I recently was reminded by a friend of the great guitar music of Leo Brouwer. I first encountered his music when taking classical guitar lessons at Miami-Dade Community College from the great Classical guitarist Carlos Molina.
Brouwer’s music is just really interesting. His compositions are modern but they are Cuban.
I have now added Etude First Part from his Etudes Simples collection. HIs original score notates the piece at 104 although he doesn’t bother stating the tempo but notes when the piece should be finished in real time. However, Ricardo Cobo, in his Brouwer, Vol 1 albums play the piece at the more aggressive tempo of 184. In my opinion the syncopation of a piece really comes alive at the more aggressive tempos but in any case a great piece to study.
Below I have my rendition of the first few bars with some creative liberties added to give this snippet some sense of completion. I will work out the entire study and post that sometime later.
The Malaguena was the sixth movement from Ernesto Lecuona , but has been popularized extensively in all sorts of context in popular music and Jazz. Yates has a quick compositon based on the Malaguena that serves as nice single line piece in 3/4.
The technique emphasis for this study is the use of the i finger to accentuate the melody note.
I was having an issue with transitioning through second to last two bars. I didn’t have the angle of the left hand quite right leading to my ring finger blocking the top B string but now that’s good. Still needs some polish but its getting there.
As far as to the engineering, still have not settled on what is the best mix of recording setup and channel inserts.
Carcassi studies emphasize technique but are beautiful to the point that they are worthy of performance. I don’t have this at a performance level but the point is to document my progress so below I have attached the first 16 bars. Its very rough. I’ll make sure to announce when I have this at a reasonable enough performance level.
The first 16 bars emphasize scale runs with held bass note which are falling on beat 1.
Here’s my again very rough take of the first 16 bars:
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I need to find who the composer is. This is an arp study , its pretty. I have the first 4 bars recorded below , not smooth yet and I need to play it closer to the sound hole to bring a more fuller basier and legato sound.
Here’s the entire study , its rough. I’m having still a hard time remembering the transitions, reading helps but it also robs the moment a bit. I put it out here not as a demo but to document where I’m at today so that I can compare later.
Well in the spirit of trying to establish a habit of constant evaluation , of putting myself out there, etc. I now do the simple act of sharing something trivial i.e I’m sticking my toes in the water again. Also playing with a new DAW.
Here’s Mauro Giuliani right hand exercise #1 variations :
The stock exercise are just block chords where the right hand plucks the entire chord every quater note with the thumb going down the chords lowest notes. In other words it exercises the thumb transitioning among the 5, 4 , 3 strings while the i, m fingers are stroking pedal tones.
Useful but not terribly exciting. So to spice things up I shift where the thumb plays on variation 1 that is where in time, basically thumb stroke on bass line followed by i, m rest stroke on pedal notes on top strings.
The second variation is just a dance between the two chords with the bass note leading.
A third variation based on a meter change will be here tomorrow.