Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

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Paul Cezanne
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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by Paul Cezanne » Sun Feb 03, 2019 5:27 pm

Mark Clifton-Gaultier wrote:
Sun Feb 03, 2019 11:51 am
You don't have to move your hand at all - you overlooked the fact that the arrangement begins in fifth position.
Oh!

Yes, I missed that. I saw the second note, the C, being indicated to be played by the first finger, and so I naturally assumed it would be played on the 2nd string. (Which really had me puzzled, the running up and down the neck was pointless.)

I just picked up my guitar for a few minutes and playing the C on the third string, with the first finger, is completely natural!

So thanks! This is why I love this forum.

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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by Paul Cezanne » Sun Feb 03, 2019 5:32 pm

]BTW, I'm really enjoying the discussion about whether or not Bach should be played and how it should be played, but there is a great discussion, here on delcamp, where that is more appropriate. I'd like to keep this thread for playing advice, how to play. And yes, I guess that does include discussion of Campanella (which I knew of) and style brisé which I had not heard of. So yeah, there's a fine line here...

See Cann I be the Grinch and say Bach and guitar don't mix... for that discussion.

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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by soltirefa » Sun Feb 03, 2019 5:37 pm

This woman says she made her own transcription and only used Yates' as a reference, but to me it sounds about 99% Yates.


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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by Rasqeo » Sun Feb 03, 2019 5:42 pm

Mark Clifton-Gaultier wrote:
Sun Feb 03, 2019 4:40 pm
Rasqeo wrote:Bit harsh that in my opinion.
That was me holding back.
Rasqeo wrote:Presumably the reason some players use a Campanella is simply because it sounds so good on the guitar and I would have to agree.
If you feel that's a good enough reason to indulge in campanella then fine - an ear-tickling gimmick may well catch the attention and, as you say, taste inevitably plays its part in all of our fingering decisions.
Isn’t tremolo a gimmick?

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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by Crofty » Sun Feb 03, 2019 5:53 pm

The way Stanley Y shows fingering is very poor in my view. Jack Duarte discussed formalising this decades ago.

What I want to know when sight reading is position, not which finger to use [unless it doesn't fit in with what one might expect in any given position].

With the point Mark made, a simple roman numeral giving the position would have solved any misunderstanding.

On a more general level I agree with Mark about campanella: it has it's relevance in some music and can be very effective but, in my view, isn't necessary and doesn't work for this prelude - but each to their own.

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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by Rasqeo » Sun Feb 03, 2019 5:57 pm

soltirefa wrote:
Sun Feb 03, 2019 5:37 pm
This woman says she made her own transcription and only used Yates' as a reference, but to me it sounds about 99% Yates.

God forbid, and she’s playing a SMALLMAN!!

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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by Hotsoup » Sun Feb 03, 2019 6:12 pm

You can just FEEL Bach's disapproving glare

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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by celestemcc » Sun Feb 03, 2019 9:25 pm

And what's wrong with a stretch goal? This seems to be a common theme, that I shouldn't even be attempting this. I read that same warning in the thread I referenced above. I'm really puzzled by that.
Stretch goals are fine: it's great to think ahead and aspire. But you're 2 months into a very difficult instrument. It's not to put you down that you're being advised against this piece. It really is going to take a long time, and you may find it frustrating. Not because you lack talent or ability, but it takes a certain amount of technical facility to play Bach... which takes practice, which takes time. Even trying a little bit of the piece at a time may frustrate you, when there are easier ways to learn the question you're asking. At the point you tackle Bach (or any piece at this level) you're going to need a very solid technical facility in both hands, and solid knowledge of the fingerboard. Remember all Bach, on guitar, is transcribed. It just doesn't fall as easily under the fingers as does music written specifically for guitar (and not all of that is easy to play). It's difficult to accept, especially for adult beginners, that some pieces are just best left alone for a while (we have *all* been there).

Find a "stretch goal" that is a piece written for guitar, one that isn't quite so ambitious. Occasionally do revisit the Bach briefly. Bit by bit it will be easier. Use it as a measure of progress -- but not your only measure. Most important for the moment is to enjoy the process of learning and the pieces you can do now. You will get there eventually.
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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by Mark Clifton-Gaultier » Mon Feb 04, 2019 2:47 pm

Rasqeo wrote: Presumably the reason some players use a Campanella is simply because it sounds so good on the guitar and I would have to agree.
Mark Clifton-Gaultier wrote:If you feel that's a good enough reason to indulge in campanella then fine - an ear-tickling gimmick may well catch the attention and, as you say, taste inevitably plays its part in all of our fingering decisions.
Isn’t tremolo a gimmick?
Hi Rasqueo - I will subscribe to the idea that any technique not employed toward a musical purpose could be a gimmick and indeed, "gimmickry" may be justifiably used simply for the purpose of fun or dazzling technical display.

We find venerable examples of the latter in the work of e.g. Sanz (slur passages and campanella), Sor (left hand alone), Legnani (only one fretting hand finger) and many, many other instances - even two playing upon one lute, all in the name of entertainment, showmanship. No doubt the occasional tremolo variation might have been conceived in a similar vein.

What we are observing in the particular Bach example referenced by the O.P. however is rather different - a more "scholarly" edition in which the author himself presents certain elements as, "essential to a full understanding of the arranging process and the meaningful performance of the music."

For the sake of brevity I will avoid analytical discussion regarding the nature of the "cello suites" - suffice to say that in this instance a campanella style execution does absolutely nothing to serve a meaningful performance, instead rather undermining the motific and directional power of the original line.

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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by Conall » Mon Feb 04, 2019 4:44 pm

Getting back to the OP:

The very fact that in this short thread there is already disagreement among experienced players as to how to approach this prelude shows that jumping in at the deep end with a difficult piece by Bach is probably not the wisest thing to do at your stage of learning.

Add further disagreement about which is the best arrangement for guitar of this prelude & you can begin to see why it's a bit of a hot potato! Personally (with respect) I'm not at all a fan of Yates' arrangements of these suites (I have them) but I guess that shouldn't matter to you.

So by all means have a go if Bach inspires you to practise but don't expect a lot of agreement among us guitarists (or musicians in general)!

But at the very least it seems you need to understand some basic principles of fingering before attempting this prelude.

Good luck either way.

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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by Rasqeo » Mon Feb 04, 2019 6:48 pm

Mark Clifton-Gaultier wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 2:47 pm
Rasqeo wrote: Presumably the reason some players use a Campanella is simply because it sounds so good on the guitar and I would have to agree.
Mark Clifton-Gaultier wrote:If you feel that's a good enough reason to indulge in campanella then fine - an ear-tickling gimmick may well catch the attention and, as you say, taste inevitably plays its part in all of our fingering decisions.
Isn’t tremolo a gimmick?
Hi Rasqueo - I will subscribe to the idea that any technique not employed toward a musical purpose could be a gimmick and indeed, "gimmickry" may be justifiably used simply for the purpose of fun or dazzling technical display.

We find venerable examples of the latter in the work of e.g. Sanz (slur passages and campanella), Sor (left hand alone), Legnani (only one fretting hand finger) and many, many other instances - even two playing upon one lute, all in the name of entertainment, showmanship. No doubt the occasional tremolo variation might have been conceived in a similar vein.

What we are observing in the particular Bach example referenced by the O.P. however is rather different - a more "scholarly" edition in which the author himself presents certain elements as, "essential to a full understanding of the arranging process and the meaningful performance of the music."

For the sake of brevity I will avoid analytical discussion regarding the nature of the "cello suites" - suffice to say that in this instance a campanella style execution does absolutely nothing to serve a meaningful performance, instead rather undermining the motific and directional power of the original line.
Well you are probably right that on Yates’ own terms his use of campanella is at odds with his own lofty ideals. It would be interesting to hear how he would justify it - I expect the answer would be along the lines of “it sounds good”. In any case, we are already in agreement that it comes down to taste. I tend to be quite liberal where interpretations are concerned, especially when the piece is an arrangement anyway. In the final analysis all I really care about is whether it sounds good or not.

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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by Paul Cezanne » Tue Feb 05, 2019 1:38 am

celestemcc wrote:
Sun Feb 03, 2019 9:25 pm
Stretch goals are fine: it's great to think ahead and aspire. But you're 2 months into a very difficult instrument. It's not to put you down that you're being advised against this piece. It really is going to take a long time, and you may find it frustrating. Not because you lack talent or ability, but it takes a certain amount of technical facility to play Bach... which takes practice, which takes time.
I realize that, it's going to be hard. That's actually why I choose it, because it is hard, but it looked not too impossible. I guess I'm looking at it with a multi-year time frame.
celestemcc wrote:
Sun Feb 03, 2019 9:25 pm
Even trying a little bit of the piece at a time may frustrate you, when there are easier ways to learn the question you're asking. At the point you tackle Bach (or any piece at this level) you're going to need a very solid technical facility in both hands, and solid knowledge of the fingerboard. ...
Yeah, I guess I figured I'd muddle along. But playing bad Bach must be better than play no Bach.

celestemcc wrote:
Sun Feb 03, 2019 9:25 pm
(we have *all* been there).
That's actually really helpful, thanks!
celestemcc wrote:
Sun Feb 03, 2019 9:25 pm
Find a "stretch goal" that is a piece written for guitar, one that isn't quite so ambitious. Occasionally do revisit the Bach briefly. Bit by bit it will be easier. Use it as a measure of progress -- but not your only measure. Most important for the moment is to enjoy the process of learning and the pieces you can do now. You will get there eventually.
Like Benjamin Britten’s Nocturnal Op. 70? LOL

What would you recommend for a Bach piece? I first heard Bach 50 years ago when my little sister was banging out his first 2 part invention on the piano. I loved it then and I love it now. But I'm pretty sure that even the first invention is very hard, but I want something that sounds awesome, not too boring. Otherwise it wouldn't be a stretch goal.

I even googled and found out what the D01 year end final exam will be. That's intimidating but I'm also looking forward to it.

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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by Paul Cezanne » Tue Feb 05, 2019 1:40 am

Conall wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 4:44 pm
Getting back to the OP:
Thanks! It's been an entertaining digression, that's for sure.
Conall wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 4:44 pm
But at the very least it seems you need to understand some basic principles of fingering before attempting this prelude.
That's what this thread is about, I'm seeking that understanding. One note at a time.

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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by soltirefa » Tue Feb 05, 2019 2:07 am

For what it's worth, here's a recording of this piece using Yates' transcription that I made about a decade ago, maybe more.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/ifrd4y1um392b ... e.mp3?dl=0

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Re: Yates Bach Cello Suite #2 Prelude - Newbie help

Post by Rasqeo » Tue Feb 05, 2019 5:30 am

soltirefa wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 2:07 am
For what it's worth, here's a recording of this piece using Yates' transcription that I made about a decade ago, maybe more.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/ifrd4y1um392b ... e.mp3?dl=0
Bravo! I liked that a lot.

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