The Sound is Modern, the Issue is Lasting


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Present-day practitioners of Tango Nuevo, the modernist strain of Argentine tango, face a benign but persistent quandary. Call it the Piazzolla Problem: a need to acknowledge the work of Astor Piazzolla, who spearheaded the genre, without being subsumed by his shadow.

The pianist Pablo Ziegler--a Piazzolla sideman throughout the 1980s, the composers last working decade--has handled this negotiation better than most over the years. But that doesnt mean he has earned an exemption from its demands.

Mr. Ziegler is the steadfast headliner of the Tango Meets Jazz Festival, an event produced by Pat Philips and Ettore Stratta that is in its seventh year at Jazz Standard. A percussive, demonstrative pianist, he has a rigorous command of harmony and a knack for steel-girded ornamentation.

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