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Auda

 

Posts: 101
Joined: Sep. 28 2019
 

Old/new school explanation 

I have looked around on the site and have seen some posts pertaining to old school flamenco and modern flamenco. I would appreciate it if someone could give me a lesson on the differences between the two and if possible present some examples.

Thanks in advance
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 13 2019 16:04:14
 
Paul Magnussen

Posts: 1613
Joined: Nov. 8 2010
From: London (living in the Bay Area)

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Auda

In a nutshell:

In the history of the flamenco guitar, there have been four massively influential figures: Ramón Montoya (1879–1949), Niño Ricardo (1904–1972), Sabicas (1912–1990) and Paco de Lucía (1947–2014).

Montoya innovated technically and musically, borrowing techniques from the classical guitar and setting the style for the next several decades. Ricardo and Sabicas (creative though they were) basically followed in Montoya’s footsteps, in that Flamenco remained insulated from the revolutions that were transforming music outside Spain, such as Jazz, Rock and Pop.

Lucía at first followed in Ricardo’s and Sabicas’s footsteps, but became interested in other styles — initially Bossa Nova, and then Jazz in general. The breakthrough came in 1974, when his rumba Entre dos aguas was released as a single and became a massive hit. He subsequently collaborated with the jazz guitarists Al di Meola and John McLaughlin, bringing a whole new audience to his music.

The floodgates then opened, the record companies scenting marketable product and putting out a spate of “fusions”, of extremely variable quality.

Flamenco itself did not remain immune to these innovations, with Lucía introducing new harmonies and syncopations as the mood took him. At the same time, guitarists in other styles started introducing superficial elements of Flamenco into their own creations.

So this was the genesis of “New Flamenco”, which is a term that means different things to different people. You can pretty much chart the progress of the worthwhile stuff simply by working your way through Lucía’s recordings chronologically.

At the other extreme, here’s an embittered review from Amazon:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/customer-reviews/R2TXC097X9YMIX/ref=cm_cr_dp_d_rvw_ttl?ie=UTF8&ASIN=B000001CBZ

Hope this helps.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 13 2019 18:22:06
 
Auda

 

Posts: 101
Joined: Sep. 28 2019
 

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Paul Magnussen

Thanks Paul

It does help clarify the development for me. I am/was a bit confused because I read a reference to harmonics to the differentiation for new flamenco. Not sure how that applies.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 13 2019 18:55:48
 
Paul Magnussen

Posts: 1613
Joined: Nov. 8 2010
From: London (living in the Bay Area)

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Auda

It confuses me, too — at least, if by harmonics they’re referring to the notes you get by lightly touching the string at the 12th fret, etc. Every flamenco guitarist from Montoya onwards has used them.

Harmonic developments, now, that would of course refer to the all the changes I outlined above
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 13 2019 19:40:27
 
Auda

 

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RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Paul Magnussen

I was posting from memory so it was likely harmonic development.

Cheers
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 13 2019 19:43:27
 
gerundino63

Posts: 1465
Joined: Jul. 11 2003
From: The Netherlands

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Paul Magnussen

Nice explained Paul!

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 14 2019 8:42:44
 
mark indigo

 

Posts: 2706
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
From: UK

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Auda

quote:

I have looked around on the site and have seen some posts pertaining to old school flamenco and modern flamenco. I would appreciate it if someone could give me a lesson on the differences between the two and if possible present some examples.


There are other ways to look at this.

One is to question the question. The question divides flamenco into two things, and asks to differentiate them. When you start to define them exactly you run into problems. Where is the exact dividing line between them? You might look at it as a continuum. When I started listening to flamenco I had "old" recordings by Montoya and Ricardo, and also "new" recordings by Vicente Amigo and Paco de Lucia from the 1990's. Listening to Sabicas, Paco de Lucia and Manolo Sanlucar recordings from the 1960's and 1970's filled in some of those gaps.

You can also look at all of the four guitarists (Montoya, Ricardo, Sabicas and Paco de Lucia) as doing the same things of taking the musical culture they grew up with and listening to what was around them and innovating. Montoyas was an avant garde musician in his own time, borrowing from classical guitar and inventing new palos (Rondeña and Mineras). Sabicas recorded classical and latin american music, experimented with fusion (Jeff Beck) and created new ways of playing existing forms (Guajira and Siguiriyas in D tuning). Paco de Lucia merely continued the same process with the influences he was exposed to in his times.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 14 2019 14:14:39
 
Auda

 

Posts: 101
Joined: Sep. 28 2019
 

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to mark indigo

Thanks Mark

As I understand it, you see it more as a continual evolution rather revolution (for lack of a better term). As I said earlier I am/was probably a little confused along with a dose of my own ignorant bias.

Cheers
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 14 2019 14:31:25
 
Paul Magnussen

Posts: 1613
Joined: Nov. 8 2010
From: London (living in the Bay Area)

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to mark indigo

quote:

Sabicas recorded classical and latin american music, experimented with fusion (Jeff Beck) and created new ways of playing existing forms (Guajira and Siguiriyas in D tuning).


True as far as it goes, Mark, and course Sabicas was amazingly creative; but surely what Lucía (and of course Camarón) did was of a a different order from simply playing playing something in a different key?

Montoya apparently played a guajira in D: he doesn’t seem to have recorded it, but it’s on Manuel Cano’s tribute record: that was the inspiration for Paco Peña’s Mantilla y Peina, on Azahara (and elsewhere).
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 14 2019 16:53:33
 
mark indigo

 

Posts: 2706
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
From: UK

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Paul Magnussen

Not just "playing something in a different key" but also playing music outside of flamenco (latin american & classical) and playing with musicians outside of flamenco.

So Montoya and Sabicas (and don't forget a host of others who pushed at the limits of their cultural inheritance with their own creativity like Esteban de Sanlucar, Alberto Velez, Mario Escudero, Manuel Morao), set the template for future developments.

Were the developments of Paco and Camaron of a different order? Or were they of a different time, starting from a different place, and with different social and technological (TV, cassette recorders/players, plane travel, phones) changes going on around them?

The Morao's are interesting, because i watched Manuel Morao interviewed boasting of how he innovated a new fast playing technique, while also saying that style was now traditional and shouldn't be changed! One generation's innovations become the next generations tradition. His nephew Moraito was often held up as being the apex of tradition, yet he said he was of the "School of Paco de Lucia".

Pepe Habichuela said (in Flamenco International mag interview maybe? can't remember...) something like he was "too modern for the traditionalists and too traditional for the modernists"

There are sooo many exceptions and contradictions, I just think the old/new dualistic view is too simplistic.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 14 2019 18:18:30
 
mark indigo

 

Posts: 2706
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
From: UK

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Auda

quote:

you see it more as a continual evolution rather revolution


i think "revolution" is useful marketing term for record companies....

Ramon Montoya was the first to record solo flamenco - we could say that's like Christopher Columbus being the first European to reach the Americas, or being the first to walk on the moon, and everything else after is just refinement....

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 14 2019 18:26:07
 
Ricardo

Posts: 11363
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Auda

There was an excellent quote summarizing the dynamic of biological evolution on earth that stuck in my head, meant to educate folks that have the misconception that life forms steadily progressed from algae to Homo sapiens. It goes “....long periods of relative stasis, punctuated by sudden bursts of innovation”. I feel it applies to flamenco music as well. There are the two main explosions of innovation being Montoya and PDL, but when we talk about how things truly evolved by looking at specifics, we see both discarded advancements similar to genetic mutations that superficially seem upgraded however don’t carry onward, and other funny minor things that took off spreading like wildfire.

For example Niño Ricardo would do these synchopated 3 against 2 arpeggios that end up being the rhythmic basis of a lot of modern toque, but in the context of his own repertoire they appear as minor anomalies. Who knew how enormous that little trick would become? Then there was Paco and Camaron’s Canastera. Aficionados felt they had invented a new palo that was gonna develop and blossom amongst the flamencos. It turned out as a one off evolutionary culdesac. Vicente Amigo introduced looped palmas tracks...everybody started using em thereafter. An american named David Jones showed his gitano buddies a new key on the guitar that sounded similar to Montoya’s Rondeña altered tuning, but it was in STANDARD tuning. Quite a simple silly thing wormed it’s way through the ranks of the modern players until it had found a way into EVERY standard palo somehow. That’s pretty amazing thing to happen IMO.

I am very fascinated, as you can tell, by these seeming minor details and specifics regarding how flamenco has evolved. What irritates me are the generalizations that can be quite far off the mark....the number one being that modern flamenco has turned into “jazz” music somehow, and it’s mainly Paco de Lucias fault.

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CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2019 7:13:31
 
gerundino63

Posts: 1465
Joined: Jul. 11 2003
From: The Netherlands

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

An american named David Jones showed his gitano buddies a new key on the guitar that sounded similar to Montoya’s Rondeña altered tuning, but it was in STANDARD tuning. Quite a simple silly thing wormed it’s way through the ranks of the modern players until it had found a way into EVERY standard palo somehow. That’s pretty amazing thing to happen IMO.


@Ricardo,

If you have a spare moment, would you be so kind to tell me (maybe some more of us) what that was that David Jones showed his gitano buddies?
Very interesting stuff!

Peter

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2019 8:49:53
 
Auda

 

Posts: 101
Joined: Sep. 28 2019
 

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Ricardo

Excellent contribution Ricardo. It reads like a short speciation summary of Flamenco. This is turning into a very informative thread.

Cheers for that.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2019 12:25:23
 
mark indigo

 

Posts: 2706
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
From: UK

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to gerundino63

quote:

what that was that David Jones showed his gitano buddies?


the story goes he was trying to figure out how to play Montoya's Rondeña, or something in that style, in standard tuning, and came up with the tonality of E flat/ D sharp. He showed it to Felipe Maya, who passed it on.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2019 20:38:25
 
kitarist

Posts: 692
Joined: Dec. 4 2012
 

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to mark indigo

quote:

ORIGINAL: mark indigo

quote:

what that was that David Jones showed his gitano buddies?


the story goes he was trying to figure out how to play Montoya's Rondeña, or something in that style, in standard tuning, and came up with the tonality of E flat/ D sharp. He showed it to Felipe Maya, who passed it on.


David Jones a.k.a. David Serva, if that helps (to whoever may not know). Speaking of, has anyone watched 'Gypsy Davy'? https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2091307/

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Konstantin
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2019 20:49:54
 
Paul Magnussen

Posts: 1613
Joined: Nov. 8 2010
From: London (living in the Bay Area)

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to kitarist

quote:

Speaking of, has anyone watched 'Gypsy Davy'?


Yes indeed. Reviewed it here, for those interested:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/customer-reviews/RGTYRZDEFL6CN/ref=cm_cr_dp_d_rvw_ttl?ie=UTF8&ASIN=B00G4HYUFE
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2019 22:19:34
 
kitarist

Posts: 692
Joined: Dec. 4 2012
 

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Paul Magnussen

Thank you, Paul. I'll have to check it out. So it's moved to Amazon [Prime] now (apparently used to be on Youtube and before that on Netflix; or maybe the other way around).

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Konstantin
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 15 2019 23:04:06
 
El Burdo

 

Posts: 511
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RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Paul Magnussen

Vey much enjoyed seeing Miguel Funi in the Serva clip - so, went down the Youtube tunnel, but stopped here.
Paco de Valdepeñas singing and dancing here (5'30") is described by DE Pohren as "one of the finest flamenco dancers I have ever seen. He is untrained in the sophisticated intricacies of footwork and stage polish, and he can do nicely without them, for Paco has the force and natural gypsy gracia that completely overshadows the academy trained dancers who largely dominate the commercial scene".
His depth, humour and elegance are self-evident. I think the business pressure these days on market awareness, distinctiveness, brand, social media presence etc leads to a gigantic plume of mediocrity marketed by self-obsessed lightweights. I 'd hope it masked a profound core of simple truth, but I doubt it. Song and dance have moved from expressions of culture to tourism and more or less, that's what I think about old school/new school.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 16 2019 12:51:54
 
Ricardo

Posts: 11363
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to gerundino63

quote:

ORIGINAL: gerundino63

quote:

An american named David Jones showed his gitano buddies a new key on the guitar that sounded similar to Montoya’s Rondeña altered tuning, but it was in STANDARD tuning. Quite a simple silly thing wormed it’s way through the ranks of the modern players until it had found a way into EVERY standard palo somehow. That’s pretty amazing thing to happen IMO.


@Ricardo,

If you have a spare moment, would you be so kind to tell me (maybe some more of us) what that was that David Jones showed his gitano buddies?
Very interesting stuff!

Peter


Specifically this:


He developed that piece I guess in the 70’s and inspired this guy’s rumba in 1980 at 4:45


Who inspired his nephew to do the same in 1987:


And this guy same year who was rubbing elbows with the Gitanos in Madrid:



He also touched on the key in the middle of his Granaina. But then in 1991 this kid burst on the scene and decided to get brave and try it as Solea por Buleria, Buleria, AND granaina all on the same disc!


Intro and at 2:52



It quickly opened the doors to become a standard key for experimentation with any palo from Fandango and Sevillanas to siguiriyas, solea, buleria, you name it, by almost every tocaor born after 1947. And speaking of one guy that stubbornly avoided using it despite other innovations, he finally broke down and pulled out this in 1998:



_____________________________

CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 16 2019 22:44:28
 
Ricardo

Posts: 11363
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Auda

quote:

ORIGINAL: Auda

Thanks Mark

As I understand it, you see it more as a continual evolution rather revolution (for lack of a better term). As I said earlier I am/was probably a little confused along with a dose of my own ignorant bias.

Cheers


My response earlier was regarding specifically the evolution of flamenco GUITAR SOLO playing, sorry for not making that clear. It is important to consider, when you are ready for it, the way the cante and guitar have evolved as well, both TOGETHER. It is a much less obvious subject, but in this thread last year I pointed out some of my own personal discoveries of how things have evolved within the world of cante using specific examples.

http://www.foroflamenco.com/tm.asp?m=313974&appid=&p=&mpage=2&key=picaros&tmode=&smode=&s=#314283

_____________________________

CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 16 2019 23:39:14
 
Schieper

 

Posts: 65
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RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to El Burdo

That is a verry enjoyable clip. I realy liked this. Sory for displaying my ignorance here but what palos are the both songs?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 17 2019 10:53:23
 
Auda

 

Posts: 101
Joined: Sep. 28 2019
 

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to El Burdo

Thanks El Burdo

I really enjoyed that! For me it was a cultural performance rather than a flamenco show. If that makes any sense.

Cheers
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 17 2019 12:49:21
 
Auda

 

Posts: 101
Joined: Sep. 28 2019
 

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Ricardo

I had a look at the thread you linked to Ricardo but it is way beyond my ken. My abilities are confined just to the rudimentary reading of notation with minimal theory. My initial interest in flamenco has been piqued by the flamenco solo guitar. I'm not sure where it will go from there though because, I confess, the video El Burdo posted above has aroused my interest in the other components of flamenco. But in a more general sense I do enjoy the history of the art form especially in its cultural setting.

Cheers
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 17 2019 13:11:25
 
El Burdo

 

Posts: 511
Joined: Sep. 8 2011
 

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Auda

quote:

For me it was a cultural performance rather than a flamenco show. If that makes any sense.

It makes absolute sense. We decide where we are in what we understand, in this case about flamenco - for me, that means that I don't have any truths, but I understand what is most meaningful to me. It would be naive to think these were not vain and egotistical performers (because that's what performers generally are, pace Diego etc) but the more trivial market competitive values (speed, gymnastics) don't seem to apply and the effect is mesmerising. On and on, like a rising tide of tension, it's fantastic.|

By the way, this is only one of four excellent videos of the same fiesta. Another similar set, (which may be linked) figures cantaora Antonia 'La Negra' Montoya, family and friends. They are all of the same quality. Enjoy!

Schieper, I think they are Bulerias.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 17 2019 13:59:36
 
JasonM

Posts: 1073
Joined: Dec. 8 2005
From: Baltimore

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to kitarist

quote:

David Jones a.k.a. David Serva, if that helps (to whoever may not know). Speaking of, has anyone watched 'Gypsy Davy'? https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2091307/


Watched this last night. The film is more about his infidelity to his wives than flamenco life. Although not mutually exclusive. But a few spoilers*

The two highlights of the film for me were: Serva Jones hooked up with this flamenco dancer, moves in with her, and then sleeps with all her dance students


The Mr Jones from The Counting Crows song “Mr. Jones” is actually referencing David Serva’s son, a friend of the lead singer.

Oh and one more interesting tid bit. del Gastor declared Davy Jones must be a gypsy because he had red under his fingernails and not white. And of course he could accompany cante like a boss.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 17 2019 15:31:37
 
gerundino63

Posts: 1465
Joined: Jul. 11 2003
From: The Netherlands

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Ricardo

@Ricardo,

Thanks for explanation and the pointing toward the video’s!
Many thanks for the time you took to presented it on this way.

It is now “normal” to our ears, but very facinating how things are “invented” and become a normal musically vocabulaire .

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 18 2019 11:34:55
 
JasonM

Posts: 1073
Joined: Dec. 8 2005
From: Baltimore

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

And this guy same year who was rubbing elbows with the Gitanos in Madrid:



I always thought Flamencos in New York had a lot of cool pieces but Gerardo never plays anything but the rondena Bulerias from it. Maybe I’m wrong
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 20 2019 18:57:06
 
Ricardo

Posts: 11363
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to JasonM

quote:

ORIGINAL: JasonM

quote:

And this guy same year who was rubbing elbows with the Gitanos in Madrid:



I always thought Flamencos in New York had a lot of cool pieces but Gerardo never plays anything but the rondena Bulerias from it. Maybe I’m wrong


You might have the later reissue that mixed tracks from two first albums .... the piece I linked is from gallo azul 1987. True that there is some good stuff he rarely played later on from Nueva York (1989) , but I can assure he did remember and teach a lot of it over the years. Things like Alegrias, the tango in triplet feel, golondrina super fast buleria, Gil Evans tribute etc, I’ve seen all that stuff in class.

_____________________________

CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 21 2019 13:17:59
 
JasonM

Posts: 1073
Joined: Dec. 8 2005
From: Baltimore

RE: Old/new school explanation (in reply to Ricardo

I popped my cd in and your right its not on there. But actually I was thinking of the pieces you mentioned anyway. I got Nueva York and Gallo Azul albums at about the same time in early 2000’s So my brain also mixes up the tracks! but I remember buying Jucal which was already missing the rondena (USA version?). So confusing.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Oct. 21 2019 16:15:44
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