ContrerasMad wrote: ↑
Wed Apr 04, 2018 5:51 pm
A really good explanation Michael. Thank you for taking the time out to explain from your perspective. I can actually understand from where you are coming from as, although nowhere on the same level as yourself, there are times when I am in the middle of a section, my mind goes completely blank and I just watch the fingers carry on and take me through it note perfect. The body never ceases to amaze me! I just now need for me to be able to go and get a cup of tea and let the fingers carry on through the whole of La Catedral on their own
Looks like I just have to knuckle down to it and learn each piece, section by section, until they all fall together. When I come to think about it, it's actually reminiscent of my Martial Arts days with the 'patterns' I used to perform. Being at a relatively senior level I had a total of 705 consecutive movements to perform at one of the last grading exams I was practicing for. As an outsider that would probably at first appear to be an impossible task for anyone to remember, but it took me 15 years of learning each section by section to finally be able to perform them successfully.
So there's hope for me on the guitar yet!
Of course, I'm glad to help! Coincidentally, I used to do taekwondo as a kid and got to 1st Dan black belt, before choosing between guitar and taekwondo. I think the life with less getting kicked in the head appealed to me more...! The patterns are a very good comparison though, if you can memorise those you can memorise a piece, although the fineness of the movements and the instant feedback with sound that you get in music make it a slightly different ball game.
And the bit you're talking about with your mind going blank is a feeling I know very well, thinking 'if I mess up here I have no idea where I am or how to get back in...' This, I think, is the source of some of the larger memory slips I've seen and experienced in performance, but mercifully it hasn't happened in quite a long time. The more layers of memory you can add to your learning of a piece, the less susceptible to slips you are. The easiest one is repetition to acquire muscle memory, however, knowing the structure of the piece, the chord progressions all help.
Something that is helping me a lot now is knowing knowing what positions my fingers are in at specific moments. So for example, knowing when I'm planting fingers for an arpeggio or when I'm resting my thumb on a bass string, this happens pretty regularly so if you do forget something you have a reference point coming up to reset and get back onto the right track.
Anyway, hope that helps more, and enjoy your classical guitar journey!