Auror14
Registered User
Join date: Dec 2009
199 IQ
#1
I spent a few hours searching for like a complete list of guitar music styles or genres or history or something like that and none of the sites gave me what I need.
The reason why I'm looking for this is that I want to expand my horizons and improve my playing by going over most of the bigger styles like flamenco and such, and later country, blues and jazz.
So, what I need is: an, as complete as possible, chronological list of music styles played on the guitar from when it was concluded to be a six string instrument. First would be classical, romantic and so on. it doesn't matter if it is a classical, flamenco, acoustic or electric guitar. It just needs to be a guitar.
I hope you find a way to help me with this one. Thanks
Malchius
....
Join date: Jul 2008
113 IQ
#2
The first time single course 6 string guitar was belived to become a standard was the late 18th/early 19th century. I would say that every form of music since then has used it in some way, shape or form.
the hirsh
Unegistered User
Join date: Jul 2009
347 IQ
#3
In the beginning there was nothing... And then there was Jimi...


On a more serious note, what you would need is a giant tree diagram or something similar, because the history of guitar music is very much non linear. Like the one in the movie School of Rock.
Myshadow46_2
Join the pack.
Join date: Oct 2008
540 IQ
#4
Do you like all those genres? Have you immersed your self in the music that is made by those who play those genres?

You'll find that practising well will broaden your playing horizons, trying to cover as many genres as possible will not. (unless you carefully study over a long period of time and you have the time to dedicate)
Hydra150
cutebutt mcsexyface
Join date: Nov 2006
1,793 IQ
#5
Use Wikipedia.

Imma copy and paste an essay about the guitar I wrote in school. It may not be at all relevant, but idgaf. It's more about the instrument itsself than the styles of music, and it was mainly about passing my music history class.
I dont know the best way to share a word document so I'll just paste it, shame you guys cant see the bitchin' photos and illustrations I used. Wrapped the paragraphs around the images too, like a fucken pro.


A brief history of the guitar, here goes...


The Early History of the Guitar

The guitar is an ancient instrument which has been evolving into the form we recognise today for millennia - since man first discovered that strings stretched to different tensions would produce different pitches.

The word “guitar” can be traced back to the Ancient Greek “kithara”, which was a type of lyre (a harp like, non fretted folk instrument), however the shape is likely to have developed in the middle ages from various European the Oud and Lute - a plucked, fretted instrument with a small enough to be held in the player’s hands. The guitar first appeared in a form that would be recognisable today in 15th century Spain and was called the “vihuela”. Unlike the Lute it had a round back and was curved inwards on each side much like a modern acoustic guitar, but like many stringed instruments of the renaissance period the vihuela’s twelve strings were separated into pairs (or courses) that were most often tuned to the same pitch (or an octave below) like a modern 12 string guitar or a mandolin - pairing strings gave the instrument more volume as well as creating interesting chorus effect.

The earliest guitar, for which collections of music began to be published around Europe in the second half of the 16th century, is relatively small compared to the vihuela and had only four courses of strings which were higher pitched. One of those collections refers to the guitar as “nothing but a vihuela shorn of its first and sixth strings”, but the diverging repertoire of the instruments suggests that the guitar had developed its own identity and place in society, its smaller range lending itself to simpler music accompanying songs while the vihuela was the preferred choice for more elaborate music.


In the early 17th century the popularity of the guitar spread across Europe, which could be attributed to the two new and easily accessible methods of learning simple strumming and chord patterns which were published, independently, by the pedagogues Jaun Carlos Amat and Fransisco Palumbi. The popularity of Palumbi’s “alfabeto” chordal system - based on learning chords by the letters of the alphabet - led to guitars being designed specifically for strumming simple dance rhythms.

An additional course of strings was added to the instrument as players tried to deal with it’s musical limitations, and the period also saw a burgeoning demand for more complex guitar music - a demand met by highly influential composers such as Giovanni Paolo Foscarini, who mixed the combined the simple “alfabeto” strumming with lute-like plucked passages, and Francesco Corbetta, who was perhaps the most influential guitarist, tutor and composer in the baroque period who impressed the British and French aristocracy with his virtuosic performances and taught many of the future greats of classical guitar - ensuring the popularity of the guitar in Europe for centuries to come. Although the guitar was fast becoming the favourite instrument of the European nobility it was still considered the instrument of the common man in Spain and a guitar could usually be found in barbers’ shops and taverns for patrons who wanted to strum a chord and sing a song - German musicologist and composer noted that it was played by “comedians and buffoons only for accompaniment to Villanelles and other foolish low songs.”


By the late 18thth century many luthiers had begun building guitars with single strings (as opposed to pairs) and with an extra bass string (the six stringed guitar has remained the standard ever since) in response to changing requirements of performers and composers - the wild harmonies and jangling sounds easier on guitars with paired strings, which worked well for the contrapuntal music of the baroque period, became redundant in the classical and romantic movements. Guitar music in the classical period was dominated by the prolific composer and expressive performer Fernando Sor, who was described as “the Beethoven of the guitar” by the contemporary Belgian musicologist François-Joseph Fétis and hailed by musicians of the period as the greatest guitar player in the world. His works are still widely published and peformed to this day.


The beginning of the 19th century saw an artistic movement known as romanticism sweep across Europe. Composers of romantic music attempted to be more expressive, passionate and musically unpredictable (using chromaticism, rubato, unexpected modulation and making use of the full, lush sounds of the expanding romantic orchestra) than those of the classical period, who most often stuck rigidly to the established rules of harmony and counterpoint. Undoubtedly the two most important masters of guitar in this period were Francisco Tárrega and and Antonio Torres - Tárrega a master composer and Torres a master luthier. Tárrega, like Sor a century before him, was hailed by his contemporaries as a compositional genius (described as the “Chopin of the guitar&rdquo as well as guitar unparalleled virtuoso, whose then-unusual technique has become the norm for classical guitarists and who is responsible for much of the modern classical guitarists repertoire, as well as the Nokia ringtone (an excerpt from his piece Gran Vals). His sound was enhanced by the revolutionary guitars that he played, which were built by fellow Spaniard Antonio Torres. Less concerned with elaborate decoration and intricate inlays than his predecessors, Torres focused on creating the most powerful, rich tone he could from his instruments, increasing the body size and depth and using a different, lute-inspired, construction (fan bracing) and different woods for the tops of his guitars which accentuated the harmonic richness of notes without jeopardising the structural integrity of the instrument under the pressure of the strings. Almost all classical/Spanish guitars produced today, 120 years after his death, are practically identical - to the untrained eye at least - in constriction and aesthetics to the guitars Torres built.


The Pursuit of Volume

The early 1900s saw several important developments in guitar building in America. Guitars had been a part of American folk music since the first waves of Spanish immigrants hundreds of years prior, but remained a background instrument due to a lack of volume compared to the fiddle or banjo, however several luthier were working to address this problem by experimenting with metal rather than gut strings. One innovator was the New York born Orville Gibson, who founded the Gibson Guitar Corporation in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Gibson had success with his revolutionary design for flat backed, arch-top mandolins, inspired by European violin builders - making them louder, more comfortable, less fragile and easier to produce - and later went on to apply these design concepts to his guitars, which had arched tops and steel strings (one of the first steel-strung guitars available) as well as being considerably larger than any of his competitors designs for a louder, richer sound. The Gibson L-5, a large bodied arch top with f-holes rather than a circular sound hole, became the standard guitar for rhythm guitarists in big band jazz such as Eddie Lang as well as county artists like Maybelle Carter.


The Pennsylvania based workshop C.F. Martin & Company, founded in 1833 by German immigrant Charles Frederick Martin Sr., were one of the most important innovators in the ‘western’ style steel strung acoustic guitars. Although not the first to offer steel strings, their unique ‘x-bracing’ construction made for a far stronger guitar that would prove to be able to withstand the pressure of metal strings and would be widely replicated. Another innovation from Martin guitars came during the great depression when, in a bid to appeal to banjo pickers looking for more work, they created a new model with 14 frets (rather than 12) clear of the neck to extend the playing range of the guitar. In 1931 they reintroduced (having been first developed in 1916 without success) a 14th fret version the Dreadnought model guitar which was larger and deeper bodied than other acoustic guitars being built at the time - the new shape was louder and more bassy, becoming popular first with bluegrass musicians and has since become the most common shape of acoustic guitar.


Perhaps the most radical redesign of the acoustic guitar came in the form of the resonator guitar. After a request from lap steel player George Beauchamp (who would later co-found the electric guitar company Rickenbacker) looking to be heard over the brass section in his Hawaiian band, John Dopyera (who would later form the Dobro Manufacturing Company with his brothers) designed an acoustic guitar that had a metal cone (resonator) on its top rather than a sound hole and had a body made of metal rather than wood. The experiment proved highly successful and these new and surprisingly loud guitars became the standard guitar for Hawaiian-style slide players of the time and has since become a popular choice for folk and delta blues musicians.
Last edited by Hydra150 at Sep 6, 2012,
Hydra150
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Join date: Nov 2006
1,793 IQ
#6
The Electric Guitar

Despite the various advances in guitar making most players were still struggling to be heard in a big band setting - in the early thirties several inventors were experimenting with electricity as a possible solution, exploiting the magnetic field of the steel strings and sending the signal to an amplifier. The first electric guitar was built by George Beauchamp in 1931; nicknamed ‘the frying pan’, it was a lap-steel guitar that had a magnetic pickup mounted onto its very small circular body (Beauchamp found that a small solid body, rather than large acoustic body, reduced feedback dramatically). After the success of Beauchamp’s design other guitar makers began experimenting with electric pickups for their guitars, notably Gibson. Gibson’s first electrified archtop model, the ES-150 (‘an Electric Spanish’ guitar priced at $150), became a success in jazz orchestras, partly due to its praise by jazz great Charlie Christian (for whom the eclectic pickup was later renamed) as it allowed him not only to sound more clearly when playing rhythm but gave the instrument the chance to be the melody instrument in a large ensemble. Blues greats T-Bone Walker and Muddy Waters also exploited the tonal and harmonic possibilities of these early electric archtop guitars, finding that a guitarist in a small band could have the power of a horn section. Although they had the warm tone perfect for jazz, electric archtop guitars produced unwanted feedback when turned up too loud, and loud was just what was required for rock ‘n’ roll, a rebellious style of music emerging in the 50s that would become synonymous with guitar music.


Leo Fender, a radio repairman who also offered his electronics experience to guitarists and lap steel players looking to have an electro-magnetic pickup built and installed on their instrument, designed and released the first commercially successful solid-bodied electric guitar, the Esquire, in 1949, and would quickly follow it with an improved two pickup version, the Telecaster (briefly named the Broadcaster at first), a guitar which would become the instrument of choice for countless country pickers. In response to the success of Fender’s solid body guitar, Gibson brought popular guitarist and inventor Les Paul (who had contacted Gibson as early as 1945 with his idea prototype solid body guitar, know as ‘the log&rsquo into the company as a consultant who would help design (a collaboration with Ted McCarty, pioneer of electric guitar construction and President of Gibson Guitar Corporation) as well as lend his name to what would become Gibson’s most successful solid body, the Gibson Les Paul, which went into production in 1952 - marketed as a classier alternative to the Telecaster with its flashy gold finish, the Les Paul had two rich sounding humbucking pickups rather than the Fender’s twangy single-coils and had a glued in neck rather than the Fender’s (cheaper to produce) bolt on neck, which is said to increase sustain. Two years later, in 1954, Fender was to begin production of its second electric guitar - the Stratocaster. Leo Fender had a good relationship with many Telecaster players and sought feedback for design improvements for his next guitar, as a result the Stratocaster is a true guitarist’s guitar (as opposed to the Telecaster being an engineer’s guitar - very functional but not particularly ergonomic) - a brand new comfortable shape with body contours and a double cutaway for easier high fret access are among the many design improvements.


These three solid body designs - Stratocaster, Telecaster and Les Paul - are the most iconic instrument designs of the 20th century, being wielded by the guitarists at the for forefront of almost every musical craze and development in rock, pop and country since their initial design - Buddy Holly’s Stratocaster churning out the chunky chords of rock ’n’ roll, Steve Cropper’s Telecaster defining the sound of soul, Eric Clapton’s Les Paul driven ‘woman tone’ redefining electric blues, Jimi Hendrix’s screaming Stratocaster pushing the use of the tremolo further than had been thought possible, Andy Summer’s Telecaster (and a delay pedal) creating signature spacey sound of The Police, Iron Maiden’s dual (and later triple) Stratocaster assault setting the sound of British heavy metal, Steve Jones’ white Gibson Les Paul bringing the distorted power chords to the Sex Pistol’s attitude laden riffs, Jim Root of nu-metal band Slipknot’s signature Telecaster (modified with high output, battery powered humbucking pickups) proving that the instrument really can do anything - the list could be endless, and it is clear to see that these classic (and extremely versatile) guitars have remained relevant for 60 years. That is not to say that there hasn’t been any innovations in guitar design for all these years - because the sound of the guitar no longer depended solely on its shape many luthiers have tried experimenting with adventurous shapes (notably Gibson’s Flying V and Explorer shapes, which proved too modern at the time) of and unusual materials (Dan Armstrong’s plexi guitar, for example, was transparent), building self tuning (Gibson Robot Guitar), digitally enhanced (Line6 Variax), synth-enabled (SynthAxe) instruments - but almost every solid body guitar available in shops, and more importantly in the hands of working musicians, today is a close relative to the blueprints of Leo Fender, Les Paul and Ted McCarty from the early fifties.
But boys will be boys and girls have those eyes
that'll cut you to ribbons, sometimes
and all you can do is just wait by the moon
and bleed if it's what she says you ought to do
Last edited by Hydra150 at Sep 5, 2012,
Sleepy__Head
A cornucopia of trivia
Join date: Jul 2011
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#7
Quote by Hydra150
Use Wikipedia.


This.
Quote by Hail
oh shut up with that /mu/ bullshit. fidget house shouldn't even be a genre, why in the world would it deserve its own subgenres you twat
evolucian
Registered User
Join date: Jul 2008
682 IQ
#8
Quote by the hirsh
In the beginning there was nothing... And then there was Jimi...

This is very true. I'd go with this... but that's just me
Auror14
Registered User
Join date: Dec 2009
199 IQ
#9
I'm actually playing Jimi at the moment, searched wikipedia and as I stated: it didn't give me satisfying results and finally, I'm interested in all of those genres enough to get to know them better.
and the idea with the tree is pretty much it.
Hydra150
cutebutt mcsexyface
Join date: Nov 2006
1,793 IQ
#10
mfw TS probably didn't read my essay
But boys will be boys and girls have those eyes
that'll cut you to ribbons, sometimes
and all you can do is just wait by the moon
and bleed if it's what she says you ought to do
rockingamer2
Larmarky Remark
Join date: Nov 2006
408 IQ
#11
I don't really think that's necessary. Just pick something and go with it. Jazz is big enough already, especially with all the different influences it picks up depending on who and where it's played(Brazil, Europe, etc...). Classical is huge as well.
^^The above is a Cryptic Metaphor^^


"To know the truth of history is to realize its ultimate myth and its inevitable ambiguity." Everything is made up and the facts don't matter.


MUSIC THEORY LINK
Hail
i'm a mean bully
Join date: Jan 2010
431 IQ
#12
just play metal all the other stuff is filler for people to think they're smart when they're not cause they don't like metal
Quote by theogonia777
Hail killed MT

Quote by jongtr
I want to be Hail when I grow up.
Nietsche
Registered Hoover
Join date: May 2009
386 IQ
#13
Quote by Hail
just play metal all the other stuff is filler for people to think they're smart when they're not cause they don't like metal


I agree wholeheartedly with this post.
.
Auror14
Registered User
Join date: Dec 2009
199 IQ
#14
yeah... thanks Oo
I'm pretty sure the most of you don't understand what I need, or have no idea what they're talking about
but thanks for trying
Hydra150
cutebutt mcsexyface
Join date: Nov 2006
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#15
Quote by Auror14
yeah... thanks Oo
I'm pretty sure the most of you don't understand what I need, or have no idea what they're talking about
but thanks for trying

poured my heart and soul into that post ...

Hail was clearly joking, btw.
But boys will be boys and girls have those eyes
that'll cut you to ribbons, sometimes
and all you can do is just wait by the moon
and bleed if it's what she says you ought to do
evolucian
Registered User
Join date: Jul 2008
682 IQ
#16
played Jimi and (I'll pretend I didn't read the wiki thing) it didn't give you satisfying results... must have played it incorrectly then.

*cough* - nice essay hydra. Did you ace it? - *cough*

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand.... yeah, dunno what I'm talking about. Metal it is.
Last edited by evolucian at Sep 7, 2012,
Sleepy__Head
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#17
Quote by Hydra150
poured my heart and soul into that post ...


There, there old chap. If it makes you feel any better I read your post in its entirety. I particularly enjoyed your mentions of both Fernando Sor (a man whose music I came to loathe), and Francisco Tarréga (a man whose music I came to love). I thought you could have mentioned Segovia purely because he rehabilitated the classical guitar to the concert hall, and perhaps spent a little time on future developments - maybe a word or two about the Chapman stick, a mention of Yuri Landman, the Pikasso guitar or developments in MIDI controllers - but it's a difficult task to adequately cover 1,000 years of musical history while keeping things moving forward at an appropriate pace. I thought you did an admirable job.

Quote by Hydra150
Hail was clearly joking, btw.


Never a truer word spoken in jest. Fugues? I shit 'em.
Quote by Hail
oh shut up with that /mu/ bullshit. fidget house shouldn't even be a genre, why in the world would it deserve its own subgenres you twat
CryogenicHusk
wannabe guitarist
Join date: Apr 2012
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#18
Quote by Sleepy__Head
There, there old chap. If it makes you feel any better I read your post in its entirety. I particularly enjoyed your mentions of both Fernando Sor (a man whose music I came to loathe), and Francisco Tarréga (a man whose music I came to love). I thought you could have mentioned Segovia purely because he rehabilitated the classical guitar to the concert hall, and perhaps spent a little time on future developments - maybe a word or two about the Chapman stick, a mention of Yuri Landman, the Pikasso guitar or developments in MIDI controllers - but it's a difficult task to adequately cover 1,000 years of musical history while keeping things moving forward at an appropriate pace. I thought you did an admirable job.


Never a truer word spoken in jest. Fugues? I shit 'em.


A necrobump: Why do you hate Sor's music, Sleepy__Head?

It was a great read, Hydra.
Hydra150
cutebutt mcsexyface
Join date: Nov 2006
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#19


I think I exceeded the essay's word limit, so I couldn't have rambled any farther.

Sleepy_Head hasn't posted in a few weeks I think, btw.
But boys will be boys and girls have those eyes
that'll cut you to ribbons, sometimes
and all you can do is just wait by the moon
and bleed if it's what she says you ought to do
Last edited by Hydra150 at Oct 23, 2012,
CryogenicHusk
wannabe guitarist
Join date: Apr 2012
1,005 IQ
#20
Quote by Hydra150


I think I exceeded the essay's word limit, so I couldn't have rambled any farther.

Sleepy_Head hasn't posted in a few weeks I think, btw.




I think I saw him 1 or 2 weeks ago. Maybe he'll come back. I'll ask him when/if I see him then. It's not a big deal, you know.

Just wondering because I've heard people expressing great dislike towards Segovia, for example, and found out it was due to his strong attitude towards "popular music," the electric guitar and the plectrum, etc, and I can kind of agree with that.

I mean, but that's because I am more of a live and let live kind of person, plus I greatly enjoy and respect modern/popular music like blues, rock, flamenco, metal, and jazz just as much as classical.

However, as somebody mentioned in this thread, Segovia did elevate the guitar from a folk instrument (even called a "toy" by his father, I believe I read somewhere) to a serious concert hall instrument, and his attitude, for better or for worse, most likely played a role in that (probably kept him determined to show what guitars can do if taken seriously in classical music)
Sleepy__Head
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#21
Quote by CryogenicHusk
A necrobump: Why do you hate Sor's music, Sleepy__Head?

It was a great read, Hydra.


Yeah I've not posted for ****ing ages. Apparently I'm dead, or something like that. Certainly felt like it for a while. Work, man, work is busy, and I've been writing some prog-related shit that got completely out of control, and trying to find time to practice and learn Spanish as well. And also see my wife occasionally. Sooo that's all completely off-topic.

As for why I hate el music de Fernando Sor that's a long story but the brief version is that I learned classical guitar for 5 years or so and decided I'd do exams rather than just play for pleasure because at the time I thought I might give teaching a go (I was a total and abject failure at that). Anyway ABRSM exams require that you learn pieces a) from a set list; b) from different periods, so I became, um, extremely well acquainted with the music of Messrs Mauro Giuliani and Fernando Sor because they were often on the syllabus and I was doing exams at the rate of about 1 a year (which meant ditching everything I'd learned the previous year & learning a new set of pieces). And honestly? They really weren't my cup of tea. I mean I get that professional musicians should have an appreciation of the music of different periods and should make an effort to learn about music but although I started off liking them by the end of 7 years of getting (eventually) to grade 8 standard I just couldn't ****ing stand their music any more. It's probably a case of over-exposure, coupled with the fact that although I love classical (small 'c') music I'm just not mad keen on the Classical (large 'C') period because it always seems entirely twee to my ears. Hell, I don't even like Mozart much and I've tried, oh God believe me I've tried. I know it's the nearest thing to heresy in the classical music world but I really don't get on with it. Give me Early thru Baroque music, and Romantic thru Modern music and I'm happy as Larry, but I run like a Kenyan on speed from Classical period stuff.

So - even briefer version - I found his music to have a superficial charm, but playing it for hours on end did my head in. I wouldn't claim that's an objective assessment of any kind. In the end lots of choices about music end up as debates along the lines of "But why don't you like bubblegum flavour ice-cream?". You're either going to like it or you're not, and in my case the answer is 'Not'.
Quote by Hail
oh shut up with that /mu/ bullshit. fidget house shouldn't even be a genre, why in the world would it deserve its own subgenres you twat
CryogenicHusk
wannabe guitarist
Join date: Apr 2012
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#23
Sleepy__Head, I see what you mean. I, at times, have thought that the worst thing you could do if you like a particular piece, or song (that is, if it's challenging enough that you have to practice it and listen to it a lot), is learn it. So I've considered avoiding trying to learn my favorite pieces.

BTW, I, too, prefer to listen to classical music that isn't from the Classical period for the most part.
Hydra150
cutebutt mcsexyface
Join date: Nov 2006
1,793 IQ
#24
Quote by griffRG7321
Hydra, where's your references???

Where are your references???????
But boys will be boys and girls have those eyes
that'll cut you to ribbons, sometimes
and all you can do is just wait by the moon
and bleed if it's what she says you ought to do
Sleepy__Head
A cornucopia of trivia
Join date: Jul 2011
54 IQ
#25
Quote by CryogenicHusk
Sleepy__Head, I see what you mean. I, at times, have thought that the worst thing you could do if you like a particular piece, or song (that is, if it's challenging enough that you have to practice it and listen to it a lot), is learn it. So I've considered avoiding trying to learn my favorite pieces.


Woah! Steady on there! My favourite pieces are a different matter. I think the problem I had with practicing Sor a lot was that I was ambiguous about his music to begin with and the hours of practice just clarified my opinion. The same's true of my favourite pieces though - I still love Tarréga, Brouwer and Dyens' music and I played that stuff for hour after hour. (In fact if you fancy a challenge try the first movement of Dyens' Libra Sonatine. It has awkward fingerings, catch-you-out time signature changes, and just plain difficult passages - it's a right bugger of a piece).

The thing I'm trying to emphasize is that if you're not sure about something try playing it for a few hours because that will make your mind up. Don't avoid learning your favourite pieces, throw yourself into them. If it kills the piece for you well maybe you didn't love it so much after all. Pieces are like relationships: You don't find out unless you try. And sometimes you fail. But that's OK - there are more people out there than one person could ever meet to in one lifetime. And there's also more music out there than one person can listen to in one lifetime. So when you fail pick yourself up and go find a new favourite piece. Broken hearts can be difficult to mend; irritation with a piece is much easier to deal with

Besides: Music's a journey of exploration. Why sit by the campfire when you could be cutting your own path through the jungle?
Quote by Hail
oh shut up with that /mu/ bullshit. fidget house shouldn't even be a genre, why in the world would it deserve its own subgenres you twat
Sleepy__Head
A cornucopia of trivia
Join date: Jul 2011
54 IQ
#26
Quote by Hydra150
Where are your references???????


Yeah!!!!!

And where are my references?????????????????????????????????????????

...

Um. Did I misunderstood the assignment?
Quote by Hail
oh shut up with that /mu/ bullshit. fidget house shouldn't even be a genre, why in the world would it deserve its own subgenres you twat
CryogenicHusk
wannabe guitarist
Join date: Apr 2012
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#27
Quote by Sleepy__Head
Woah! Steady on there! My favourite pieces are a different matter. I think the problem I had with practicing Sor a lot was that I was ambiguous about his music to begin with and the hours of practice just clarified my opinion. The same's true of my favourite pieces though - I still love Tarréga, Brouwer and Dyens' music and I played that stuff for hour after hour. (In fact if you fancy a challenge try the first movement of Dyens' Libra Sonatine. It has awkward fingerings, catch-you-out time signature changes, and just plain difficult passages - it's a right bugger of a piece).

The thing I'm trying to emphasize is that if you're not sure about something try playing it for a few hours because that will make your mind up. Don't avoid learning your favourite pieces, throw yourself into them. If it kills the piece for you well maybe you didn't love it so much after all. Pieces are like relationships: You don't find out unless you try. And sometimes you fail. But that's OK - there are more people out there than one person could ever meet to in one lifetime. And there's also more music out there than one person can listen to in one lifetime. So when you fail pick yourself up and go find a new favourite piece. Broken hearts can be difficult to mend; irritation with a piece is much easier to deal with

Besides: Music's a journey of exploration. Why sit by the campfire when you could be cutting your own path through the jungle?


Oh I wasn't saying Sor was one of your favorites. I was talking more from a personal point of view: a couple of months back started learning Communication Breakdown by Led Zep, for example. I loved the song, but eventually after going over that solo a billion times, I had to take a break and couldn't even listen to the song attentively for a few weeks until I regained interest in it. Same happened in the past when I was trying to play Necrophagist and Cacophony. Never really regained interest in Necrophagist, but I've regained interest in Cacophony since.

But I see what you're saying. Maybe I just wasn't that much into Necrophagist musically as I thought I was back then (I still respect the skills they have, though, but maybe musically they're just not for me). Haven't played any Dyens or Tarrega yet, but I've played Brouwer and it is still a lot of fun to play and listen to. So you're probably right, better not to avoid and just takes things slowly and take breaks in order to avoid burnout.