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Progressing after 2 years   You are logged in as Guest
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flyeogh

Posts: 729
Joined: Oct. 13 2004
 

Progressing after 2 years 

Hi all

Just looking at my next plans to progress my flamenco guitar playing.

I now have compass elements of 5 palos (Alegrias, Fandangos, Farruca, Sevillanas y Solea) and about 12 falsetas spread across those palos. The 3 techniques I thought 2 years ago I’d never master: tremolo, full bar down the stalk rapid chord changes, a 4/5 stroke rasqueos, are now coming along just fine.

I still will need to practise hard over the next 6 months before I change much but now retired I have plenty of time (2/3 hours min a day), 3 great guitars, and a music room where I can play without annoying family or neighbours (always wanted to say that and now I can .)

With two professors and many book/CD/Internet materials I’m not short of things to work with.

One route forward could be cante and dance accompaniment. Sadly this is not a route forward for me. First I’m extremely unlikely to get involved with people I could accompany. Secondly, I have the dance and voice abilities of a one-legged frog with a sore throat (no disrespect to frogs intended).

At 68 later this month it’s too late for me to think about a professional career, even if I had the talent - and I don't. So that leaves solo guitar for pleasure as my chosen route. And I think I have a plan.

The one thing that is certain is I do not want just to go forward adding falsetas and palos using typical short pieces you get from typical course materials.

I’ve read several members here who were basically in a similar or more advanced position than mine, but had then run out of steam. So wanted to ask if anyone had a route forward they had tried or thought of that keeps the progression and rewards of this great journey.

_____________________________

nigel (el raton de Watford - now Puerto de Santa Maria, Cadiz)
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 9 2020 16:10:42
 
Stu

Posts: 1979
Joined: Jan. 30 2007
From: London (the South of it), England

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to flyeogh

quote:

I have plenty of time (2/3 hours min a day), 3 great guitars, and a music room where I can play without annoying family or neighbours (always wanted to say that and now I can .)


This sounds like absolute bliss!! Tell me can you lock it from the inside so family and neighbours can't annoy you? 😂

I'm not quite sure what your goal is after you've ruled out those things? So no playing for dance or singers? And don't just wanna keep adding falsetas?
Whats left?

Erm.....?

Must be some dance classes up in Watford no? That would be cool.
Although maybe not at this time.

If you've just been learning from professors/Books maybe try transcribing from videos/recordings? I don't get to do it so much these days but I was hooked on this for ages. Helps develop your ear and understand how things work a bit more.
Find more artists you're inspired by. Listen to them.
See what happens.

How's your Bulerias?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 9 2020 16:34:17
 
flyeogh

Posts: 729
Joined: Oct. 13 2004
 

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to flyeogh

Stu not Watford for some years. I'm across the bay from Cadiz.

quote:

locks ......so family and neighbours can't annoy you? 😂


In the summer we have some Madrid family here but they tend to wait for silence before entering with a cold beer or glass of Cava. So no lock. And for Spaniards they are not too noisy

_____________________________

nigel (el raton de Watford - now Puerto de Santa Maria, Cadiz)
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 9 2020 17:06:54
 
Stu

Posts: 1979
Joined: Jan. 30 2007
From: London (the South of it), England

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to flyeogh

😂😂 of course you are! I forgot...just remembered the Watford in your sig..obviously blocked out the Cadiz..Or I may have crumbled with jealousy.

I almost made a joke about adding some extra touches to your music room to make it feel like Spain. But.... No need.
Gosh I love Cadiz. Got good memories of a brutal sunburn on Playa de Santa Maria and going up to some magical 360° roof top place. Also a fantastic impromptu flamenco session in a tiny local bar. And meeting some crazy old timey Cantaor.. Chiquito de Cadiz???

So...
I'm sure there must be a few dance classes somewhere in Cadiz! 😄
You could just sit in with the main guitarist and pick up some stuff no?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 9 2020 17:28:46
 
flyeogh

Posts: 729
Joined: Oct. 13 2004
 

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to Stu

quote:

You could just sit in with the main guitarist and pick up some stuff no?


If the chance comes along Stu I’ll be open to it but I’m thinking more long term with a clear objective. One idea I have is to try and play a few longer pieces by some maestro. A sort of 18 month to 2 year project.

So far I’m looking at my man who wrote my Alegrias falseta (although I’ve now learned that it was written for Bulerias and adapted to use as an Alegrias course piece.) Jose Luis Monton. I thought he would be good as: he’s still alive, he gives lessons in Madrid and online, most of his tabs are available, and of what I’ve heard I like the stuff. But there may be better choices.

In the early days I did get over enthusiastic and bought a PdL book. But so many tadpoles!!

I’m going to look at JLM tabs and see how difficult they get. But from what I’ve heard on Youtube I think he has some easier (than PdL) pieces that last 5 minutes or longer.

On Bulerias I’ve deliberately put it off until I’ve progressed some more. That of course could meet the long term project need in its own right - and I might find a specialist Bulerias course here in Spain. Or maybe 2 weeks with Ander's old friend Antonio Dovao in Huelva. I’ve only driven through Huelva so be a good opportunity to see the place.

_____________________________

nigel (el raton de Watford - now Puerto de Santa Maria, Cadiz)
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 9 2020 17:59:49
 
Goldwinghai

Posts: 204
Joined: Mar. 17 2015
From: Virginia USA

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to flyeogh

Nigel, I am in a similar situation like yours, retired and want to be good at playing the Flamenco guitar. I have no problem of playing the guitar at any time of the day or night. My music room is isolated from the rest of the house and the neighbors are hundreds of yards away. I used to practice 3 hours a day, but only one to two these days. The two things that hinder my progress are: i) the fingers 3 and 4 of the left hand. These fingers don’t move up and down fast like fingers 1 and 2. ii) the Spanish language. I like to travel to Spain twice a year for vacation and guitar lessons. Not knowing Spanish I missed out on instructions and explanations from the teacher as well as his communication with the dancers and singers in the guitar accompaniment classes.

So starting in June I began taking Spanish class online via Skype and Zoom. Initially one hour a week, now 4 hours a week. Hopefully by the time I return to Spain, these guitar accompaniment classes will be more enjoyable.

In the morning I play slowly the finger exercises or falsetas that involve fingers 3 and 4 for about 15 minutes before working on the transcriptions. I have probably two dozen books, transcriptions and methods, that I can pull out a page to work on. The problem I have is after spending months on a piece and if I feel happy with the way I play that piece, I move to the next challenge. A few months later, I already forgot the previous piece. So what I have are work-in-progress pieces and forgotten pieces.

The dance teacher sent me this weekend a YouTube link on Cante Por Bulerias primera letra explicada, encouraging me to get back on the guitar. She has taken some cante classes. I have not been to her school since last September.

So basically I do or play what my mood tells me.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 11 2020 3:27:17
 
himanshu.g

 

Posts: 40
Joined: Jun. 9 2016
 

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to flyeogh

quote:

I now have compass elements of 5 palos (Alegrias, Fandangos, Farruca, Sevillanas y Solea) and about 12 falsetas spread across those palos. The 3 techniques I thought 2 years ago I’d never master: tremolo, full bar down the stalk rapid chord changes, a 4/5 stroke rasqueos, are now coming along just fine.


congrats! that is some serious progress in 2 years, may be try and make some youtube vids with what you already know :)
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 11 2020 6:37:30
 
Stu

Posts: 1979
Joined: Jan. 30 2007
From: London (the South of it), England

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to Goldwinghai

I always remember learning (on here I think. And I've def heard Ricardo mention it a few times to folk)

Something along the lines that one shouldn't really be thinking about learning 'pieces'

This is a classical kind of mindset.

With flamenco you learn. The bits. Falsetas, intros, rasgueado patterns/progressions, remates etc etc.
Then you just keep learning more and building and piecing them together as and when you need (ie when you accompany)

With that said... I still envy a player I watch on youtube who can play an entire piece. Easy or hard. Something about the discipline and practice routine (and ability obviously) that has allowed them to be able to perform that piece. Something to do with stamina. Which although ive played long solea and Algeria for dance... I couldn't really perform a 'piece' Which is a bit **** considering how long I've been playing.

😂 kind of talked myself in a circle there.

So also that being said....
That's the idea.
But if you really wanna learn a piece why shouldnt you? I dunno maybe someone will have a reason why.

I suppose it's a clear and defined 'goal' to achieve in a year or whatever.

Maybe some paco pena piece? I always remember him having a book with some reasonable difficulty 'pieces' in.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 11 2020 18:20:11
 
Stu

Posts: 1979
Joined: Jan. 30 2007
From: London (the South of it), England

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to flyeogh

quote:

One idea I have is to try and play a few longer pieces by some maestro. A sort of 18 month to 2 year project


Was thinking last night.

This sounds like you need a foro flamenco challenge!?

Not sure if the guys do them any more.
Always enjoyed following them but never got involved myself.

What happened to them guys? did they die out?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 12 2020 18:05:55

payaso

 

Posts: 85
Joined: Dec. 7 2014
 

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to Stu

One great feature of the Foro is that it is open to players and makers of every level of aspiration and ability. But there is perhaps a downside to this diversity in that wires get crossed when conflicts arise because of a failure to understand the differing needs and financial status of participants. So you get people saying the best way to learn is by this particular method (such as Skype lessons) and other methods (such as books) are inferior, or that wanting to play pieces is not the way to play flamenco (even if PdL or Grisha did just that).

We can recognise several distinct categories of players. For example, as a very rough list:
Level 1 Players aiming for a professional career as a versatile flamenco performer in the professional world of flamenco
Level 2 Players aiming for a professional career playing flamenco music, perhaps as soloist, perhaps as accompanist etc.
Level 3. Players hoping to perform at a similar level of ability but as amateurs.
Level 4. Players wanting to be able to perform (with increasing ability) some flamenco guitar music for themselves or friends and family.

I’m sure others could provide a better categorisation, and I am not suggesting that Foro participants should be identified by category. But it’s probably true to say that the number at level 4 vastly exceeds the numbers at the ‘higher’ levels. It is unseemly to see Level 4 players criticised or even (recently) mocked for not being at ‘higher’ levels.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 13 2020 12:49:27
 
Ricardo

Posts: 13331
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to payaso

quote:

It is unseemly to see Level 4 players criticised or even (recently) mocked for not being at ‘higher’ levels.


That is a shame. If only the higher level folks could be non critical to others below, simply ignore them or tell them sweet lies, and stick to being honest with only those on their own level. After all, you NEVER see level 4 or lower dishing out any CRITICISM or dropping heavy OPINIONS on players above their own level... never!

_____________________________

CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 13 2020 16:45:55
 
Stu

Posts: 1979
Joined: Jan. 30 2007
From: London (the South of it), England

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to payaso

quote:

It is unseemly to see Level 4 players criticised or even (recently) mocked for not being at ‘higher’ levels.


😕
Well that took a turn.

Erm... I hope nothing I said in my post came across like that (mocking)
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 13 2020 17:05:22
 
TonyGonzales84

 

Posts: 78
Joined: Apr. 23 2020
From: San Diego, CA

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to flyeogh

Stu,

I saw your comment on perhaps needing a challenge as positive and encouraging, not as mocking. I can envision your getting a brain fart, that old lightbulb turning on, and I think it's great input. There are many methods (or, modes) of learning.

Tony

_____________________________

Tony
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 13 2020 18:01:24
 
mark indigo

 

Posts: 3342
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
 

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to payaso

quote:

It is unseemly to see Level 4 players criticised or even (recently) mocked for not being at ‘higher’ levels.


where or when did this happen? in this thread? or in a different thread?

_____________________________

  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 13 2020 19:06:03
 
JasonM

Posts: 1804
Joined: Dec. 8 2005
From: Baltimore

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to flyeogh

quote:

’ve read several members here who were basically in a similar or more advanced position than mine, but had then run out of steam. So wanted to ask if anyone had a route forward they had tried or thought of that keeps the progression and rewards of this great journey.


Find a Level 1 player and take a lesson. Or, see a show/performance. That helps me keep plugging away when inspiration runs out.

It can be hard to find a balance of playing for fun vs actually putting in the (not always fun) work needed to improve.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 13 2020 20:27:28
 
Stu

Posts: 1979
Joined: Jan. 30 2007
From: London (the South of it), England

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to TonyGonzales84

Thanks Tony,

Yes as I re read my post to make sure....I got to thinking perhaps there was some other incident on another thread that those comments referred to.

quote:

That helps me keep plugging away when inspiration runs out.



Yes, I agree with Jason. Seeing a show having a lesson is a great idea!
I've noticed many times over the years that inspiration is the key to keep that steam flowing.
I've had many moment of thinking...jeez maybe this is it for me... And then discovering a new artist and that re igniting the passion or motivation. Then it becomes easy again.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 13 2020 20:40:54
 
mark indigo

 

Posts: 3342
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
 

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to Stu

quote:

Yes as I re read my post to make sure....I got to thinking perhaps there was some other incident on another thread that those comments referred to.
I hadn't noticed anything "mocking" anyone in this thread at all, so I think it must be another thread....

_____________________________

  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 13 2020 21:53:30
 
Piwin

Posts: 3394
Joined: Feb. 9 2016
 

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to Ricardo

Yeah the running out of steam because I was just learning set pieces and adding more and more falsetas has happened to me. I think for me the real reason I ran out of steam is that it just wasn't organised around any real sense of purpose. And so the solution was to play with/for others.

It doesn't have to be accompaniment to baile/cante if you have no interest in that, but maybe, instead of saying I'll learn this piece in the next 18 months, you could tie it down to a live performance on a set date. Doesn't have to be anything big, maybe even just for one person, but setting it up as a serious performance as opposed to just "oh, well since you asked I'll casually take out my guitar and try to noodle through a piece" kind of thing.

The thing with set pieces is that you can always improve them in some way or another. So if what you want is a clear objective, "learning to play XXX piece" may not be enough. Oddly enough, the better you get at playing the piece, the more the objective "learning to play it" becomes hazy... Tying it down to some sort of performance with a set date will add that clarity. Anyway, just a thought.

_____________________________

"Anything you do can be fixed. What you cannot fix is the perfection of a blank page. What you cannot fix is that pristine, unsullied whiteness of a screen or a page with nothing on it—because there’s nothing there to fix."
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 14 2020 0:59:21
 
Mark2

Posts: 1696
Joined: Jul. 12 2004
From: San Francisco

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to Ricardo

Lower than level 4?

Like:

level 5-people who can't tune their guitar or play a bar chord
level 6- people who own a guitar with 3 strings on it
level 7- people who own a guitar case but it's got a gun in it







quote:

ORIGINAL: Ricardo
After all, you NEVER see level 4 or lower dishing out any CRITICISM or dropping heavy OPINIONS on players above their own level... never!
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 14 2020 17:29:55
 
JasonM

Posts: 1804
Joined: Dec. 8 2005
From: Baltimore

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to Mark2



My inspiration has been dead especially with the whole quarantine. But I’m still practicing everyday out of habit So in some sense the quarantine has been good.

Check out this guy's picado. Yeah, pretty impressive. Pretty sure I can do better, I’ll upload a video to prove it when I get a guitar

  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 14 2020 20:04:31
 
Stu

Posts: 1979
Joined: Jan. 30 2007
From: London (the South of it), England

RE: Progressing after 2 years (in reply to JasonM

quote:

My inspiration has been dead especially with the whole quarantine. But I’m still practicing everyday out of habit So in some sense the quarantine has been good.


Yeah I've been playing more than I have in a long time. It's great! But yeah not necessarily inspired. Just more time and not exhausted after 14 hr days of pointing lights at actors.

Could def do with some inspiration!
All local dance classes are still off. No shows anywhere. Only YouTube vids and Google play music

quote:

level 5-people who can't tune their guitar or play a bar chord
level 6- people who own a guitar with 3 strings on it
level 7- people who own a guitar case but it's got a gun in it


😄😄
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 14 2020 20:17:10
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