D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

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Laura Staats

Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by Laura Staats » Tue Jan 28, 2014 7:06 pm

William and Halil, and Stefan,
These are very high quality performances all around. I am not really finding much to critique. I am curious about how long everyone has been playing guitar. I have been playing music a very long time, but I tend to skip around to many different instruments and genres, so I have never really progressed in one area as much as I would like. I am extremely impressed if you are all demonstrating this level of musicianship in your second year playing guitar!

I purposefully played Sauteuse with a bit of a swing because I did not like how disjointed the rhythm in the example felt. It probably isn't the way it was intended to go, but I prefer it this way. I think I hit a wrong note at the end of Andantino, but I prefer to think of it as "improv". :wink:
[media]https://youtu.be/watch?v=QL9Ha2PdQBA[/media]

WilliamTee

Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by WilliamTee » Wed Jan 29, 2014 1:21 am

Hi Laura,
Welcome to the forum!
:bravo: Sounds great on both pieces.

It is quite interesting the way you interpret the music. I know its different from the rest. I can't tell exactly how different but I know you played both quite almost the same way in terms of interpretation.
The way you handle the guitar is also different. I can see your LH thumb all the way to the knuckle and yet you are quite comfortable with it. I can't play with my thumb protruded far that much.

Laura Staats

Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by Laura Staats » Wed Jan 29, 2014 2:26 am

Thanks William. That was an interesting observation about my left thumb. I do know that the left hand fingering of certain pieces requires that I shift my thumb more to the middle of the back of the guitar neck, but these pieces didn't necessitate that shift. I guess I am just used to moving my thumb as needed. When I play out of first position, notes on the lower strings, and bar chords, I definitely have to shift my thumb considerably from what I am doing in this video.

Beatriz Martin

Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by Beatriz Martin » Wed Jan 29, 2014 3:33 am

Hi Laura,
Your playing is outstanding and please, don't take me wrong for what I am going to say. I am new in classical guitar, this is indeed my second year, so my knowledge is nothing compared to yours.
Since i started to follow these lessons, I have gathered that classical guitar has a bunch of rules that we need to follow whether we agree or not, or whether we feel more or less comfortable with them. To me one of these rules (if I can call it that way) is to always put your left thumb behind the neck, you should not show your left hand thumb at all in any classical guitar composition. So, anyone, please correct me if I am wrong.
Another thing I don't understand is why you have changed the rhythm, isn't that deviating from the intended written composition? ...Now, I wish I could do what you have done, it didn't occur to me to change anything, but just follow delcamp's playing. I feel I have to do things in a certain way and if I don't follow that way I am not playing well cg.
Well, now is others' turns to give their opinion in regards to what I said.

Laura Staats

Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by Laura Staats » Wed Jan 29, 2014 6:50 am

Hi Beatriz,
As far as the thumb goes, I think a lot of beginners have a problem where they wrap their hand rather rigidly around the neck of the guitar(showing the thumb), which severely limits being able to move the hand into position for more difficult fingerings, especially as the player progresses. In addition, for many fingerings it would be impossible for the finger tips to approach the strings at the correct angle with the thumb extended so far. It would make sense that many teachers would stress the importance of not wrapping the thumb around the neck, and especially not gripping it, because in many instances it would hinder playing ability. I went back and watched my video of Malaguena in lesson 2 because I remembered having to shift my thumb position around quite a bit for that song. Perhaps I am creating more work for myself by shifting my thumb more than necessary, but I would think that the main goal is keeping the left hand, including the thumb, relaxed enough to keep shifting into various positions to facilitate fingering all over the fretboard. I did find an article in a quick google search that seems to support this idea:

http://www.nickcutroneo.com/using-the-l ... -the-thumb
"However, there are plenty of exceptions to the rule, so much so, that the rule itself becomes obsolete. As I explained in the previous Using The Left Hand article, the thumb moves vertically on the neck as the left hand crosses the different strings. In this case, the thumb staying in the middle behind the neck doesn’t work. You have to move the thumb to keep the same angle and curvature of the fingers from string to string. Which means at some point, the thumb may be peeking itself over the neck of the guitar. As long as you aren’t grasping with the thumb, having the thumb peek over is ok. A great example of this is John Williams."

I checked out a couple John Williams videos on youtube and definitely saw his thumb peeking around the guitar at times during his playing.

As far as deviating from the rhythm in this way, I am guessing this would probably be frowned upon in strict classical playing, which is why I pointed out that I took some liberties with my interpretation. I am still trying to get my head wrapped around when it is appropriate to use generous amounts of rubato. To me, the rhythmic interpretation of our example version deviated as far from the written music as my version. I was so fascinated by how much more I liked the song with the swing feel that I decided to play it that way for my submission.

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Marko Räsänen
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Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by Marko Räsänen » Wed Jan 29, 2014 7:55 am

Hi Laura,

I agree with Nick's writing, but in my opinion the point he is making is that you shouldn't obsess about the thumb never peeking from behind the guitar neck. However you have a habit of permanently keeping the thumb on top of the neck (you're not moving it vertically along as your fingers move on the strings). You'll get away with that as long as the pieces are simple, use 1st position exclusively (no position shifts), there are no difficult stretches, no fast scale runs, trilling or slurring. But all that is soon about to change. Many of the techniques you will be needing simply won't work if you keep your left hand like that, so you need to change it sooner or later. It makes sense to do it sooner, so that you don't end up in the situation where you're expected to master a difficult new technique and relearn basic technique at the same time.

It is clear to me that you have experience playing acoustic and/or electric guitar, so the left hand stuff in D02 will most likely feel very easy for you. Trust me when I say, when you get to the last lessons of D03 and onwards, you won't feel that way anymore. My point is, the "thumb-behind-the-neck" rule exists for a reason, and even (as with any rules) you can break the rule once you know what you're doing (and what you're doing it for), you need to learn to walk properly if you're going to learn how to run fast, so to speak.
Laura Staats wrote:As far as deviating from the rhythm in this way, I am guessing this would probably be frowned upon in strict classical playing, which is why I pointed out that I took some liberties with my interpretation. I am still trying to get my head wrapped around when it is appropriate to use generous amounts of rubato. To me, the rhythmic interpretation of our example version deviated as far from the written music as my version. I was so fascinated by how much more I liked the song with the swing feel that I decided to play it that way for my submission.
There is nothing wrong in experimenting with interpretation. Classical guitar playing has certain rules of aesthetics (performance practice, if you will), and how you're 'allowed' to interpret pieces also depends on which era (renaissance, baroque, classical, romantic, modern) is in question. The only way to really learn this stuff is to listen to a lot of CG playing. But sometimes you just want to do a piece in certain way, even when you know it's 'wrong', and I don't see that as a problem as long as you're aware that you're deviating from the standard practice.

Just my opinion... :bye:
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Goran Penic
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Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by Goran Penic » Wed Jan 29, 2014 1:24 pm

I completely agree with all that are written by Beatriz and Mark.
I think it's a lot easier (painlessly) initially trying to change all the wrong learned, but this even more intensify, and then when the shortcomings of this style (now deeply ingrained) come to light and become an obstacle to further progress. Then the man instead of going further has to go back to try to correct the mistakes learned. Look at the beginning of the video. Try the same way to play it, but you always play together under an empty string. I do not think you're going to an empty string below to get a pure tone because it covers your index finger. If you can accomplish that with your fingertips, you can press string vertically, then you can wrap the thumb three times around the neck of the guitar, but if not then it should go down a little lower. Better prevent than to cure - says one proverb by us.
This should not be understood as an attack of which should defend, it's just that, for example, I'm still struggling with my wrong habits, and I began to struggle in the beginning (when I was on the second level - I skipped the first (maybe I should not even then I played guitar for 20 years)). With remark that I have never defend or justified my bad habits, but I have tried to become aware and identify and change.
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CarlWestman
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Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by CarlWestman » Thu Jan 30, 2014 12:09 am

Laura,

I enjoyed your submissions, but it is harder to evaluate them if the rhythm (or a note here or there) is changed. I suppose I can say you were consistent. Even your mistake in Andantino was musical!

There was something in the middle section of Sauteuse which you may have missed - as have I - I realized I've been practicing wrong until now. As in Andantino, there's a B/D, G, B/D part. See the 2nd to last measure of the second line. In Andantino, you play B/D, G, B/D, G. But in this one, it goes B/D, G, B/D, B. I only noticed after listening to the Delcamp version a few times and realizing it sounded slightly different than the way I had been playing it. So I went back to the sheet music and noticed that subtle difference. So now I have to get that into muscle memory - and hope it doesn't sabotage my muscle memory for Andantino.

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CarlWestman
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Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by CarlWestman » Thu Jan 30, 2014 1:40 am

Stefan,

Lovely to listen to as usual. The variations in tempo - again, I just really don't know how to judge the performance when significant liberties are taken with the tempo. How do I know what was meant, versus what was played? All I can do is try to figure out if the right notes are played. It would be my preference that those who wish to depart from the written music post both the "as written" and "my variation" versions. That way the critiques can be "sounds right" or "I think you hesitated / hit a wrong note here" for the first and and "I like/don't like that variation" for the second. Just my opinion, but it's harder to critique such performances - for, on what basis can you place the critique? I do realize that rubato etc is not an either/or category - it is a continuum of variation of tone, tempo, etc. I understand that. I just don't know how to critique it when the tempo varies this much from the written music.

Carl

Stefan Srećković

Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by Stefan Srećković » Thu Jan 30, 2014 9:02 pm

Laura, clean renditions overall though I can't say I dug your alternation of rhythm. I don't see it being done too often in CG, and for a good reason. It doesn't sound all too appealing (at least for my own taste). I still think of Milos Karadaglic and his horrendous rendition of Villa Lobos prelude 1, it was very painful to listen.

Thanks Carl! Don't ever hesitate in putting your thoughts on the table, I got your point clear. I too am not sure where I'm going with rubato, but playing dead on the beat very boring very fast :/ How are your lesson 06 pieces coming along?

Laura Staats

Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by Laura Staats » Thu Jan 30, 2014 10:15 pm

Carl,
Regarding that B in the second line of Sauteuse, I did miss that. Thanks for catching that. I circled it on my sheet music for future reference.

The discussion around the use of rubato is quite interesting. Is there a reference somewhere on the forum that gives historical perspective on which composers, time periods, and types of compositions were intended to be played with rubato, ornamentation, and/or improvisation? I am currently trying to catch up on lesson 3, where Mr. Delcamp uses ornamentation on his example of Atoye(1600). He adds generous amounts of rubato in other examples. Is it as simple as knowing which era( Medieval, Renaissanace, Baroque, Classical, Romantic) the piece comes from?

Stefan,
I played Sauteuse in that manner specifically because it was more appealing to my personal taste than the way Mr. Delcamp played it. His version sounded to me like every time he got going, he put the brakes on, making it feel very disjointed. Interestingly enough, I did enjoy your use of rubato on that piece. I thought you did a good job of emulating Mr. Delcamp's example, while at the same time toning down the abruptness of the tempo changes. I thought it sounded much more musical, and it actually helped me appreciate the effect Mr. Delcamp was going for.

As far as the discussion on the thumb showing, I will definitely be observing to see if this is hindering my playing. I notice that I do it most often on basic chord shapes in the first position, that feel very automatic to my left hand after years of playing. I naturally shift the thumb to the back of the neck as required for more difficult fingering.

Beatriz Martin

Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by Beatriz Martin » Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:54 pm

Here are my videos for lesson 6, I enjoyed learning and playing both pieces. I don't enjoy doing slurs, I hope I don't have to use those any soon in a piece. Thanks for watching and for comments. :)

[media]https://youtu.be/lYQSozOzF_A[/media]
[media]https://youtu.be/kN3mucZb9rI[/media]
[media]https://youtu.be/UYI8yUfhjTI[/media]

Laura Staats

Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by Laura Staats » Fri Jan 31, 2014 1:53 am

Hi Bea,
Both pieces sounded really nice. It sounds like you worked very hard on them. You played Sauteuse at a pretty fast and even tempo, and I thought it sounded good that way. Once again, the main feedback I have is continuing to keep working on playing more legato. On the slurs, I would work on making the note durations more even by playing with a metronome.

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Goran Penic
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Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by Goran Penic » Fri Jan 31, 2014 7:48 am

:bravo: Bea. Very good, confident (except slurs).

All I can do is repeat what has already been written by Laura. More legato especially at transitions. Slow slurs, pick up a camera that we can see your left hand.
:bye:
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Stefan Srećković

Re: D02 Classical guitar lesson 06

Post by Stefan Srećković » Fri Jan 31, 2014 8:00 am

I concur, definitely work on legato separately i.e. tying two notes seamlessly. Same goes for slurs, it needs more consistency in tempo. :bye:

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