Week 2: From Barrios to Brouwer!

Greetings, everyone! We are thrilled to welcome you all to the Latin American Music Challenge! 😀🎉

In this exciting journey, we'll be immersing ourselves in the richly diverse and vibrant world of Latin American music, a world that's deeply interconnected with our beloved instrument💪

This challenge presents an opportunity to not only enhance our skills but also to appreciate the cultural richness and musical complexity that Latin American melodies bring. From the passionate rhythms of salsa to the poignant strains of the tango, we'll explore it all!

Please remember, we have an extensive category in our library dedicated to Latin American Repertoire. This library is a treasure trove of courses designed to provide deep insights and technical knowledge about various aspects of Latin American music. Make sure to make the most of it!

We are excited to kick-start this musical journey and we hope you are too. Let's dive in!

https://app.tonebase.co/guitar/library/repertoire/latin-american
 

🗓️ CHALLENGE TIMELINE

  • Challenge Start: Kick-Off on June 24th
  • Duration: June 24th - July 24th
  • Watch Party: July 24th, 10 am PST

🎼 ACTIVITIES

  1. Choose Your Piece: Select a new piece of music to work on. Share your choice in the thread below and inspire your fellow musicians!
  2. Video Submission: Submit a video of your practice this week. Highlight your favorite passage from the piece that showcases the origin of this piece!

🎸 GET INVOLVED

Let’s kick things off with enthusiasm! Share your progress, encourage others, and explore new musical horizons together. Can’t wait to see what everyone chooses!

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  • Anido - Barcarola (July 1)

    Here is an update on this piece. I have since changed the fingerings quite a bit. I think the balance of the voices is better now, but the melody still needs to come out of the texture more. My fingers still feel like they are fumbling around a lot, so much more practice is needed for fluency. I also want the dynamic changes to be more pronounced.

    Question for martin : In this Week Two, are we only allowed to post pieces by composers from Barrios to Brouwer alphabetically? If so, that seems like a very small range, and this posting by Anido is definitely off limits. 🙂

    Like 4
    • Eric Phillips Lovely! That harmonics section is so cool. Were the fingering choices you made all around achieving balance, or were some of them around comfort/playability? I think I've not advanced to making fingering changes for sounds (sometimes I do, but); I'm usually just trying to achieve left hand playability and to set up stronger preparations.

      Like 1
      • David Krupka
      • Amateur guitarist/lutenist
      • David_Krupka
      • 2 wk ago
      • Reported - view

      Eric Phillips This is coming along very nicely, Eric. I understand what you say about the melody not always emerging from the the thick texture, but I feel this is a fault more of the writing than the playing. In any event, I don't find it to be much of a problem - it's clear enough to the listener what the melody is. There is, though, one small thing you do throughout the piece that doesn't quite work for me. (I am not sure if it's deliberate, so I'll point it out.) In the final measure of many (though not all) of the phrases, you hold the initial eighth note for what seems to be a full quarter. (i.e. in mm 6, 10, 18, etc.) The notation does seem to imply some kind of pause (or separation) but I feel the meter is disturbed a little too much. You may feel differently, of course!

      Like 1
    • Eric Phillips beautiful Eric. The sound is lovely and, as David mentioned the melody shines clear enough to the listener. I think I would tend to separate it a bit more with my a-nail, but, the way you play it, without this naily sound, it’s just  gorgeous.

      Like 1
    • Spare Machine Thanks, Mark! I like the harmonics section too. It's probably the most difficult section for me to pull off, though. The score calls for some harmonics earlier (measures 13-14) but I find those practically impossible to play, so I am leaving them out.

      As for your question about fingering changes, I found it too hard to reply with just typed words, so I made a video. Hopefully it makes sense. Let me know if not.

      Like
    • David Krupka Thanks for the careful listening and feedback, David. I did know about the change in rhythm you observed. It was intentional. I actually was not doing that in my first posting of this piece, but then after listening to other interpretations on YT, it seemed almost everyone was doing this except for Edson Lopes. So, I thought I'd try it for a while to see if I like it. Right now, I have decided only to use that rhythmic change in one place - at the final cadence of the piece, just to make it more dramatic and interesting. That's what I did in the video below. If you have time, let me know what you think.

      Like
    • joosje Thanks, Joosje. Right now, I am experimenting with growing the nails back at least a bit. I am really missing being able to get a good sound without so much effort and concentration. I am hoping that I can keep my ring finger nail a bit short, perhaps giving me the option of playing notes with nail and flesh (like usual) or flesh alone. We'll see how it goes.

      Like
    • Eric Phillips  Thanks Eric for taking the time to make that video. This was such an eye opening on how to learn and study a piece of music. 👍 

      Like 1
  • Anido - Barcarola (July 3)

    Here is another update. I went back to a few of my original fingerings, but kept some of the changes from the last post. I also made some musical changes.

    Like 2
    • Eric Phillips Very beautiful and a lovely piece, reminds me a little Miguel Llobet's music. Anido was one of Llobet's disciples.  Also, I just got back in town and plan to join the challenge later this week. 

      Like 1
      • Jack Stewart
      • Retired
      • Jack_Stewart
      • 2 wk ago
      • Reported - view

      Eric Phillips You have made a great improvement over your already beautiful previous recording. The tempo is much better as is the presence of the melody. Impressive work.

      Like 1
    • Eric Phillips The sweet middle section sounded particularly sweet to me with this recording. That high doubled-octave climax of that sections sounded nice to my ear with the mirco "slapback"-sounding delay you put between the octaves.

       

      It's always a treat to hear you play. Thank you!

      Like 1
  • Hi, everyone, I tried Brouwer's Un dia de noviembre. Obviously, it's a very famous and popular piece. I'm not very happy with my current playing on this piece. Slurs and harmonics are my weak points that I need to work on. The B part of this piece is also challenging, especially my LH security is not there yet. I also need to improve the tone quality of the melody on the high E string. On the positive side, I have at least improved slightly my recording. Thanks for watching. i hope to post an improvement in the coming weeks.

    Like 2
    • Nijwm Bwiswmuthiary Very nice. This is sounding good. The second section needs a little work and as you wrote your harmonics, but overall you are making excellent progress with this beautiful piece. Have been able to watch the Tonebase interview with Brouwer where he discusses this piece? 

      Like
    • Nijwm Bwiswmuthiary There is always room for improvement in most things in the world. But, I found your rendition quite charming. The beauty of the big picture, to my ear, greatly outweighs the technical details. Thank you for sharing it! I've been listening to this one more recently, even though it's summer in Chicago (and not November), something about the wistfulness of it speaks to my summertime heart. 

      I hope you're staying cool in India!

      As a relatively newbie to the classical cannon. I watch a lot of tonebase videos that are not things I really intend to study (yet), just to hear people think aloud about the pieces and the techniques involved. My first exposure to this tune was from the tonebase video referenced by Dale in this thread. For easy reference, for anyone interested, I've linked the tonebase-related videos here (some of which I might dive into as a result of your playing this piece for us!).

      https://app.tonebase.co/guitar/courses/player/leo-brouwer-teaches-un-dia-de-noviembre-brouwer

      https://app.tonebase.co/guitar/courses/player/isaac-bustos-teaches-un-dia-de-noviembre-by-leo-brouwer?moduleSlug=isaac-bustos-teaches-un-dia-de-noviembre-by-leo-brouwer&t=1

      https://app.tonebase.co/guitar/live/player/interactive-class-isaac-bustos-noviembre

      https://app.tonebase.co/guitar/live/player/martin-zimny-un-dia-de-noviembre

      Like
    • Dale Needles Thank you Dale. Yes, I have watched Brouwer's interviews and other tonebase resources related to this piece. I still have just rudimentary knowledge on theoretical and musical aspects like harmonic structure, chord progression etc. But, I'm absorbing as much as I can from tonebase and watching fellow members here on the forum.

      Like
    • Spare Machine Thank you for the kind words. It's really encouraging for me. As for the weather here in India (I'm in the northeastern part of India), the weather has cooled down a bit, thanks to the monsoon rains. It's still warm and humid, making me long for the winter of November!

      I have learnt a lot from the resources you have listed here from Isaac Bustos, Martin Zimmy, Mircea Gogoncea (I miss his presence here in tonebase) and, of course, from maestro Brouwer himself.

      Like
      • Jack Stewart
      • Retired
      • Jack_Stewart
      • 11 days ago
      • Reported - view

      Nijwm Bwiswmuthiary That was great, Nijwm. I agree with Dale, I think this is coming along very well. Overall you have a wonderful feel for this piece. Your phrasing is very expressive.

      I understand that your current focus on the harmonics is trying to achieving clear tones. But while working on the harmonics, also think of the repeated harmonics as a musical phrase that leads us to the new section. 

      Like
    • Jack Stewart Thank you Jack. Your advice on using harmonics as the connecting phrase between the A section and B section is very pertinent and valuable. I'll definitely keep that in mind.

      Like
    • Nijwm Bwiswmuthiary  Great performance... I love  so much this piece. I hope to have the skill to learn it in a couple of years 🙂

      Like
    • Andre Bernier Thank you. I'm sure you'll be able to play it soon.

      Like
  • Anido – Barcarola (July 6)

    I might make this my final submission of this piece, as I am itching to move on (to what I am not yet sure).

    Like 2
    • Eric Phillips The opening bit in this version is so tender and controlled--it set a context for my ears for hearing the rest in a different way. And, you crushed the harmonics bit. Also, I love the 2 camera angles! So cool! Thank you!

      Like 1
    • Spare Machine Thanks, Mark. The camera angle changes are just a little trick to avoid having to do one good take from beginning to end.

      Like 1
      • Jack Stewart
      • Retired
      • Jack_Stewart
      • 11 days ago
      • Reported - view

      Eric Phillips Beautifully played, Eric. Pretty clever! - 2 camera angles to help facilitate splicing out mistakes (I assume).

      But then, I would need a lot more than 2 camera angles.

      Like 1
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