God willing, I will carry on my efforts to continue to gain new success.

 

You’ve recently begun working with accordionlife.com to produce online courses for the diatonic accordion. How does this program work and what will the students learn?

This program, honestly, is very good. It is something that covers everything clearly. I think that if I had found something like this when I started, this would have taught me very fast. Even so, I learned very fast, thank God. And getting back to the question, this is a program that helps the person who knows nothing, and is at zero. They will be learning different techniques, rhythms and music also. We will have them working with different levels and different music. I think that this is the best program for learning the accordion.

 

Antonio standing next to a monument built in honor of his grandfather.
Antonio standing next to a monument built in honor of his grandfather.

You have a song that you perform where you actually swing the accordion like a lasso over your head while playing it. How did you come up with that idea and how did you perfect it?

That show, my grandfather started it, when he reached his point of drunkenness and he’s cutting it up. As it says in Mexico, cutting it up, right? And he would do it. Little by little people would ask for it. I got the idea from him. Nobody in the world does that. That is unique for us. And for me, I really like to do it; I love entertaining people. I’m always looking for something more to offer. Because I realized that you have to entertain. Whether playing, singing or doing some show. But always taking care to be a show of quality, a real show. So that they do not say it’s recorded, or something like that. But they used to tell how my grandfather did it; my grandmother told me, my father and such. And one day I tried it. He used to do it with a slower piece. Well I wanted to raise the difficulty so I got hold of El Circo, El Circo Polka. I then I tried it for the first time and it went well. I don’t practice that show. The people say, “ah, he must spend hours and hours practicing.” I don’t practice at all. I only tried it the first time. I said, I will try it to see if I get and I did. That’s it. Apart from there, I do not practice any portion of that. And when I play it like that among the fans, and I do that show, that is how I do it. Or rather I put on the accordion and dance, and sometimes, when I am excited because the fans encourage me, then I do it. That is, swing the accordion. Swing or flourish like the charros swing a lasso and get the reaction. Well, I swing the accordion, as the lasso.

 

Antonio's Son enjoying a small diatonic.
Antonio’s son enjoying a small diatonic accordion.

Tell me about your most recent concerts, performances and travels?

Right now, before coming here, I was in Campeche, with the people there of Campeche, there in Mexico. That was a success there to tell the truth. We are always received well, thank God, everywhere we go. And, right now, we have a tour. We return to Nuevo León, in Monterey. I say Nuevo León, there. A suburb of Nuevo León and then on the 12th we travel to Apollonia, Kraków, Czech Republic, some other European countries. We travel playing music, our music, our Mexican Norteño music.

 

Is the diatonic the only instrument you play?

I play the accordion piano, that’s what I started with. The diatonic accordion, the chromatic accordion, also a little the piano, a little percussions, eh, a bit of the bass. I know some instruments. Let’s say that since I already know the theory, I can apply them all the same. It’s only the techniques change. But, sure I play some instruments but I, my strength is in the accordion.

 

Antonio Tanguma Jr.
Antonio Tanguma Jr.

Where did you study music?

I first studied, as already commented before, at home. Let’s say I am self-taught because only two pieces my uncle taught me. Apart from that everything I heard, everything I played I learned little by little. Also, my dad would occasionally show me some things but very slowly. There was another gentleman named Calin. Well, my uncle first, my uncle mainly. My uncle and I were there chatting and we got started. Later my father would show me a few things as well as Calin. This Mr. Calin one day, while teaching me, he played the saxophone and showed me a music sheet. And there he showed me some scales and other things as well. There was when I understood a little about scales — majors and minors and stuff like that. As time passed, a gentleman, Doctor Jesus Ancer, gave me a scholarship to study at Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León in music and there I started my degree in music. I did not know how to read or write music, nothing, nothing, nothing. I started at zero. I knew how to play but not read nor write music. There I learned. Later I changed from the accordion to the chromatic accordion, one with five rows. And there I studied everything and, thank God, I graduated. There I played with the symphony. It was my final exam and all. It was awesome there. I have learned in many locations, as they say schooled on the streets, in the school also. But a lot of what you learn is on the street. It’s during events, with fans when you have them close by, when they ask you play something, it forces you to learn. Between the school and the streets are different. The scene at school and in the public, but if one is dedicated to the music you have to learn both. Because there are people that just learn in school and they are thrown into the public and they get scared. So, you have to have both. You have to play for the fans and not have fear, right? But I say what has been my role to play, right? Well I always love music. I love the accordion and my way of life.

 

 

YOUR TURN: How has the accordion impacted your WAY OF LIFE?

 

 

January 9, 2017

0 responses on "A Way of Life | An Interview with Antonio Tanguma Jr."

Leave a Message

A Way of Life | An Interview with Antonio Tanguma Jr.

 

Antonio Tanguma, Jr. on his music, life, career and
filming the Diatonic Curriculum for AccordionLife.com

 


Interview by Ricardo Hernandez
Photos Courtesty of Antonio Tanguma, Jr.

Featured in the 2016 Fall Issue of Accordion Life Today.


 

 

 

Hohner Endorsee, Antonio Tanguma, Jr.
Hohner Endorsee Antonio Tanguma, Jr.

Antonio Tanguma, Jr. is a graduate of Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León, UANL, one of the best universities in Mexico and Latin America. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Music and Instrumental and is currently working on his Master’s in Psychology. Antonio is an accordionist, singer, composer and arranger. He has joined the Accordion Life team to bring diatonic courses in all levels to the online community of AccordionLife.com. We had the opportunity to interview Antonio during his trip to Spokane in September. His story is his own to share. This is his way of life.

 
 
 

 


 

Where were you born?

I was born in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, on the 25th of December of 1984.

 

What do you do for a living?

My job is music; I give classes, I’m a teacher. There are two universities in Monterrey; the Universidad Autonoma of Nuevo Leon and another. I teach specialized classes and, in addition, I’m an accordionist. I commit myself to presentations, recording albums. I’m a composer and I assist in productions for some groups. Then I also make arrangements.

 

Antonio’s Grandfather, Antonio Tanguma Guajardo “King of the Accordion”
Antonio’s Grandfather, Antonio Tanguma Guajardo “King of the Accordion”

How and when did you get started playing music? What role did your family have in that?

My first contact was…I don’t remember this. It’s what I have been told, right? Because I think I was two or three years old. It was like the first exposure and I didn’t play anything, or maybe it was earlier, right? But it was my first exposure with the instrument. My grandfather played it, my father also. He had a music group and, well, I would listen to them rehearse every afternoon and such. That was my first contact. I didn’t play or anything. At five years of age I started to play the drums. Eh, I started to get some rhythms, well, because I liked it. And that’s how I got started, first with the drums. Ten years passed. At 15 years of age I started to. One day my father went to play Las Mañanitas for my grandfather at the cemetery, and, well I went. And after that, I started to, it rose in me, I don’t know. It was like something, I don’t know, special. I arrived there and my uncle, he had his accordion as well, and with my dad’s, came to the piano accordion. I started with the piano accordion, with a Hohner with five registers, as I remember. I completely started to play these two pieces, El Cerro de la Silla and Claudia, two schottisches. That’s how I began, let’s say from 12:00 pm and until about 8:00 pm I was playing, with both hands, these two pieces. Later, as time passed, within a week I was learning. During this time there was no YouTube. There was nothing like that. So, I learned by ear. And later, I began to study a little more, to earn my degree in music. It went more or less like that.

 

Antonio with his Father, Gustavo Tanguma Solis
Antonio with his Father, Gustavo Tanguma Solis

What styles of music do you play? Tell us about them.

I play Norteño music; well those are my roots, my family legacy. It’s been 104 years of music. Well, 104 years within three generations. We spoke about that, my great-great-grandfather played the violin. We’re talking about the end of 1700, approximately. Well, then in the question of music, there are many years of music. Well, then, in addition to Norteño, I play Cumbia, I play Jazz, Bossa Nova, Blues, Classical, Baroque, Tango, some Electronic, and everything, everything that can be played with an accordion. I try to achieve success over each genre. Each genre has its uniqueness, its notes, its style. Well, I like it all. Obviously I am committed to Norteño music, but I also play … whatever musical piece. I enjoy all music and likewise, I play all types of music.

 

You play the left hand. This is not common among diatonic accordionists. Tell me about this.

Since early on, they showed me, but between brief periods. Because the day I picked up the accordion my uncle encouraged the bass notes. He taught me the positions only, and later after that I continued. Then came a time when I was able to fully play bass notes. Since then, I was able to play bass notes. Then I grabbed the accordion with buttons or diatonic and with bass notes. There are many ways to play the bass and with different levels. Let’s say I am at a level more or less pro because sometimes I really enjoy the left hand, or I can play a melody. Well, then that’s how it goes.

 

Antonio in front of the Bing Crosby Theater where the 2012 Trophée Mondial was held
Antonio in front of the Bing Crosby Theater where the 2012 Trophée Mondial was held.

I understand you have competed internationally. Tell me about that.

Yes, in 2012, here in Spokane, I came to compete and I placed fifth worldwide. It was awesome. It was an experience very awesome. I had never competed anywhere before. Something else that happened that was very special was that the fans were chanting, “Mexico number one,” but the judges, well, they placed me fifth. For the fans, I was number one. It was an awesome experience. Maybe, later, if there is time, since we have many projects, but maybe later I can enter one or two more competitions. I am 31 and I believe they have an age limit up to 35 years of age. But, I will try first place in other competitions. In this sense, I have a belonging there. That was awesome.

 

How did you become affiliated with Hohner?

Well, to begin with, following the website, Reyes Accordions, I met my good friend Gilberto many years ago. I believe greater than 14 years ago. It’s been a long time ago. First, by way of his webpage and after became friends. Once in a while we would speak by phone like that. And we would coexist in the forum and such. Later, we had the opportunity to meet and came here to Spokane. We ran into one another and here we hung out, and he liked my manner of playing. Apart from that, I’m always appreciative for the support I have received, like a friend. And now I have been invited to become part of the Hohner family. It’s a dream, an honor for me that a brand so recognized, worldwide, has noticed me. Well, it’s something for which there are no words, just appreciation and to return the support with everything; playing music, taking the music and accordions to every part of the world and demonstrating the quality of the instrument. I have always enjoyed Hohner. I started with Hohner and I tell you it’s an honor that they are so supportive and I have been included to be part of their family. And it was Reyes, it was he that invited, and for that I am forever grateful.

 

Passed down through the generations, music is very definitely a family tradition.
Passed down through the generations, music is very definitely a family tradition.

What has been a highlight of your career?

Presently, my success is in being a music teacher in Mexico. There I have my place. Also with the worldwide competition we can say that I have a place there. Currently I am composing a few pieces and little by little they are coming together. The fans ask for them during my exhibitions. They are my personal instrumental compositions, and now I am also working with vocal music. Well, now I have those highlights, and in Monterrey I am the professor, the first to graduate with a degree in music and people seek me out. I am inundated with this.

Another highlight is fan exhibitions and I think I have been achieving success with it. Coming in fifth place worldwide is also an honor. Also being with Hohner, these are some of my highlights. I continue to travel around the world with Norteño music, my music and the music of my grandfather, the legacy he has left us. And that is what I have achieved until now. God willing, I will carry on my efforts to continue to gain new success.

 

You’ve recently begun working with accordionlife.com to produce online courses for the diatonic accordion. How does this program work and what will the students learn?

This program, honestly, is very good. It is something that covers everything clearly. I think that if I had found something like this when I started, this would have taught me very fast. Even so, I learned very fast, thank God. And getting back to the question, this is a program that helps the person who knows nothing, and is at zero. They will be learning different techniques, rhythms and music also. We will have them working with different levels and different music. I think that this is the best program for learning the accordion.

 

Antonio standing next to a monument built in honor of his grandfather.
Antonio standing next to a monument built in honor of his grandfather.

You have a song that you perform where you actually swing the accordion like a lasso over your head while playing it. How did you come up with that idea and how did you perfect it?

That show, my grandfather started it, when he reached his point of drunkenness and he’s cutting it up. As it says in Mexico, cutting it up, right? And he would do it. Little by little people would ask for it. I got the idea from him. Nobody in the world does that. That is unique for us. And for me, I really like to do it; I love entertaining people. I’m always looking for something more to offer. Because I realized that you have to entertain. Whether playing, singing or doing some show. But always taking care to be a show of quality, a real show. So that they do not say it’s recorded, or something like that. But they used to tell how my grandfather did it; my grandmother told me, my father and such. And one day I tried it. He used to do it with a slower piece. Well I wanted to raise the difficulty so I got hold of El Circo, El Circo Polka. I then I tried it for the first time and it went well. I don’t practice that show. The people say, “ah, he must spend hours and hours practicing.” I don’t practice at all. I only tried it the first time. I said, I will try it to see if I get and I did. That’s it. Apart from there, I do not practice any portion of that. And when I play it like that among the fans, and I do that show, that is how I do it. Or rather I put on the accordion and dance, and sometimes, when I am excited because the fans encourage me, then I do it. That is, swing the accordion. Swing or flourish like the charros swing a lasso and get the reaction. Well, I swing the accordion, as the lasso.

 

Antonio's Son enjoying a small diatonic.
Antonio’s son enjoying a small diatonic accordion.

Tell me about your most recent concerts, performances and travels?

Right now, before coming here, I was in Campeche, with the people there of Campeche, there in Mexico. That was a success there to tell the truth. We are always received well, thank God, everywhere we go. And, right now, we have a tour. We return to Nuevo León, in Monterey. I say Nuevo León, there. A suburb of Nuevo León and then on the 12th we travel to Apollonia, Kraków, Czech Republic, some other European countries. We travel playing music, our music, our Mexican Norteño music.

 

Is the diatonic the only instrument you play?

I play the accordion piano, that’s what I started with. The diatonic accordion, the chromatic accordion, also a little the piano, a little percussions, eh, a bit of the bass. I know some instruments. Let’s say that since I already know the theory, I can apply them all the same. It’s only the techniques change. But, sure I play some instruments but I, my strength is in the accordion.

 

Antonio Tanguma Jr.
Antonio Tanguma Jr.

Where did you study music?

I first studied, as already commented before, at home. Let’s say I am self-taught because only two pieces my uncle taught me. Apart from that everything I heard, everything I played I learned little by little. Also, my dad would occasionally show me some things but very slowly. There was another gentleman named Calin. Well, my uncle first, my uncle mainly. My uncle and I were there chatting and we got started. Later my father would show me a few things as well as Calin. This Mr. Calin one day, while teaching me, he played the saxophone and showed me a music sheet. And there he showed me some scales and other things as well. There was when I understood a little about scales — majors and minors and stuff like that. As time passed, a gentleman, Doctor Jesus Ancer, gave me a scholarship to study at Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León in music and there I started my degree in music. I did not know how to read or write music, nothing, nothing, nothing. I started at zero. I knew how to play but not read nor write music. There I learned. Later I changed from the accordion to the chromatic accordion, one with five rows. And there I studied everything and, thank God, I graduated. There I played with the symphony. It was my final exam and all. It was awesome there. I have learned in many locations, as they say schooled on the streets, in the school also. But a lot of what you learn is on the street. It’s during events, with fans when you have them close by, when they ask you play something, it forces you to learn. Between the school and the streets are different. The scene at school and in the public, but if one is dedicated to the music you have to learn both. Because there are people that just learn in school and they are thrown into the public and they get scared. So, you have to have both. You have to play for the fans and not have fear, right? But I say what has been my role to play, right? Well I always love music. I love the accordion and my way of life.

 

 

YOUR TURN: How has the accordion impacted your WAY OF LIFE?

 

 

January 9, 2017

0 responses on "A Way of Life | An Interview with Antonio Tanguma Jr."

Leave a Message

A Way of Life | An Interview with Antonio Tanguma Jr.

 

Antonio Tanguma, Jr. on his music, life, career and
filming the Diatonic Curriculum for AccordionLife.com

 


Interview by Ricardo Hernandez
Photos Courtesty of Antonio Tanguma, Jr.

Featured in the 2016 Fall Issue of Accordion Life Today.


 

 

 

Hohner Endorsee, Antonio Tanguma, Jr.
Hohner Endorsee Antonio Tanguma, Jr.

Antonio Tanguma, Jr. is a graduate of Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León, UANL, one of the best universities in Mexico and Latin America. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Music and Instrumental and is currently working on his Master’s in Psychology. Antonio is an accordionist, singer, composer and arranger. He has joined the Accordion Life team to bring diatonic courses in all levels to the online community of AccordionLife.com. We had the opportunity to interview Antonio during his trip to Spokane in September. His story is his own to share. This is his way of life.

 
 
 

 


 

Where were you born?

I was born in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, on the 25th of December of 1984.

 

What do you do for a living?

My job is music; I give classes, I’m a teacher. There are two universities in Monterrey; the Universidad Autonoma of Nuevo Leon and another. I teach specialized classes and, in addition, I’m an accordionist. I commit myself to presentations, recording albums. I’m a composer and I assist in productions for some groups. Then I also make arrangements.

 

Antonio’s Grandfather, Antonio Tanguma Guajardo “King of the Accordion”
Antonio’s Grandfather, Antonio Tanguma Guajardo “King of the Accordion”

How and when did you get started playing music? What role did your family have in that?

My first contact was…I don’t remember this. It’s what I have been told, right? Because I think I was two or three years old. It was like the first exposure and I didn’t play anything, or maybe it was earlier, right? But it was my first exposure with the instrument. My grandfather played it, my father also. He had a music group and, well, I would listen to them rehearse every afternoon and such. That was my first contact. I didn’t play or anything. At five years of age I started to play the drums. Eh, I started to get some rhythms, well, because I liked it. And that’s how I got started, first with the drums. Ten years passed. At 15 years of age I started to. One day my father went to play Las Mañanitas for my grandfather at the cemetery, and, well I went. And after that, I started to, it rose in me, I don’t know. It was like something, I don’t know, special. I arrived there and my uncle, he had his accordion as well, and with my dad’s, came to the piano accordion. I started with the piano accordion, with a Hohner with five registers, as I remember. I completely started to play these two pieces, El Cerro de la Silla and Claudia, two schottisches. That’s how I began, let’s say from 12:00 pm and until about 8:00 pm I was playing, with both hands, these two pieces. Later, as time passed, within a week I was learning. During this time there was no YouTube. There was nothing like that. So, I learned by ear. And later, I began to study a little more, to earn my degree in music. It went more or less like that.

 

Antonio with his Father, Gustavo Tanguma Solis
Antonio with his Father, Gustavo Tanguma Solis

What styles of music do you play? Tell us about them.

I play Norteño music; well those are my roots, my family legacy. It’s been 104 years of music. Well, 104 years within three generations. We spoke about that, my great-great-grandfather played the violin. We’re talking about the end of 1700, approximately. Well, then in the question of music, there are many years of music. Well, then, in addition to Norteño, I play Cumbia, I play Jazz, Bossa Nova, Blues, Classical, Baroque, Tango, some Electronic, and everything, everything that can be played with an accordion. I try to achieve success over each genre. Each genre has its uniqueness, its notes, its style. Well, I like it all. Obviously I am committed to Norteño music, but I also play … whatever musical piece. I enjoy all music and likewise, I play all types of music.

 

You play the left hand. This is not common among diatonic accordionists. Tell me about this.

Since early on, they showed me, but between brief periods. Because the day I picked up the accordion my uncle encouraged the bass notes. He taught me the positions only, and later after that I continued. Then came a time when I was able to fully play bass notes. Since then, I was able to play bass notes. Then I grabbed the accordion with buttons or diatonic and with bass notes. There are many ways to play the bass and with different levels. Let’s say I am at a level more or less pro because sometimes I really enjoy the left hand, or I can play a melody. Well, then that’s how it goes.

 

Antonio in front of the Bing Crosby Theater where the 2012 Trophée Mondial was held
Antonio in front of the Bing Crosby Theater where the 2012 Trophée Mondial was held.

I understand you have competed internationally. Tell me about that.

Yes, in 2012, here in Spokane, I came to compete and I placed fifth worldwide. It was awesome. It was an experience very awesome. I had never competed anywhere before. Something else that happened that was very special was that the fans were chanting, “Mexico number one,” but the judges, well, they placed me fifth. For the fans, I was number one. It was an awesome experience. Maybe, later, if there is time, since we have many projects, but maybe later I can enter one or two more competitions. I am 31 and I believe they have an age limit up to 35 years of age. But, I will try first place in other competitions. In this sense, I have a belonging there. That was awesome.

 

How did you become affiliated with Hohner?

Well, to begin with, following the website, Reyes Accordions, I met my good friend Gilberto many years ago. I believe greater than 14 years ago. It’s been a long time ago. First, by way of his webpage and after became friends. Once in a while we would speak by phone like that. And we would coexist in the forum and such. Later, we had the opportunity to meet and came here to Spokane. We ran into one another and here we hung out, and he liked my manner of playing. Apart from that, I’m always appreciative for the support I have received, like a friend. And now I have been invited to become part of the Hohner family. It’s a dream, an honor for me that a brand so recognized, worldwide, has noticed me. Well, it’s something for which there are no words, just appreciation and to return the support with everything; playing music, taking the music and accordions to every part of the world and demonstrating the quality of the instrument. I have always enjoyed Hohner. I started with Hohner and I tell you it’s an honor that they are so supportive and I have been included to be part of their family. And it was Reyes, it was he that invited, and for that I am forever grateful.

 

Passed down through the generations, music is very definitely a family tradition.
Passed down through the generations, music is very definitely a family tradition.

What has been a highlight of your career?

Presently, my success is in being a music teacher in Mexico. There I have my place. Also with the worldwide competition we can say that I have a place there. Currently I am composing a few pieces and little by little they are coming together. The fans ask for them during my exhibitions. They are my personal instrumental compositions, and now I am also working with vocal music. Well, now I have those highlights, and in Monterrey I am the professor, the first to graduate with a degree in music and people seek me out. I am inundated with this.

Another highlight is fan exhibitions and I think I have been achieving success with it. Coming in fifth place worldwide is also an honor. Also being with Hohner, these are some of my highlights. I continue to travel around the world with Norteño music, my music and the music of my grandfather, the legacy he has left us. And that is what I have achieved until now. God willing, I will carry on my efforts to continue to gain new success.

 

You’ve recently begun working with accordionlife.com to produce online courses for the diatonic accordion. How does this program work and what will the students learn?

This program, honestly, is very good. It is something that covers everything clearly. I think that if I had found something like this when I started, this would have taught me very fast. Even so, I learned very fast, thank God. And getting back to the question, this is a program that helps the person who knows nothing, and is at zero. They will be learning different techniques, rhythms and music also. We will have them working with different levels and different music. I think that this is the best program for learning the accordion.

 

Antonio standing next to a monument built in honor of his grandfather.
Antonio standing next to a monument built in honor of his grandfather.

You have a song that you perform where you actually swing the accordion like a lasso over your head while playing it. How did you come up with that idea and how did you perfect it?

That show, my grandfather started it, when he reached his point of drunkenness and he’s cutting it up. As it says in Mexico, cutting it up, right? And he would do it. Little by little people would ask for it. I got the idea from him. Nobody in the world does that. That is unique for us. And for me, I really like to do it; I love entertaining people. I’m always looking for something more to offer. Because I realized that you have to entertain. Whether playing, singing or doing some show. But always taking care to be a show of quality, a real show. So that they do not say it’s recorded, or something like that. But they used to tell how my grandfather did it; my grandmother told me, my father and such. And one day I tried it. He used to do it with a slower piece. Well I wanted to raise the difficulty so I got hold of El Circo, El Circo Polka. I then I tried it for the first time and it went well. I don’t practice that show. The people say, “ah, he must spend hours and hours practicing.” I don’t practice at all. I only tried it the first time. I said, I will try it to see if I get and I did. That’s it. Apart from there, I do not practice any portion of that. And when I play it like that among the fans, and I do that show, that is how I do it. Or rather I put on the accordion and dance, and sometimes, when I am excited because the fans encourage me, then I do it. That is, swing the accordion. Swing or flourish like the charros swing a lasso and get the reaction. Well, I swing the accordion, as the lasso.

 

Antonio's Son enjoying a small diatonic.
Antonio’s son enjoying a small diatonic accordion.

Tell me about your most recent concerts, performances and travels?

Right now, before coming here, I was in Campeche, with the people there of Campeche, there in Mexico. That was a success there to tell the truth. We are always received well, thank God, everywhere we go. And, right now, we have a tour. We return to Nuevo León, in Monterey. I say Nuevo León, there. A suburb of Nuevo León and then on the 12th we travel to Apollonia, Kraków, Czech Republic, some other European countries. We travel playing music, our music, our Mexican Norteño music.

 

Is the diatonic the only instrument you play?

I play the accordion piano, that’s what I started with. The diatonic accordion, the chromatic accordion, also a little the piano, a little percussions, eh, a bit of the bass. I know some instruments. Let’s say that since I already know the theory, I can apply them all the same. It’s only the techniques change. But, sure I play some instruments but I, my strength is in the accordion.

 

Antonio Tanguma Jr.
Antonio Tanguma Jr.

Where did you study music?

I first studied, as already commented before, at home. Let’s say I am self-taught because only two pieces my uncle taught me. Apart from that everything I heard, everything I played I learned little by little. Also, my dad would occasionally show me some things but very slowly. There was another gentleman named Calin. Well, my uncle first, my uncle mainly. My uncle and I were there chatting and we got started. Later my father would show me a few things as well as Calin. This Mr. Calin one day, while teaching me, he played the saxophone and showed me a music sheet. And there he showed me some scales and other things as well. There was when I understood a little about scales — majors and minors and stuff like that. As time passed, a gentleman, Doctor Jesus Ancer, gave me a scholarship to study at Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León in music and there I started my degree in music. I did not know how to read or write music, nothing, nothing, nothing. I started at zero. I knew how to play but not read nor write music. There I learned. Later I changed from the accordion to the chromatic accordion, one with five rows. And there I studied everything and, thank God, I graduated. There I played with the symphony. It was my final exam and all. It was awesome there. I have learned in many locations, as they say schooled on the streets, in the school also. But a lot of what you learn is on the street. It’s during events, with fans when you have them close by, when they ask you play something, it forces you to learn. Between the school and the streets are different. The scene at school and in the public, but if one is dedicated to the music you have to learn both. Because there are people that just learn in school and they are thrown into the public and they get scared. So, you have to have both. You have to play for the fans and not have fear, right? But I say what has been my role to play, right? Well I always love music. I love the accordion and my way of life.

 

 

YOUR TURN: How has the accordion impacted your WAY OF LIFE?

 

 

January 9, 2017

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Estilo de vida | Entrevista con Antonio Tanguma Jr.

 

Antonio Tanguma, Jr. por su música, vida, carrera y
Filmar el Diatonic Curriculum para AccordionLife.com

 


Entrevista de Ricardo Hernandez
Fotos cortesía de Antonio Tanguma, Jr.

Destacado en el número de otoño de 2016 de Accordion Life Today.


 

 

 

Hohner Endorsee, Antonio Tanguma, Jr.
Hohner Endorsee Antonio Tanguma, Jr.

Antonio Tanguma, Jr. es graduado de la Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León, UANL, una de las mejores universidades de México y América Latina. Tiene una Licenciatura en Música e Instrumental y actualmente está trabajando en su Maestría en Psicología. Antonio es un acordeonista, cantante, compositor y arreglista. Él se ha unido al equipo de la vida del acordeón para traer cursos diatonic en todos los niveles a la comunidad en línea de AccordionLife.com. Tuvimos la oportunidad de entrevistar a Antonio durante su viaje a Spokane en septiembre. Su historia es suya para compartir. Este es su estilo de vida

 

 


 


¿Donde naciste?

Nací en Monterrey, Nuevo León, México, el 25 de diciembre de 1984.

 

¿A qué se dedica?

Mi trabajo es música; Yo doy clases, soy un maestro. Hay dos universidades en Monterrey; La Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León y otra. Enseño clases especializadas y, además, soy un acordeonista. Me comprometo a presentaciones, grabando álbumes. Soy compositor y asisto en producciones para algunos grupos. Entonces también hago arreglos.

 

Antonio’s Grandfather, Antonio Tanguma Guajardo “King of the Accordion”
Antonio’s Grandfather, Antonio Tanguma Guajardo “King of the Accordion”

¿Cómo y cuándo empezó a tocar música? ¿Qué papel tuvo su familia en eso?

Mi primer contacto fue … No recuerdo esto. Es lo que me han dicho, ¿verdad? Porque creo que tenía dos o tres años. Fue como la primera exposición y no jugar nada, o tal vez fue antes, ¿verdad? Pero fue mi primera exposición con el instrumento. Mi abuelo lo interpretó, mi padre también. Tenía un grupo de música y, bueno, los escuchaba ensayar todas las tardes y tal. Ese fue mi primer contacto. No jugué ni nada. A los cinco años empecé a tocar la batería. Eh, empecé a tener algunos ritmos, bueno, porque me gustó. Y así fue como empecé, primero con los tambores. Pasaron diez años. A los 15 años empecé a hacerlo. Un día mi padre fue a jugar Las Mañanitas para mi abuelo en el cementerio, y bueno, fui. Y después de eso, empecé a, se levantó en mí, no lo sé. Era como algo, no sé, especial. Llegué allí y mi tío, él también tenía su acordeón, y con el de mi papá, vino al acordeón de piano. Comencé con el acordeón de piano, con un Hohner con cinco registros, como recuerdo. Comencé completamente a tocar estas dos piezas, El Cerro de la Silla y Claudia, dos schottisches. Así es como comencé, digamos de 12:00 pm y hasta cerca de las 8:00 pm estaba jugando, con ambas manos, estas dos piezas. Más tarde, con el paso del tiempo, en una semana estuve aprendiendo. Durante este tiempo no había YouTube. No había nada como eso. Así que aprendí de oído. Y más tarde, comencé a estudiar un poco más, para obtener mi título en música. Fue más o menos así.

 

Antonio with his Father, Gustavo Tanguma Solis
Antonio with his Father, Gustavo Tanguma Solis

¿Qué estilos de música juegas? Háblanos de ellos.

Yo toco música norteña; Bueno, esas son mis raíces, mi legado familiar. Han sido 104 años de música. Bueno, 104 años dentro de tres generaciones. Hablamos de eso, mi tatarabuelo tocaba el violín. Estamos hablando del final de 1700, aproximadamente. Bueno, entonces en la cuestión de la música, hay muchos años de música. Bueno, entonces, además de Norteño, toco Cumbia, toco Jazz, Bossa Nova, Blues, Clásica, Barroca, Tango, Electrónica, y todo, todo lo que se puede tocar con un acordeón. Trato de lograr el éxito en cada género. Cada género tiene su singularidad, sus notas, su estilo. Bueno, me gusta todo. Obviamente estoy comprometido con la música Norteño, pero también toco … cualquier pieza musical. Me gusta toda la música y también, toco todo tipo de música.

 

Usted juega la mano izquierda. Esto no es común entre los acordeonistas diatónicos. Háblame de esto.

Desde temprano, me mostraron, pero entre breves períodos. Porque el día que cogí el acordeón mi tío alentó las notas de bajo. Él me enseñó las posiciones solamente, y más tarde después que continué. Luego llegó un momento en que era capaz de reproducir notas de bajo. Desde entonces, pude tocar notas de bajo. Luego agarré el acordeón con botones o diatónico y con notas de bajo. Hay muchas maneras de tocar el bajo y con diferentes niveles. Digamos que estoy a un nivel más o menos pro porque a veces me gusta mucho la mano izquierda, o puedo tocar una melodía. Bueno, entonces es así.

 

Antonio in front of the Bing Crosby Theater where the 2012 Trophée Mondial was held
Antonio en frente del Teatro Bing Crosby donde se celebró el Trofeo Mondial 2012.

Entiendo que usted ha competido internacionalmente. Cuéntame sobre eso.

Sí, en 2012, aquí en Spokane, vine a competir y me ubicé quinto en todo el mundo. Fue increíble. Fue una experiencia muy impresionante. Nunca había competido en ninguna parte antes. Otra cosa que pasó que fue muy especial fue que los fans estaban cantando, “México número uno”, pero los jueces, bueno, me colocaron quinto. Para los aficionados, yo era el número uno. Fue una experiencia maravillosa. Tal vez, más tarde, si hay tiempo, ya que tenemos muchos proyectos, pero quizás más tarde puedo entrar en una o dos competiciones más. Tengo 31 años y creo que tienen un límite de edad hasta los 35 años de edad. Pero, voy a tratar de primer lugar en otras competiciones. En este sentido, tengo una pertenencia allí. Eso fue asombroso.

 

¿Cómo te has asociado con Hohner?

Bueno, para empezar, siguiendo el sitio web, Reyes Accordions, conocí a mi buen amigo Gilberto hace muchos años. Creo que hace más de 14 años. Ha sido hace mucho tiempo. En primer lugar, a través de su página web y después se hicieron amigos. De vez en cuando hablábamos por teléfono así. Y coexistiríamos en el foro y tal. Más tarde, tuvimos la oportunidad de conocer y vinimos aquí a Spokane. Nos encontrábamos uno al otro y aquí nos salíamos, y le gustaba mi forma de tocar. Aparte de eso, siempre estoy agradecida por el apoyo que he recibido, como un amigo. Y ahora he sido invitado a formar parte de la familia Hohner. Es un sueño, un honor para mí que una marca tan reconocida, a nivel mundial, me haya notado. Bueno, es algo para lo que no hay palabras, solo aprecio y devolver el apoyo con todo; Tocando música, llevando la música y los acordeones a todas las partes del mundo y demostrando la calidad del instrumento. Siempre he disfrutado de Hohner. Empecé con Hohner y les digo que es un honor que ellos sean tan solidarios y que yo haya sido incluido para ser parte de su familia. Y fue Reyes, fue él quien me invitó, y por eso estoy eternamente agradecido.

 

Passed down through the generations, music is very definitely a family tradition.
Pasada a través de las generaciones, la música es definitivamente una tradición familiar.

¿Qué ha sido un punto culminante de su carrera?

Actualmente, mi éxito es ser maestro de música en México. Allí tengo mi casa. También con la competencia mundial podemos decir que tengo un lugar allí. Actualmente estoy componiendo unas cuantas piezas y poco a poco van viniendo juntas. Los aficionados los piden durante mis exposiciones. Son mis composiciones instrumentales personales, y ahora también estoy trabajando con música vocal. Bueno, ahora tengo esos puntos culminantes, y en Monterrey soy el profesor, el primero en graduarme con un título en música y la gente me busca. Estoy inundado con esto.

Otro punto culminante son las exposiciones de fan y creo que he estado logrando éxito con él. Estar en quinto lugar en todo el mundo es también un honor. También con Hohner, estos son algunos de mis puntos destacados. Continúo viajando por el mundo con la música Norteño, mi música y la música de mi abuelo, el legado que nos ha dejado. Y eso es lo que he logrado hasta ahora. Si Dios quiere, continuaré mis esfuerzos para seguir ganando nuevos éxitos.

 

Recientemente has empezado a trabajar con accordionlife.com para producir cursos en línea para el acordeón diatónico. ¿Cómo funciona este programa y qué aprenderán los estudiantes?

Este programa, honestamente, es muy bueno. Es algo que cubre todo con claridad. Creo que si hubiera encontrado algo como esto cuando comencé, esto me habría enseñado muy rápido. Aun así, aprendí muy rápido, gracias a Dios. Y volviendo a la pregunta, este es un programa que ayuda a la persona que no sabe nada, y está en cero. Estarán aprendiendo diferentes técnicas, ritmos y música también. Los haremos trabajar con diferentes niveles y diferentes músicas. Creo que este es el mejor programa para aprender el acordeón.

 

Antonio standing next to a monument built in honor of his grandfather.
Antonio de pie junto a un monumento construido en honor de su abuelo.

Usted tiene una canción que usted realiza donde usted realmente balancea el acordeón como un lazo sobre su cabeza mientras que lo juega. ¿Cómo surgió esa idea y cómo la perfeccionó?

Ese espectáculo, mi abuelo lo inició, cuando llegó a su punto de ebriedad y lo está cortando. Como dice en México, cortándolo, ¿no? Y lo haría. Poco a poco la gente lo pedía. Le dije la idea. Nadie en el mundo hace eso. Eso es único para nosotros. Y para mí, realmente me gusta hacerlo; Me encanta entretener a la gente. Siempre estoy buscando algo más que ofrecer. Porque me di cuenta de que tienes que entretener. Ya sea tocando, cantando o haciendo algún show. Pero siempre teniendo cuidado de ser un espectáculo de calidad, un verdadero espectáculo. Así que no dicen que está grabado, o algo así. Pero solían contar cómo lo hizo mi abuelo; Mi abuela me dijo, mi padre y tal. Y un día lo probé. Lo hacía con una pieza más lenta. Bueno, yo quería plantear la dificultad, así que me puse de El Circo, El Circo Polka. Entonces lo intenté por primera vez y salió bien. No practico ese espectáculo. La gente dice, “ah, él debe pasar horas y horas practicando.” Yo no practico en absoluto. Sólo lo probé la primera vez. Dije, lo intentaré para ver si consigo y lo hice. Eso es. Aparte de eso, no practico ninguna parte de eso. Y cuando lo hago así entre los aficionados, y hago ese show, así es como lo hago. O más bien me pongo el acordeón y la danza, ya veces, cuando estoy emocionado porque los fans me animan, entonces lo hago. Es decir, swing el acordeón. Swing o florecer como los charros swing un lazo y obtener la reacción. Bueno, balanceo el acordeón, como el lazo.

 

Antonio's Son enjoying a small diatonic.
Antonio’s son enjoying a small diatonic accordion.

¿Cuénteme sobre sus últimos conciertos, actuaciones y viajes?

Ahora mismo, antes de venir aquí, estaba en Campeche, con la gente de Campeche, allá en México. Eso fue un éxito allí para decir la verdad. Siempre nos reciben bien, gracias a Dios, por todas partes. Y, ahora mismo, tenemos un tour. Regresamos a Nuevo León, en Monterrey. Digo Nuevo León, allí. Un suburbio de Nuevo León y luego el 12 viajamos a Apollonia, Cracovia, República Checa, algunos otros países europeos. Viajamos tocando música, nuestra música, nuestra música mexicana Norteño.

 

¿Es la diatónica el único instrumento que tocas?

Yo toco el piano de acordeón, eso es lo que comencé. El acordeón diatónico, el acordeón cromático, también un poco el piano, un poco de percusión, eh, un poco del bajo. Conozco algunos instrumentos. Digamos que ya que ya conozco la teoría, puedo aplicarlas todas iguales. Sólo cambian las técnicas. Pero, seguro que toco algunos instrumentos pero yo, mi fuerza está en el acordeón.

 

Antonio Tanguma Jr.
Antonio Tanguma Jr.

¿Dónde estudiaste música?

Primero estudié, como ya comenté antes, en casa. Digamos que soy autodidacta porque sólo dos piezas me enseñó mi tío. Aparte de eso todo lo que escuché, todo lo que jugaba aprendí poco a poco. Además, mi papá ocasionalmente me mostrar algunas cosas, pero muy lentamente. Había otro caballero llamado Calin. Bueno, mi tío primero, mi tío principalmente. Mi tío y yo estábamos charlando y empezamos. Más tarde mi padre me mostraría algunas cosas, así como Calin. Este señor Calin un día, mientras me enseñaba, tocó el saxofón y me mostró una hoja de música. Y allí me mostró algunas escalas y otras cosas también. Hubo cuando comprendí un poco acerca de escalas – mayores y menores y cosas así. A medida que pasaba el tiempo, un señor, el doctor Jesús Ancer, me dio una beca para estudiar en la Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León en música y ahí empecé mi carrera en música. No sabía leer ni escribir música, nada, nada, nada. Comencé a cero. Sabía tocar pero no leía ni escribía música. Ahí aprendí. Más tarde cambié del acordeón al acordeón cromático, uno con cinco filas. Y allí estudié todo y, gracias a Dios, me gradué. Allí toqué con la sinfonía. Fue mi examen final y todo. Fue increíble allí. He aprendido en muchos lugares, como dicen que se escolarizan en las calles, en la escuela también. Pero mucho de lo que aprendes está en la calle. Es durante los eventos, con los fans cuando los tienes cerca, cuando te piden que juegues algo, te obliga a aprender. Entre la escuela y las calles son diferentes. La escena en la escuela y en el público, pero si uno está dedicado a la música que tiene que aprender tanto. Porque hay gente que acaba de aprender en la escuela y son arrojados al público y se asustan. Así pues, usted tiene que tener ambos. Tienes que jugar para los fans y no tener miedo, ¿verdad? Pero yo digo cuál ha sido mi papel para jugar, ¿verdad? Bueno, siempre me encanta la música. Me encanta el acordeón y mi estilo de vida.

 

 

SU TURNO: ¿Cómo ha afectado el acordeón su ESTILO DE VIDA?

 

 

February 7, 2017

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