Well here’s the whole boring story (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2058142/Amanda-Knox-falls-guitar-man-James-Terrano-returns-normal-life.html)
Category Archives: Classical Guitar
“There was this very old guitar teacher who had an open mind to accept me to bring my electric guitar to the [classical guitar] lesson.” Here
These kids are great but I just wonder, this being N Korea after all, what kind of unusual discipline lies behind their practice regimen. Story here.
On Greek guitarist Smaro Gregoriado’s new album, Reinventing Guitar: “…The album features a mixture of traditional guitar pieces, all craftily arranged by Gregoriadou, as well as original works penned by the Grecian guitarist. All of the pieces are performed on instruments built by the modern luthier Yorgos Kertsopoulos, guitars that are designed to not only evoke new sounds from the guitar, but to greatly expand the range and harmonic possibilities of the instrument…” Article’interview here (from Guitar International). This link has some pics of some pretty radical designed classical style guitars
Duo: Chinese pipa (played by Liu Fang) and classical guitar (Michael O’Toole).
I’m generally not a big fan of Eastern music but the combination here is beautifully haunting. According to the video info it’s is a transcription basesd on Philip Glass’s composition for string quartet.
“…Mr. Assad, 57, is half of what critics consider the world’s leading classical guitar duo, with his brother Odair. He almost won a third Latin Grammy in the ceremonies held Nov. 11; he was nominated twice for Contemporary Classical Composition. The Washington Post suggested that the brothers might be “the best two-guitar team in existence, maybe even in history…” Here.
The brothers in younger days.
This is the stuff that gives performers nightmares: what happens to your career when your hand is injured or some medical condition, sometimes even a minor one, reduces your normally superb hand control to something a lot less than it was at its peak. Well about ten years ago this nightmare came true for world-renowned classical guitarist Liona Boyd. One of her fingers developed a nerve condition which gradually ruled out a concert career. “…I’ve worn out the neuroreceptors that control the fingers,” she explains. “With me, it was mostly the one finger, the one you need for arpeggios…” Result? Today Ms Boyd is a folk singer who, along with performing song styles ranging from Joan Baez and other music from the sixties, to New Age type compositions, and in accompaniment uses a regular strumming technique, which is to say she uses a pick. Read more here (“Liona Boyd Sings a New Song”).
Below is Liona Byrd with a her singing partner Srdjan Givoje. She’s not using a pick here though; evidently she’s back to fingerstyle to some extent. I’ve seen several of her singing videos on Youtube; though she has a really beautiful voice, some of her facial gestures are overly dramatic, stagy.
Note: As far as a bad finger goes here’s some advice (and I have no idea whether or not it’s sound)
It’s no secret, in order for the guitar to more effectively and, let’s face it, commercially, compete for the ever changing tastes of concert audiences, it has to experiment with as many facets of composition as possible, and according to some, like concert guitarist Flavio Sala, in this interview with Guitar International, for example, that includes renditions of pop and other genres and rhythms of music (by the way, Sala also talks about the touchy subject of using amplification). Well, anyway, here’s a quote from Sala stating the crux of the matter: “I spent a lot of time practicing and playing classical repertoire in my concerts and tours, but suddenly I realized that each place has its functional repertoire. I saw quite well known guitarists playing Villa-Lobos Studies and Brouwer compositions in a popular party like they were in the Carnegie Hall. That was just ridiculous…Guitarists should not close their eyes and live their lives as if the traditional classical guitar repertoire is the best in the world. Come on, the world is full of beautiful music. We just need to open our minds, discover it and share it with people…” I guess he’s saying, Loosen up.
I’m surprised how many people think that the classical guitar rep consists only of romantic Spanish or 18th century Western European (Bach, Mozart) transcriptions, or that it that the apex of its modern compositions stopped with H. Villa-Lobos; here’s an example of the wide selection offered by composers of today. For example, this is Saudade #3 by the French composer-guitarist Roland Dyens. It is played here by the great Japanese guitarist Kaori Muraji.
Below is another Dyens piece, played by Meng Su, Yameng Wang, Chen Shanshan ,Li Jie
There’s nothing quite like a classical guitar with classical voice. Here we have the exquisite classical guitarist from Japan, Kaori Muraji along with German tenor Jan Kobow. Here’s Kaori in a solo, playing Recuerdos de la Alhambra; and here she is with orchestra, playing Concierto de Aranjuez (Adagio movement). Just type her name in Youtube and you’ll get a lot more performances.
Monica Esparza–this is the first female guitar-maker I’ve come across, though I’m sure there’s more. They seem like first rate instruments. “I create the elegance of the “V-Joint” neck, as employed by Hauser and Romanillos, to add to the craftsmanship and esthetic beauty of the instrument. I finish the instruments with the hand rubbed French polish to bring out the beauty and natural tones of the guitar.” Here’s her website, where the quote was taken.
“…in his heyday he was an incredible virtuoso and celebrity musician with millions of fans worldwide, including other top-tier musicians, painters, poets, and even heads of state…” Read this article here (Acoustic Guitar Magazine).
Meng Su and Yameng Wang: “The big problem with some guitarists is that they haven’t practiced with the metronome, so their time, their rhythm, is not quite right…” Read this article here (Acoustic Guitar Magazine). Note: the link has an audio section featuring the duo playing various selections; there’s also a description of the kind of guitars and strings they use.
Related: for classical guitarists: Giuliani studies lesson. Here (Acoustic Guitar Magizine).
Parkening and Brandon
Note: Christopher Parkening master class in Malibu, CA in a couple of weeks (free audience admission). Here.
“…picking up classical guitar is a natural progression from playing other genres of music, like rock.”Music is great because there is never a point you get to in which you can’t learn anymore,” Jenkins said. “Especially on the guitar, which is another reason I play. You can literally play any style of music…” Here.
“This is the beginning of “The Studies of Fernando Sor,” the first story in _The Doctrine of Affections_, a collection of short stories on musical themes (Freehand Books). Here.
“… This video uses “harmonic coloring,” in which each pitch class (C, C-sharp, D, etc.) is a different color, with the colors being assigned according to the circle of fifths…” In short, “the circle of fifths is a way to arrange keys to show how closely they are related to each other”. More info from the above bideo: here. Also see the Music Animation Machine and Smalins Youtube Channel.
Amazing young player from otherwise grim North Korea.
“Aquiles Valdez Ortiz, whose popular classical guitar lessons inspired generations of borderland musicians, died Monday night of injuries received in a Juárez assault in late May. He was 77 years old. The musician fell victim of ongoing attacks in the city torn by violence. Family members said robbers hit him in the head on May 26 while they were trying to steal his vehicle. He spent 12 days in a hospital before he died… Valdez’s musical career included playing soundtracks for Mexican films, performing with symphony orchestras and recording albums featuring his own arrangements of classical pieces…” Read rest of article here.
“One of the names that has risen to the top of this list of young virtuoso guitarists in recent years is D.C. based Matt Palmer. Possessing enough technique for three guitarists, as well as a heightened sense of musicality and emotion, Palmer has been turning heads as he criss-crosses the nation’s concert halls. A full-time performer, Palmer has recently released his debut album, Un Tiempo Fue Italica Famosa to great praise from critics and fans alike. The album is a reflection of Palmer’s current touring program and is a showcase for his dazzling chops, gripping emotional approach and his diverse musical tastes…” Read rest of article and interview with Matt Palmer here.
“…Each day, loads of individuals launch their trip on the way to master beginners guitar. This musical device has occupied and continues on conquering the hearts of tens of millions of people in each part of the globe. Why is guitar so popular? In fact, there are endless explanations to this immense reputation…” Here.
This is by far the best instruction video I’ve seen on the subject. Nice closeups.
Yes, there is such a thing as classical guitar, and no, it is not the boring version of modern guitar. Ask any person on the street whether he’s heard of John Williams (one of the most respected contemporary classical guitarists), and he’ll probably mention the guy that wrote the score for “Harry Potter,” “E.T.” and “Jurassic Park.” That’s right, there are two John Williams. Classical guitar is about as well known and as well understood as Olympic curling, which is to say almost not at all. It is more than a style of guitar. It’s what gave rise to guitar itself, a long-lived forefather that’s still around centuries later. Read article here.
Geeez…I inadvertently came across my old classic guitar site during a classical guitar search on Google. I had completely forgot about it. The last entry was in June 2007. now if I could only remember the password or even the email address I used I could freshen it up a bit (yeah, alas, my mind is going…)