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Ricardo

Posts: 14641
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

Sabicas 1939 

here is a nice short clip of Sabicas playing granaina as a young man...hadn't seen it before. Very good synchronization for an old movie.



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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 16 2015 22:59:46
 
rombsix

Posts: 7778
Joined: Jan. 11 2006
From: Beirut, Lebanon

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

Highlights of the clip:

0:58 through 1:06 --> woman swooning
1:25 through 1:29 --> picado!
1:56 through 2:00 --> ligado show-off (look ma, no right hand!)

Cheers!

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 16 2015 23:16:56
 
Sr. Martins

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RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

That's nice, 1939... I always had the impression that he was born old.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 17 2015 0:06:23
 
minorthang

 

Posts: 222
Joined: Dec. 25 2014
 

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

always old hehe , maybe here he was like 11

this is also pretty cool playing classics a nice concert hes gettin on here in this video maybe 17

  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 17 2015 14:49:39
 
SephardRick

Posts: 358
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RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

Nice find, Ricardo

This Granaina is well worth studying IMHO. Those burst of picados catch you off guard. Seems Sabicas was a master showman from the start.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 17 2015 15:17:16
 
BarkellWH

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From: Washington, DC

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to rombsix

quote:

Highlights of the clip: 1:56 through 2:00 --> ligado show-off (look ma, no right hand!)


Carlos Montoya frequently did an extended ligado while holding up his right hand, and, of course, the audience loved it. That was one of the reasons many disparaged Carlos's playing, along with his extended tremolos and lack of compas discipline. Nevertheless, Carlos could actually play very well when he wanted to, and in his earlier days he accompanied some fine dancers, including La Teresina and La Argentina.

Sabicas has always been my favorite flamenco guitarist, bar none. Nevertheless, as this clip demonstrates, even the great Sabicas was not above a little showmanship. I guess we shouldn't be too hard on Carlos.

Cheers,

Bill

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And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 17 2015 16:24:33
 
Grisha

 

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RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

Showmanship is present in dance and in some cante. Why should guitar paying be any different?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 17 2015 17:25:15
 
BarkellWH

Posts: 3456
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Grisha

quote:

Showmanship is present in dance and in some cante. Why should guitar paying be any different?


I agree, Grisha. I just wanted to point out that many flamencos disparaged Carlos Montoya's playing, mainly because he often did not observe compas discipline, but I have also heard him criticized because of his "show-off" ligados and his extended tremolos. I think much of the criticism was just plain envy because Carlos was drawing huge audiences that would fill auditoriums for his performances at a time (the '50s, '60s, and '70s) when others were not.

I will always appreciate Carlos Montoya because he introduced me to flamenco. When I was 17 I first bought a vinyl LP of Carlos playing flamenco, and then I saw him perform in person in Phoenix, Arizona. I saw him live a couple of times after that as well, including once in 1982 at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. That was a time when flamenco guitarists would perform solo, with no other guitars, no cajon (it was before Paco introduced the cajon from Peru) and certainly no bass guitar and harmonicas!

Criticism aside, Carlos really could play well when he wanted to. And when he was younger he did play for some very good dancers, including, as I mentioned previously, La Teresina and La Argentina. In my opinion, Carlos was the one who first popularized flamenco guitar in the U.S.

Cheers,

Bill

_____________________________

And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 17 2015 18:11:50
 
tijeretamiel

 

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RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

Thanks for posting the clip.

No matter how hard I could try I can never tire of watching Sabicas play. A really expressive touch to his playing.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 17 2015 18:34:43
 
BarkellWH

Posts: 3456
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to tijeretamiel

quote:

No matter how hard I could try I can never tire of watching Sabicas play.


If I were stranded on a desert island and could have one, and only one, CD, it would be Sabicas's "Flamenco puro."

Bill

_____________________________

And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 17 2015 19:08:10
 
SephardRick

Posts: 358
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RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

One thing for sure - as Ramzi pointed out - Sabicas had an obvious affect on the female spectator

That goes past showmanship... It is charisma.

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Rick
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 17 2015 19:22:24
 
Escribano

Posts: 6415
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From: England, living in Italy

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

Very good synchronization for an old movie.


Sound on film synch. was widely available by then.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 17 2015 20:16:45
 
tijeretamiel

 

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RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Escribano

quote:

ORIGINAL: Escribano

quote:

Very good synchronization for an old movie.


Sound on film synch. was widely available by then.


I'm not entirely sure, but the issue might be the frames per second issue and the conversion from analogue to digital.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 17 2015 20:32:45
 
Richard Jernigan

Posts: 3416
Joined: Jan. 20 2004
From: Austin, Texas USA

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Sr. Martins

quote:

ORIGINAL: Sr. Martins

That's nice, 1939... I always had the impression that he was born old.


Yes, apparently he progressed backward in age. He had more hair in 1969 than he had in 1939.

But seriously folks, is it worth mentioning that the dancer is Carmen Amaya?

RNJ
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 17 2015 23:59:11
 
Ricardo

Posts: 14641
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Richard Jernigan

quote:

ORIGINAL: Richard Jernigan

quote:

ORIGINAL: Sr. Martins

That's nice, 1939... I always had the impression that he was born old.


Yes, apparently he progressed backward in age. He had more hair in 1969 than he had in 1939.

But seriously folks, is it worth mentioning that the dancer is Carmen Amaya?

RNJ


I often wondered whose hair piece was worse...sabicas or di meolas?

about carlos showmanship...sorry that is not what it is that people don't like. I was not surprised at all about his criticism .... as a teen I listened to both with no prejudices or deep understanding, and it was clear that Sabicas had a fine touch and sound and skill at accompanying.... Carlos' recordings were very hard to tolerate due to the tone and what he was doing. I admit I had a relisten to St. Louis to Seville and there are some cool things on there after all...but to compare the two because they were concertizing in USA is silly IMO.

Ricardo

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 18 2015 0:17:50
 
guitarbuddha

 

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RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

ORIGINAL: Ricardo



I often wondered whose hair piece was worse...sabicas or di meolas?



Ricardo



Surely the Guitar King of Wigs (not to mention out of context wordy explanations running round in circles and obscuring meaning)

  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 18 2015 1:45:34
 
BarkellWH

Posts: 3456
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

about carlos showmanship...sorry that is not what it is that people don't like. I was not surprised at all about his criticism .... as a teen I listened to both with no prejudices or deep understanding, and it was clear that Sabicas had a fine touch and sound and skill at accompanying.... Carlos' recordings were very hard to tolerate due to the tone and what he was doing. I admit I had a relisten to St. Louis to Seville and there are some cool things on there after all...but to compare the two because they were concertizing in USA is silly IMO.


I wasn't comparing them because they were both concertizing in the U.S., Ricardo. I just meant it as an aside that Carlos was criticized for his "show-off" ligado while holding his right hand up. I have heard that criticism, and I just pointed out that Sabicas also did it in the clip, although not nearly as long and to the extent that Carlos did. It was just an unimportant observation on my part.

Carlos really often did shred compas though, and he sometimes sounded a little "rough," although he did not seem to care. And he has been roundly criticized for that, with good reason. The interesting thing is he actually could play well and in compas when he wanted to, which makes one wonder why he didn't do it all the time?

I think I have stated clearly that although I will always appreciate Carlos Montoya for introducing me to flamenco guitar as a teenager, I graduated to Sabicas, and Sabicas remains to this day my favorite all-time flamenco guitarist; and, as I mentioned above, one whose CD I would want if stranded on a desert island and I could have only one CD with me. I totally agree with your observation that Sabicas had a much more refined touch and sound than Carlos.

Cheers,

Bill

_____________________________

And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 18 2015 13:19:58
 
keith

Posts: 1108
Joined: Sep. 29 2009
From: Back in Boston

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

i think the difference between sabicas' ligado in this piece and carlos montoya's typical ligado is that sabicas knew when to stop whereas montoya's ligados went on and on and on...or at least they seem to do so.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 18 2015 14:07:27
 
josecarlos

 

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RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

Her some more ligados technique

  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 18 2015 15:27:04
 
minorthang

 

Posts: 222
Joined: Dec. 25 2014
 

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

regarding the grananianas does any one know has this version or similar been transcribed?

if so what is it tilted - yet probably best to do what im doing slow it down and work out a few picado and play then molto slow - amazing playing so young really captures an incredible aire
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 18 2015 15:33:13
 
josecarlos

 

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RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

and here performing a bulerias in a Pedro Infante's movie, who was a very famous singer and actor in Latin America at that time and today still is.

  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 18 2015 15:33:40
 
keith

Posts: 1108
Joined: Sep. 29 2009
From: Back in Boston

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to minorthang

minorthang--dennis koster, who was student of mario escudaro and sabicas has a piece in his third volume of the keys to flamenco that is based on sabicas' granadinas. unfortunately the volume is out of print. i may have the piece at home and can check to see if i have it and possibly scan it (i will need to figure out how to do it on my ricoh at work). if you are interested p.m. me.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 18 2015 16:44:04
 
Ricardo

Posts: 14641
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to BarkellWH

quote:

I have heard that criticism, and I just pointed out that Sabicas also did it in the clip, although not nearly as long and to the extent that Carlos did. It was just an unimportant observation on my part.


It might be because we guitar players tend to focus on the right hand more when watching someone play...but truth is his right hand in no way gets held "up in the air" in order to show off his left hand...instead he just lets it dangle, and in fact off camera... not even close to showing off. In the other clip posted he lets it simply hang down and we see it because the camera pans out.

Now I agree about showmanship issue when he does his rasgueados up and down the neck...that is pretty silly IMO...and sure he would deserve equal scolding to anybody from Carlos to Rodrigo and Gabriela. THe thing with carlos is that, along with everything else that is distasteful, the hold up the right hand thing as he did often is like icing on the cheese cake.

Ricardo

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 19 2015 10:54:54
 
BarkellWH

Posts: 3456
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

THe thing with carlos is that, along with everything else that is distasteful, the hold up the right hand thing as he did often is like icing on the cheese cake.


I have often wondered why Carlos played as he did, when he clearly had the ability to play well, in compas, and without the cheesy showmanship. Was it all his idea? Did his manager or agent push it? Was his American wife, in part, responsible? In the end, it had to come down to Carlos deciding to do it, as he could have resisted it had he wanted to, regardless who pushed it.

Bill

_____________________________

And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 19 2015 12:36:26
 
Grisha

 

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RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

A question: is there anybody else that sounded similar to Carlos? If there is, I haven't heard it. To me, CM is one of the most unique players that ever lived. Right hand up in the air or not.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 19 2015 12:51:50
 
keith

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From: Back in Boston

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to BarkellWH

There were probably several factors that prompted Carlos to go the path he did. I am sure having to pay rent and put food on the table was a big one. Carlos made his name in the age when a lot of folks in the USA did not know real flamenco but knew the cheesy tourist flamenco. I would imagine his paying customers hooted and hollered when he did his cheesy flamenco and probably sat stone face when he did his real flamenco. A few rounds of this and Carlos knew what his buying public wanted. Remember, those were the days before Sabicas became well entrenched in the USA and it was definitely before Paco.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 19 2015 12:52:12
 
Ricardo

Posts: 14641
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Grisha

quote:

ORIGINAL: Grisha

A question: is there anybody else that sounded similar to Carlos? If there is, I haven't heard it. To me, CM is one of the most unique players that ever lived. Right hand up in the air or not.


yes. Manitas de Plata. Also amazingly "unique".

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 19 2015 13:19:29
 
Grisha

 

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RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to Ricardo

I have no dislike for both. Sorry, Ricardo.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 19 2015 13:28:21
 
jshelton5040

Posts: 1500
Joined: Jan. 17 2005
 

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to BarkellWH

quote:

ORIGINAL: BarkellWH

I have often wondered why Carlos played as he did, when he clearly had the ability to play well, in compas, and without the cheesy showmanship. Was it all his idea? Did his manager or agent push it? Was his American wife, in part, responsible? In the end, it had to come down to Carlos deciding to do it, as he could have resisted it had he wanted to, regardless who pushed it.


I think I read somewhere that Carlos' wife was Irish (maybe Scottish). I had a recording years ago of Carlos accompanying his wife. It sounded like a bunch of carpenters randomly pounding nails while he played guitar.

I tried once to get him to come to my house when he was in town by promising food, drinks and the company of every flamenco person it town. His wife was quite rude and condescending in her negative response.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 19 2015 13:57:19
 
estebanana

Posts: 9315
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: Sabicas 1939 (in reply to BarkellWH

quote:

I have often wondered why Carlos played as he did, when he clearly had the ability to play well, in compas, and without the cheesy showmanship. Was it all his idea? Did his manager or agent push it? Was his American wife, in part, responsible? In the end, it had to come down to Carlos deciding to do it, as he could have resisted it had he wanted to, regardless who pushed it.

Bill


It must have been his American wife.

The old joke about the happiest man in the world applies:

The happiest man in the world has an American salary, a Japanese wife an English home and fine Chinese food.

The saddest man in the world has an American wife, a Chinese salary a Japanese home and English food.

_______

Clearly however Carlos far was inferior to Sabicas because Carlos was never booked into the Jernigan Suites when he toured. This caused Carlos to lose sleep, be stressed out and to get sloppy when on stage because his American wife badgered him about the accommodations.

While Sabicas always stayed in the JS and probably had cocaine hidden under his tooupee'.


Not to poop on the party, but I like Sabicas, how can you not like him? You would have to be a real naffer ( is that word? ) to not like him. But there is something often predictable about how he structures things that I find samey. However his picado often seems better than Paco's and his sound is great.

I like other guitar players of his era better, I am more into Nino Ricardo and Perico del Lunar, Morao clan, but Sabicas has to be dealt with no matter what.

I also used to have a Montoya recording where he played for Nino de Almaden, he was not cheesy he just took care of business. So he went into a commercial kind of mode later, but who can blame him? With that American wife always jealous of Sabicas girlfriends and the way they holed up in the Jernigan Suite with a bottle of fino and room service. The Jerngan Suite was been the room of choice for musical royalty since the age of the Plantagenents.

American women were Nabokov's undoing as well, so it's no wonder Carlos had trouble with compas, being married to one. Word has it Carlos wanted to be a writer and to get on the bus with the Electric Kool Aid Acid test gang, but his wife prevented him from hooking up with Ken Kesey. He also wanted to get rooted deep into the American counter culture and work with the Grateful Dead, which is also why he cultivated his sense of showmanship. He thought Jerry might notice him and want to have him throw down a ton of pull offs while Pig Pen jammed with him on drums.

Long before Carlos Montoya wanted to join in on the Summer of Love fun, his American wife took him to Brooklyn. They looked onto the possibility of buying a dry cleaners so Carlos could make a living without going on tours and then he could stay home and write in the evenings. Brooklyn did not suit him however, and despite the protesting of this wife they moved to Manhattan where she danced in a club called Casbah by Night, she was a specialist with a red sash and a sword with a jewel encrusted handle. She balanced the sword on her head while Carlos played and she held it so there so long he had to invent a left hand ligado that could stretch like an elastic band while he waited for her to resolve the sword moves. He reportedly could ligado on one note for twenty minutes. He considered was the pinnacle of NY City showmanship and even during the heady days that Camelot was hitting Broadway, show goers would taxi over to Casbah at Night to catch Carlos' infinity loop ligados while chit chatting about the musicals and plays they had seen that evening.

Eventually it was apparent that Carlos would never write that novel, press slacks in a tidy corner of Brooklyn or take LSD in Golden Gate park. He lived out a comfortable life and recorded with singers who had long ago passed their expiration dates. He was happy to go down in flamenco history as the monster of all pull offs, and his USA minted wife after all made one hell of a macaroni and cheese casserole.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 19 2015 14:01:15
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