Carlevaro - Technique

This discussion thread is dedicated to Carlevaro's technical aspect of his work.

How to Get Started

Maestro Carlevaro introduced his technical ideas to his students by using the technical Cuadernos accompanied by the School of Guitar book.

  • School of Guitar: Exposition of Instrumental Theory
  • Didactic Serie for Guitar, Cuaderno #1 - Diatonic Scales
  • Didactic Serie for Guitar, Cuaderno #2 - Right Hand Technique
  • Didactic Serie for Guitar, Cuaderno #3 - Left Hand Technique
  • Didactic Serie for Guitar, Cuaderno #4 - Left Hand Technique (Conclusion)
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    • don
    • don.2
    • 8 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    Hi guys, I got a question on the barre and the right arm, so now I’ve trying to use gravity and applying the analogy by Alfredo of a pianist hitting the key without the thumb, but i find that sometimes when I do that, the guitar will often be pulled in too much with my left hand and I needed to clamp the guitar body with my right arm. 

     

    There are certain barres, full or half that I find myself needing to apply a bit of thumb or clamp the guitar with my right arm.  Is this normal? Thanks!

    Like 1
      • don
      • don.2
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Blaise Laflamme Thanks Blaise, think right now maybe I'm still trying to adjust my left hand but I find myself applying too much pressure with my right arm.

      Like 1
      • Moyses Lopes
      • Classical Guitarist and Electroacoustic Interpreter
      • Moses
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Barney I got some photos, six to be more exact. They are a bit big to put in our discussion thread so I put them in a PDF. I hope you can get a good idea about how Guitarfift works. I think is possible to maintain a good position with the guitar, according to the SoG. The first photo is without the guitar, to see the chair height. About the Guitarlift: I like it, but sometimes I think it would be good to try another one. I'm living in Portugal and I couldn't find the Sagework in the European stores, just a similar one called ErgoPlay. If you have some questions about Guitarlift, be my guest!

      Like 2
      • Barney
      • Barney
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Moyses Lopes The photos are great and very helpful, thanks!!  Much appreciated!

      Is yours the full size GuitarLift? (Which model?)    How tall are you?  

      or is this the Half one?

      Thanks!!

      Like 1
      • Moyses Lopes
      • Classical Guitarist and Electroacoustic Interpreter
      • Moses
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Barney My Guitarlift is full size. I'm 1.70 m and haver never tried and half size Guitarlift. Best!

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      • Barney
      • Barney
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Moyses Lopes Okay, thanks Moyses!

      Like 1
    • Moyses Lopes Great photos Moyses, you're looking good! As for the Sagework I ordered one directly from them, they ship outside of US and they have EUR prices too.

      Like 1
      • don
      • don.2
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Blaise Laflamme I only ordered one directly from them to ship to Italy and I ended up paying additional 44 euros for the custom. So may have to take that into consideration. 

      Like 1
    • don you're right, customs are usually added later. I ordered my second one from a store here in Canada and the CAD price matched up with the USD price + exchange rate + customs, but I got it faster!

      Like
      • Moyses Lopes
      • Classical Guitarist and Electroacoustic Interpreter
      • Moses
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      don Good to know... It is possible that I would have the same problem. Thanks, Don!

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      • Moyses Lopes
      • Classical Guitarist and Electroacoustic Interpreter
      • Moses
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      don , you said: "I'm still trying to adjust my left hand but I find myself applying too much pressure with my right arm." You're adjusting your left hand but as an exercise, correct? Or you are thinking to play with the left thumb out of the guitar arm? Sorry for the question but I'm a bit confused about the goal of that. Thanks!

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      • don
      • don.2
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Moyses Lopes I was trying to use what I learn from Alfredo's livestream and the book to relax my left hand. I was exaggerating by removing my left thumb out in the video. 

       

      But I realize for me to play freely on my left hand, I tensed up more with my right arm (to keep the guitar in position). Does this make sense? Thanks!

      Like 1
      • Moyses Lopes
      • Classical Guitarist and Electroacoustic Interpreter
      • Moses
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      don I did this video trying to explain my point of view. I guess it's not against the Carlevaro theory, maybe Dale Needles  can clarify this for us. I hope it can be useful.

      Like 3
    • Moyses Lopes Excellent explanation of Carlevaro's sitting position in relation to the three points of contact in order to stabilize the guitar.  I have only a couple of things to add and clarify.  The right side of the body plays only a "neutral and passive role."  Additionally, "placing the left side of the chest against the guitar must be considered defective." Finally, as Moyes pointed out, the LH becomes a stabilizing point in certain situations when the right arm needs to lift off the guitar.  

      Like 1
    • Dale Needles Moyses Lopes Both great explanations and examples. As for the left side of the chest against the guitar, as Dale pointed out, it mostly happens when the fretboard approaches an horizontal position (parallel to the ground) and then we move away from mostly all SoG's concepts.

      Like 1
      • Moyses Lopes
      • Classical Guitarist and Electroacoustic Interpreter
      • Moses
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Thank you Dale Needles  and Blaise Laflamme , your contribution fills my gaps!
      don : All of these about vectors, forces, and compensation is for thinking WHY you are pressing unnecessarily the right arm against the guitar body. I have two hypotheses:
      First: you are putting much pressure on the fingerboard with your left hand. As a result, by the lever theory, you have an opposite force in the guitar body and compensate for this by pressing more your right arm.
      Second: You're pressing for another reason, like stress,  for example.
      Using your own words: Does this make sense? 🙂 Thank you!!

      Like
      • don
      • don.2
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Moyses Lopes Thank you so much! It is really helpful.  Really appreciate it.  I think I managed to identified some issues. Yes, I think I was definitely over pressing with my left hand hence compensating with my right arm. 

       

      First my guitar was a bit more to the left so any left hand pressure on the fretboard will require a bit more force on the right to compensate. I realized I needed less effort to press a note with the left hand when I shifted my guitar a bit more to the right. 

       

      Second, I think I was too conscious of playing without the thumb rather than using it as a guide which caused the over pressing of the left probably cos of unfamiliarity. 

       

      I shifted the guitar a bit to the right and rather not use the left hand thumb, i use it lightly as guide. Everything feels much more relax and stable now. 🙂

       

      Blaise Laflamme Dale Needles thank you for taking time to share your knowledge.

      Like 2
    • don One small suggestion on the barre, try to angle your left elbow a little more towards the left side of your body so that the LH index finger of the barre is pressing down more on its left side.  Alfredo demonstrates this in his last Tonebase workshop.  

      Like 2
      • Moyses Lopes
      • Classical Guitarist and Electroacoustic Interpreter
      • Moses
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      don have you taken a look at the Alfredo videos? There are 4 about sitting and 1 about placing the right arm. Maybe can be useful to help you to adjust your posture. The link is https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLS0PMnzYpZKF6mTZJytg3PLq-RlKzB1Zi

      Like 1
      • don
      • don.2
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Moyses Lopes Thanks I've not seen those. Will look at it. 

      Dale Needles Thanks! This is really helpful.

      Like
    • Barney
    • Barney
    • 8 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    Dale Needles Moyses Lopes Carlevaro mentions the term "Capotasto"  in some of the LH exercises instructions.

    In plain English, what does this mean?  Thanks!

    Like 1
      • Moyses Lopes
      • Classical Guitarist and Electroacoustic Interpreter
      • Moses
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Barney I think Dale is better suited than me to answer you, but "capotasto" is the barre or bar. In Spanish is 'cejilla' and in Portuguese is 'pestana'.  But   Dale Needles can tell us!

      Like
    • Moyses Lopes While I was thinking it was a Spanish word, it is actually Italian.  Capotasto means a contrivance to shorten the length of the strings.  It is also the word from which Capo is derived.  Carelevaro uses it for Barre. 

      Like 1
      • Moyses Lopes
      • Classical Guitarist and Electroacoustic Interpreter
      • Moses
      • 8 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      Barney I sent you a private message.

      Like
    • Barney
    • Barney
    • 7 mths ago
    • Reported - view

    Dale Needles Blaise Laflamme Moyses Lopes   Does anyone have a video showing Cuarderno 3 Ej. 24 performed correctly?  I'm looking at it and I'm not clear how on to play the rhythm correctly.  Also,  the previous LH exercises have a repetitive pattern.  I don't see it yet for Ej. 24...Is there one?  Thanks!!

    Like
    • Barney Hi Barney, I am unaware of any video demonstrations of Ej, 24, but it is part of my daily routine so I will try to make a video of it before the end of April.  As you probably realized, this is one of the more complex and difficult exercises in Cuaderno No. 3.  My suggestion is to wait a little bit before you jump into it and be sure that you have Ej 23 perfected.  Ej 23 is great prep for Ej 24.  I would also suggest moving on to additional exercises on Shifts by Displacement, Ej 50 - 68.  Once you have mastered these, I would go back to Ej 24 and also look at Ej 86 (Shifts by Octave Jumps).  These two exercises are my favorites and use both longitudinal and transversal shifts.  And, once you master these, I believe you will have gone through all the exercises in Cuaderno No 3.  Again, the key is enough correct repetitions so that you acquire the muscular memory to do these shifts without a lot of forethought.  I hope this helps.  

      Like 1
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