WEEK 3: El Canto de la Guitarra 🎶

Welcome to the Main Thread for the second week of our musical Journey to Spain!! This is the place to share submissions of the third week! 🔥


If you want to describe your process (optional), feel free to use the following template.

  • Things you found easy:
  • Things you found difficult:
  • (Optional): a video of you performing it!
  • (Optional:) questions

↓ HAPPY PRACTICING, HAPPY SHARING ↓

324replies Oldest first
  • Oldest first
  • Newest first
  • Active threads
  • Popular
  • Continuing on, here are the Theme & Variations 1-4 from Ponce's Variation on a Theme of Cabezón.  After this, there are two more variations and a Fughetta.  

    Like 4
    • Dale Needles beautiful rendition. Far from easy music. Too short. Looking forward to the continuation. 

      Like
      • Jack Stewart
      • Retired
      • Jack_Stewart
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      Dale Needles Another excellent continuation in your work on this piece. The variation in Major (#4) was so unexpected. I can't to hear how Ponce, and you, resolve that contrast. 

      Like
    • Dale Needles You are playing this so well, Dale! Did you say the original work by Cabezon is for organ? I must say, variations 2-4 sounds like organ to me, so big and resonant. What fantastic music and totally unknown to me prior to this. (I also love your pictures!)

      Like
      • Emmanull
      • Emma
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      Dale Needles beautiful!!! And the way you changed the tone in the second part… well done it is beautiful 

      Like
    • Emma Thanks! It is a lovely piece and fun to learn, and now on to Variations 5 & 6. 

      Like
    • Eric Phillips Thanks. Cabezon was an organist and Ponce also studied the organ. The original piece on which the theme is based has not been identified. Glad you like the photos, from a five week trip to Spain in the Spring of 2019. 

      Like
    • Jack Stewart Thanks. I agree that the A major Variation was unexpected and a great and beautiful contrast. Stay tuned to see how it resolves in Variation 5.  

      Like
    • Dale Needles beautifull music ! a pleasure to hear you!

      Like
  • Hello! I decided to record my first version of "Recuerdos de la Alhambra" by Francisco Tarrega.

    I really love this piece, it is one of the reasons why a started practicing again classical guitar.

    It conveys so well the melancholic and romantic sound that is often associated with Spanish guitar music.

    I apologize for the bad picture/sound quality. I'll have to ask some of you guys what you use to get those amazing videos and sound. Here, video and sound is from a smartphone.

     

    I am sure this piece is above my current skill level, but still wanted to give it a try. I've never studied tremolo formally, this was the piece I used to build up my tremolo technique.

    What I find easy:

    • Learning the whole piece by heart was pretty easy, it took only a week or so.
    • Left hand is not so terrible, only some passages I find hard, so I shall be kind of good there.

    What I find hard:

    • Breathing properly and staying relaxed, avoiding weird body movements.
    • Keeping the tremolo going well for long.
    • Increasing the speed. Here I'm slightly above 100 BMP per each PAMI, while a pro would be more like 130/140 BPM.
    • Keeping the AMI notes beautiful and singing like. Those should be more musical, while I am not able to make them stand out much from the bass notes. After a while they also get less precise.

      There are also some mistakes, but I could not record it again.
      This was my take 2 of the evening. I've been practicing this piece for a little more than 3 weeks.

      Any hints and comments are appreciated, thank you! 🙂
    Like 4
    • Stefano Good start in mastering the tremolo. Tremolo is one of those difficult techniques many of us struggle with.  Have you checked out Stephanie Jones' tremolo lesson on Tonebase?  I found it to be a very systematic way to improve one's tremolo. Check it out, if you haven't. 

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

      Stefano Very nice Stefano. You have a great start -much more than a start. I have made a few attempts at the Recuerdos but, alas, set it aside. Maybe someday. 

      There are several members working this, including the moderator, Martin. There are at least 2 lessons on it, Stephanie Jones, as Dale mentioned, and Scot Tenant. 

      Martin has also given various workshops on recording videos - he's a wizard at it in addition to be a great musician.

      Like 1
    • Stefano I’m so glad you joined in, Stefano! This is pretty impressive. It is one of those iconic pieces that I have tried a thousand times, but always have given up on, so I tip my hat to you. 🎩 As for advice for improving tremolo or your recordings, I defer to Dale and Jack above. Neither one of those topics is a strength of mine.

      Like 1
      • Wainull
      • Wai_Ng
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      Stefano wow, this is something I think I will never be able to play in my entire life. You can play the whole piece without looking at the score! Amazing!!

      Like 1
    •  Thanks to everyone!

      Indeed, I want to follow the course on tremolo by Stephanie Jones, it is on my watchlist!
      The key for me is practicing slowly and trying to keep the right hand relaxed, but it is not easy at all! 
      Also, trying to make small movements while still producing sound.
      I hope in that course I'll find great advice!

      I will also look for the recording lessons by Martin and the others. First thing, I'll need to buy a decent microphone and webcam, which might be good also for work calls. xD

      Cheers!
       

      Like 1
      • Emmanull
      • Emma
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      Stefano you are doing great. I would follow Martin’s advice to not increase speed until the tremolo is perfect. Practice slow to play fast they say 👨‍🎓

      Like 1
      • Olli
      • Mr. Pizza
      • Saitenzwirbler
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      Stefano Dear Stefano, never met you before - hearty welcome to tonebase ❤️ you did a good job on playing tremolo - it is so hard work .... bringing it up to perfection will take a long time !!! Don't give up 😉

      Like 1
      • Derek
      • Derek
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      Stefano that's really good Stefano. I find that you have to keep practising tremolo. Once I stop for a few weeks It's almost as if I'm starting again!

      Like 1
      • Steve Pederson
      • The Journey is My Destination!
      • Steve_Pederson
      • 2 yrs ago
      • Reported - view

      Stefano this is absolutely fantastic!!! Congratulations! You're doing exactly what you need to do - play it slowly. You played the whole piece perfectly, just at a little slower speed. Everybody talks about how difficult tremolo is, but there are some crazy chords and chord changes in that piece as well, which you didn't miss a beat on. You nailed this, and in no time I believe you'll have it concert-ready. 

      Like
    • Stefano welcome to the tremolo club Stefano!! I am a fanatic of this effect in such an amount of really beautifull pieces (Recuerdos, Barrios, etc). I find your tremolo sounds sometimes very clear and even. It is already very good that you don't touch the wrong chords (like I do...jajaja) and your melody is bright even with your smartphone recording. The course of Stephnie has helped me a lot specially the consistence exercise, helping me also to place the angle of the RH. I have a practice diary of Recuerdos de la Alhambra...I want to record there something in these next days. Thanks for sharing.

      Like
  • I was wondering why Luis de Milan was not mentioned on the list, Martin? Not even one Tonebase lesson. Though his name is 'de Milan', he was really Spanish. And his pavanas are wonderful to study, for balance of voices, legato chords. It seems so easy, but really needs attention and practice.

    I have been watching again the recording sessions you gave last year. It's still very puzzling for me, but I try to get control over the Reaper options. I worked out my last year's recording of the first Pavana. This isnt really about Canto, I'm afraid, but, since no one posted any of Milan's works I decided to submit this recording, made in january 2021 with my Samson meteorUSB mic into Reaper. You may be able to comment on the sound editing.

    I will from now on work with the Focusrite and 2 condenser mics. 

    • joosje I love that Pavana and was also wondering why no one was playing Luis de Milan, but then I wasn't either.  In any case, a lovely rendition and glad you posted it.  Are you using Carlevaro's fingering for this?  

      Like 1
    • Dale Needles thank you Dale. Yes it’s such refined music. I play all six of these pavanas, and always come back to them from time to time. I think I worked out my own version for this one. I’d have to check the Carlevaro. He has great insights.

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

      joosje Very nice, Joosje - lovely phrasing! I often see the composer referred to simply as Luys Milan, without the 'de'; apparently both forms are possible. As you say, he was certainly Spanish. Have you played any of his fantasias? These are interesting, and quite different in style from the work of other vihuelists of the time.

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

      joosje That was wonderful Joosje. I remember his Pavanas from when I was first learning guitar. Because of that I always relegated them to beginner fluff. Hearing you play this so majestically I have to completely re-evaluate my perception of them. This is so elegant. (BTW, I 'played' one of Milan's Pavanas at afriend's wedding back then. I almost got thru 2 measures before I completely forgot everything. I just sat there and played the 2 opening chords over and over. It was excruciating. This may have colored my attitude towards Milan.)

      Thanks very much for helping me overcome my misconception of his work.

      Like 1
Like Follow
  • 2 yrs agoLast active
  • 324Replies
  • 406Views
  • 21 Following

Home

View all topics