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Ricardo

Posts: 13411
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to payaso

quote:

But this is just at the very top end of a wide spectrum of ability and ambition. What concerns me is the help available for most lovers of flamenco guitar who (like me) are not going to be great players and will have little opportunity to play for dancers or singers. They can still find enormous pleasure and fulfilment in going as far as they can – and they deserve encouragement rather than be given unrealistic targets.


That is a quite fair assumption. I would put forth that EVERYONE is learning with only their own point of view as a reference, and therefore limited as to how far they might go. Many rest on their laurels rather than re examin where they are at, nor seek out challenges after certain plateaus are reached. But it reminds me of a student I had a long time ago. He was in his 80's, a total beginner, and had already quit his first teacher that he described as "a drill instructor". In my heart I thought the "drill instructor" was probably trying to instill legit compas skills, but this poor guy was coming near the end and just wanted to enjoy his life and his guitar. I told him it was no problem, and began showing him stuff that he thought sounded good, anything he wanted to try really. Metronome was a no go, but he was just having a blast making his guitar sound pretty. Poor guy would take minutes to change two chords with his stiff vice grip fingers, but it didn't matter, he was having a swell time, and writing everything in his little tab notebook. He really loved the lessons and continued for about year, always a big smile on his face when he left class.

He attended a spanish festival I told him I was performing at. Some people he met there invited him to come play for their dance class, and he took it upon himself to go do this on his own, never asked me about it. Now I don't know who it was, but the mediocre wannabe guitar student they had playing for the class took one look at the old man struggling to change two chords and told him to put his guitar away, he wasn't even beginner level yet and that he had NO compas. He came to his next class with me and told me this story and said he wanted to focus on compas from now on. I was so pissed at who ever that was, but now stuck in this awkward position. I pulled out the metronome reluctantly, and showed him how to move chords in time and keep the groove, super super slow of course. Drill sergeant style that he hated like his first teacher had probobaly tried. He tried to change between two chords for a minute or two, then his face changed, realizing what was gonna be involved and he looked so depressed and disturbed. He never came for another class and I never saw him again. This type of thing really breaks my heart....but I will never let it happen again. We all need to be honest about what is going on with level and learning, and I would be lying if said method books are perfectly fine. They are simply not fine, at least none I have seen. If you want to delude yourself go right ahead, but know you will one day pay for it. There is a method to all the madness and it doesn't discriminate life goals or cator to preconceptions.

Ricardo

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 8 2017 5:01:07
 
Leñador

Posts: 5237
Joined: Jun. 8 2012
From: Los Angeles

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Ricardo

This happens with baile too. Many dancers just want to wear pretty dresses and stomp around, many give up when they realize the intricacies of flamenco. My lady got really discouraged by this at first but she pushed through it and now enjoys things on a.....less superficial level. Not the exact nomenclature I was looking for but that's the idea.
For me the complexities and subtleties are what hooked me more and more. I was in such a hurry to try and learn as much as I could as fast as I could. Once I really realized how big it all was I gave up in the best way possible. Now I learn things little by little, enjoying the journey. I realized I'd never be a pro and it'll never be my living so just enjoy it, stop pushing yourself into resentment.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 8 2017 9:45:52
 
mark indigo

 

Posts: 3388
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Mark2

quote:

This is a great contribution, and speaks very well as to how you have attained the level you have.


agree, i respect anyone who can take these kind of feedback and learn from them, have encountered too many big fish in little ponds who think they know it all and aren't interested in learning (and wouldn't know humility if it knelt before them and kissed their feet).

quote:

HAHA, the struggle goes on.......
your stories made me laugh too, but with you, not at you, i so recognise that struggle!

I don't have many soundbites to report, but have had plenty of disasters i have done my best to unpick and learn from. I once took a group master class type workshop with José Antonio Rodriguez and he said of my playing that the rhythm was good but the accent was wrong. He also said i sounded like "guiri flamenco" - ouch!

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 8 2017 9:46:25
 
mark indigo

 

Posts: 3388
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

I realize that playing for dance can affect your dynamics in away that might not be musically so good.


i gotta say in defence of playing for dance that it can depend on the dancer.

One class i play for the teacher is a real stomper and always asking me for "ma' peso" (more weight) and telling the class "heavy, heavy, harder, harder".

But another class i play for the teacher is totally different, using a lot of light and shade dynamics in her footwork and marking and asking me for the same.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 8 2017 9:52:40
 
mark indigo

 

Posts: 3388
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Leñador

quote:

For me the complexities and subtleties are what hooked me more and more. I was in such a hurry to try and learn as much as I could as fast as I could. Once I really realized how big it all was I gave up in the best way possible. Now I learn things little by little, enjoying the journey. I realized I'd never be a pro and it'll never be my living so just enjoy it, stop pushing yourself into resentment.


for me too, it took me quite a while to get to that point. Eventually I started to get good enough to realise how bad i was, and then i could really start learning , as you say, "little by little, enjoying the journey"

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 8 2017 9:55:17
 
Ricardo

Posts: 13411
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to mark indigo

quote:

ORIGINAL: mark indigo

quote:

I realize that playing for dance can affect your dynamics in away that might not be musically so good.


i gotta say in defence of playing for dance that it can depend on the dancer.

One class i play for the teacher is a real stomper and always asking me for "ma' peso" (more weight) and telling the class "heavy, heavy, harder, harder".

But another class i play for the teacher is totally different, using a lot of light and shade dynamics in her footwork and marking and asking me for the same.


Of course. I didn't mean that what I had been doing for dance was wrong, but rather, carrying that baggage into the world of solo guitar or for cante might require more care. As a small example, I don't use the Marote heavy duty strum in most of my guitar solos anymore, it and certain other things are reserved for Dance world.

Ricardo

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 8 2017 14:27:34
 
mark indigo

 

Posts: 3388
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

Of course. I didn't mean that what I had been doing for dance was wrong, but rather, carrying that baggage into the world of solo guitar or for cante might require more care. As a small example, I don't use the Marote heavy duty strum in most of my guitar solos anymore, it and certain other things are reserved for Dance world.

sure, I understand that some things are more appropriate for dance, others for solo etc., but wanted to point out that some dancers actually want the dynamics etc. that you might normally use for solo playing (and i'm really fortunate to have the learning experience of playing for a dance teacher who is far above me in experience, knowledge, ability etc. but who is also really humble, patient and encouraging ).

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 8 2017 16:26:05
 
rmj

 

Posts: 17
Joined: Nov. 13 2009
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Ricardo

It's interesting what Paco Cepero says at 43:03:


Yo tengo que agradecer mucho a Jerez, mi tierra, y a los gitanos. Porque yo sin haber tenido el apoyo de ellos y haber aprendido a su vera.. porque a mí... Tío Borrico, Terremoto, ese Barrio de Santiago... eso, le debo yo muchísimo, porque me hicieron llorar muchísimo, pero me inculcaron y me metieron el compás dentro de mi corazón y de mi fibra. Yo ahora mismito juego con el compás pero a mí me costó sudor y lágrimas. A mí me decían: niño, ven p'acá y me cogían y se cachondeaban de mí, pero pa' que yo... me ridiculizaban pero pa' que yo aprendiera y una vez que ya me enseñaron, dice ea... ya tú puedes hacer lo que tú quieras que ya tienes el doctorado. Y hoy aprenden a tocar la guitarra, tienen la técnica pero les faltan las vivencias de estar buscándose la vida con las fatigas que hemos pasado nosotros, y eso se nota.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 8 2017 18:20:17
 
Piwin

Posts: 3406
Joined: Feb. 9 2016
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Ricardo

Jesus that made me mad just reading about it.
F*ck that guy (the accompanist not your student, obviously).

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 8 2017 23:14:15
 
jg7238

 

Posts: 2854
Joined: May 11 2009
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to soclydeza85

If you just want to learn a few "go to pieces for flamenco beginners" which quite frankly I don't recommend then take a look at this. This could be what you're looking for.



https://www.stringsbymail.com/sophocles-papas-six-easy-flamenco-variations-for-solo-guitar-5549.html
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 8 2017 23:55:34
 
mark74

Posts: 690
Joined: Jan. 26 2011
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to jg7238

I think its ok to want to play a few easier pieces. Some of us are just nylon hobbyists and arent committed to being an authentic flamenco player. There are guys who play a little latin jazz or rumba or some Spanish classical who like to add a few simple traditional flamenco pieces to the mix
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 9 2017 0:35:54
 
jg7238

 

Posts: 2854
Joined: May 11 2009
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to mark74

quote:


RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to jg7238) 

I think its ok to want to play a few easier pieces. Some of us are just nylon hobbyists and arent committed to being an authentic flamenco player.


I didn't say it wasn't ok to do it. I just don't recommend it.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 9 2017 0:41:17
 
Dudnote

Posts: 1800
Joined: Nov. 13 2007
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to jg7238

quote:

ORIGINAL: jg7238

If you just want to learn a few "go to pieces for flamenco beginners" which quite frankly I don't recommend then take a look at this. This could be what you're looking for.



https://www.stringsbymail.com/sophocles-papas-six-easy-flamenco-variations-for-solo-guitar-5549.html


Have you looked at these Juan? How do they compare to the level of Paco Pena's book? I ask because I've 3 total beginners asking me for lessons.

Edit: is this it?


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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 9 2017 2:30:03
 
jg7238

 

Posts: 2854
Joined: May 11 2009
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Dudnote

quote:

Have you looked at these Juan? How do they compare to the level of Paco Pena's book? I ask because I've 3 total beginners asking me for lessons.


Oh-Oh... Anytime I here the E major chord followed by the same E chord up a half-step it's a red flag for me.... I didn't know S. Papas used it but anyway I'm not sure if the video you posted is the same material from the book I'm referring to. I think the Paco Pena stuff is more advanced than Papas. Paco is meant for intermediate level I think.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 9 2017 17:51:08
 
Fitz63

 

Posts: 104
Joined: May 16 2016
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Ricardo

I originally suggested the Paco Pena book, as that is kind of what I did after Juan Martin's Arte tutorial book. It was good to get another perspective, even if I'm still not a big fan of the way it's tabbed. I think it's not easy, but I don't think there is anything in the world of flamenco that is. I had little chance of getting a teacher, and this was my introduction. I remember well the first dance class I sat in, and not being able to play a note, even after several years of self-study. So I took myself away and concentrated on compas. And I'm ok now, not perfect but much better. What doesn't kill you, and all that. In my dreams I sit at the foot of a maestro, and will be happy when I can get that situation. At the moment I'm stuck with what I have.

I still think a guitarist with some experience of fingerstyle guitar, who can read tab, and has gone through a few tutorial lessons can get a lot out of a piece like this -



https://ontheshouldersofgiants2017.wordpress.com/2017/03/09/focus-on-sound/
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 9 2017 19:40:46
 
mark74

Posts: 690
Joined: Jan. 26 2011
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to jg7238

No offense, but I dont understand why that would be a red flag. Its a beginner's level piece, I think maybe a malaguena por arriba. Its meant for people who don't have a lot of dexterity yet and are just getting their fingers coordinated.

Here's some of the Juan Martin stuff I was talking about





Some OK guitarists started with Juan Martin
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 9 2017 20:01:48
 
jg7238

 

Posts: 2854
Joined: May 11 2009
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to mark74

Well quite frankly if it's a Malagueña Por arriba then I would rather use this as a reference.


  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 9 2017 20:35:46
 
mark74

Posts: 690
Joined: Jan. 26 2011
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to jg7238

Of course thats a much better malaguena, but its at a higher level. If you have beginning students you need to feed them milk and bread before they can eat meat...
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 9 2017 20:41:53
 
jg7238

 

Posts: 2854
Joined: May 11 2009
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to mark74

Well the title says initiation into malaguena. Any beginner that has some finger style experience can grasp something from that unless you're totally clueless on holding the guitar if that's what you mean by beginner. You can cut out the picado and focus on the strumming.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 9 2017 20:53:29
 
Dudnote

Posts: 1800
Joined: Nov. 13 2007
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to jg7238

quote:

ORIGINAL: jg7238

Well the title says initiation into malaguena. Any beginner that has some finger style experience can grasp something from that unless you're totally clueless on holding the guitar if that's what you mean by beginner. You can cut out the picado and focus on the strumming.

Yep, I really meant two kids with completely zero guitar experience and can't play a clean C chord. I'll put them on to that abanico / picado combination next class

@Mark74 thanks for posting the Juan martin vids. His solea there is quite the direction my last (and so far only) class with those kids was going in.

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Ay compañerita de mi alma
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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 10 2017 2:50:08
 
jg7238

 

Posts: 2854
Joined: May 11 2009
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Dudnote

Oopps sorry there dudnote.. i was actually replying to mark74 on that. Abanico is the way to go. Quite frankly who cares about picado anyway...
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 10 2017 3:34:58
 
Leñador

Posts: 5237
Joined: Jun. 8 2012
From: Los Angeles

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

Quite frankly who cares about picado anyway...

This is like when rich people say "money doesn't really matter anyway..." haha

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 10 2017 5:46:18
 
mark indigo

 

Posts: 3388
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to mark74

if someone isn't
quote:

committed to being an authentic flamenco player
why would they want to
quote:

add a few simple traditional flamenco pieces to the mix
? why not just add some spanishy sounding strumming and a bit of a phrygian scale to the mix?

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 10 2017 15:03:35
 
mark indigo

 

Posts: 3388
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to payaso

quote:

the few Encuentro videos I have seen would be far too difficult for most beginners.
I dunno which Encuentro vids you've seen, but the main one i recommended was Merengue de Cordoba 1, which is aimed at beginners....

quote:

For the very many such players ["most beginners"], books and DVDs which spell out the basics and address their needs are a much more useful approach and should not be scorned.
Oscar Herrero DVD's

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 10 2017 15:08:42
 
mark74

Posts: 690
Joined: Jan. 26 2011
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Leñador

No kidding Lenny. Id lose a toe for JG's picado. Maybe just one little toe, but a toe none-the-less
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 10 2017 20:40:46
 
mark74

Posts: 690
Joined: Jan. 26 2011
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Dudnote

Youre quite welcome. I found Juan Martin's original method book the best thing for playing easy pieces and he's really been my only instructor other than classical teachers back in community college in the 90's. If you have some basic classical technique and just want to learn some fundamental pieces I can think of no-one better. Of course, if you want to be a serious flamenco guitarist it's best to get a professional flamenco instructor and start learning the basics of compas
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 10 2017 20:47:17
 
Ricardo

Posts: 13411
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to mark74

quote:

ORIGINAL: mark74

Of course thats a much better malaguena, but its at a higher level. If you have beginning students you need to feed them milk and bread before they can eat meat...


Not really. One is a flamenco malagueña (the only kind) intro that uses basic techniques, perhaps Abanico being the serious challenge here, or the tremolo. The OTHER, was not inferior, it simply WAS NOT A MALAGUEÑA AT ALL OF ANY KIND. It was some wishy washy spanishy nonsense with some brief excersion into copyright violation of a classical piece by a cuban composer named Lecuona, that just so happened to use the title for his piece "malagueña" which he borrowed from flamenco traditions though he never meant it to BE any thing related to the flamenco song form "malagueña". The student is planting seeds for which kind of tree? That is why I said inititially to jump right in with AUTHENTIC material.

Ricardo

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CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 11 2017 16:42:03
 
Richard Jernigan

Posts: 3225
Joined: Jan. 20 2004
From: Austin, Texas USA

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Ricardo

Well, there is a slight connection to malagueña in Lecuona's piece. He quotes verdiales, which is a fandango popular from the province of Malaga. Of course, this doesn't make it a flamenco malagueña. But flamencos sometimes finish off malagueña with a verse or two of verdiales, in compas abandolao...at least they used to.

RNJ
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 11 2017 23:46:12
 
estebanana

Posts: 8345
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

The student is planting seeds for which kind of tree? That is why I said inititially to jump right in with AUTHENTIC material.

Ricardo


The first time I went to Spain I saw a Gitano kid sitting on a curb, maybe no older than 8, a scrawny kid. He was practicing solea remate' over and over. It must have been his dad's guitar, it was huge compared to him. He dripped with aire on just the remate'.

I always wonder which giant of toque he turned out to be. He would be about 35 to 37 years old now.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 12 2017 0:31:00
 
Ricardo

Posts: 13411
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Good beginner pieces (in reply to Richard Jernigan

quote:

ORIGINAL: Richard Jernigan

Well, there is a slight connection to malagueña in Lecuona's piece. He quotes verdiales, which is a fandango popular from the province of Malaga. Of course, this doesn't make it a flamenco malagueña. But flamencos sometimes finish off malagueña with a verse or two of verdiales, in compas abandolao...at least they used to.

RNJ


No he doesn't. Perhaps you refer to PDL versions where add verdiales into it in order to make it legit flamenco? (More like he adds Lecuona quote to his Malagueña/verdiales composition)





Here he plays the whole lecuona and adds verdiales at the end.


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CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Mar. 12 2017 14:49:58
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