Mark Clifton-Gaultier wrote: ↑
Wed Mar 27, 2019 2:54 am
Gordon wrote:What is the technical name of the technique where one slides the fretting finger up and along the string for a few frets and the note that is produced keeps changing all the way up the string?
is the common Italian term Gordon - aka "slide".
There's another term, portamento
, which means something subtly different depending on the era (and the composer using it). Basically using the arm to shift an already fretting finger along the string - carrying
a second finger into place where it will take over the job. Very common in romantic period playing a la Tárrega but also used before that by e.g. Sor and Aguado.
Some folks use the terms (and techniques) indiscriminately and interchangeably - a shame really as we lose some of the subtlety of phrasing and distinctive period character (if you care about such things - others might argue that they can't hear the difference).
I don't think portamento is even possible on a fretted instrument, although I could be wrong. I've always thought that Guitar was almost, shall we say, 'limited' to glissando, so to speak. Of course if we think about the Guitar from the Electric Guitar perspective, this is probably not the case at all. (Whammy bar and pitch shifting pedals for example.) Or even Pedal Steel.
But this is after all, a Classical forum, so I must digress.
Playing with positional shifts, for me anyway, is absolutely essential for developing guitar technique, and also learning new methods, and that these variety of technical methods help immensely to facilitate expression, which for me is the ultimate goal of any technical exercise- to help broaden the ability to express myself musically, such that I will often repeat and improvisé on a simple exercise using different shifts and different fingerings, adding bits and pieces such as open strings or different harmonic or melodic parts.
I find it a very valuable exercise to play using suggested shifts, but also to occasionally use different positions or fingerings than what are suggested, and using ones that aren't easy or make sense logically at first glance, as are many of the ones originally suggested, in an attempt to shake up my preconceptions and my muscle memory, and also to shift my mind and make it open to the new sounds provided by the nearly infinite voicings and timbres available within the guitars sonic pallete, as sublimely subtle as they may often be.
All that being said, if you think some shifts are weird, you should hang with me and my mates sometime around the campfire jam- that might surely get your head scratching, in a good way of course!
"Pay no attention to what the critics say. A statue has never been erected in honor of a critic." -Jean Sibelius