Black Orpheus Guitar Arrangement

Here is my arrangement of Luis Bonfa’s classic bossa nova hit. It was also performed on a film called Orfeo Negro and was originally called Maha De Carneval. I have shared the lead sheet for this piece before, this version includes melody with bossa nova accompaniment in A minor. Its a popular piece and very evocative. […]

New Free Beginner Course

     You can now try the beginner Latin Guitar Course in the courses menu. Here are the lessons covered in this introductory course: Sitting and Hand Positions Guitar Notation Basics The Rest Stroke Rest Stroke Exercises Parts of the Guitar Rhythm Exercises Overview of First Three Strings E, F, and G Exercises B, […]

Girl From Ipanema Arrangement

   If you would like access the score and use the play along soundslice software you can purchase the arrangements course which comes with a e-Book including study notes.        

Rumba Picking Pattern in A minor

Rumba’s can be strummed or plucked. It can be played as an arpeggio style pattern with the bass taking precedence and the chord tones filling in the rest of the beats. In this Example we have the chords Am and E with the 3-3-2 pattern being played in the bass part. Start off slowly and […]

Villa-Lobos Exercise

Here is an excellent exercise you can practice to work on the following techniques: position change arpeggios slurs string crossing Its from his Etude No 1. You can loop it over and over to really get into a flow.    

Useful Bossa Nova Pattern

Useful Bossa Nova Pattern  Using the chord following chords, you can create auseful Bossa Nova Pattern: Am – AmM7 – Am7 – Am6 There is an internal line which is descending chromatically. Follow the video to learn the finger and right hand pattern. Some examples of this pattern in pieces include: Besame Mucho Girl From […]

Entre Dos Aguas

  This piece, written by Paco De Lucia, was written in 1973 and is featured on is album Fuente y caudal. As told by his sister on the documentary Light and Shade Paco improvised this piece as a filler for the album. Ironically it was a runaway hit and helped Paco break in to the […]

Rumba Strumming

    Rumba Strumming is a very useful tool for performing flamenco music. This video will take you through the Rumba technique as used by Paco De Lucia and Gipsy Kings (and many others). The chord progression we are using is Am – G -F – E . We start with a thumb down and […]

Free Latin Chord E-Book

If you are interested in Latin Jazz chords as they relate to popular Latin tunes then this book will serve as a great introduction. This e-book will cover: The basics of chord construction, Extended chords, chord patterns, a chord dictionary of all the major latin jazz chords, some practice chord progressions. Included are also 5 […]

The Four Times Rule – How to Eliminate buzzes and wrong notes

The Four Times rule is something you can use to improve the quality of your practice and eliminate small and annoying mistakes that can creep into your playing. Sometimes mistakes do happen when practicing or performing and thats ok but we can definitely minimise them through methods like this one. One often finds that under performance […]

Paco De Lucia on English TV 1976

Here is an example of incredible guitar skill and mastery. The great Paco De Lucia performing on Parkinson in the UK. The piece is Almoraima which is a Buleria. Amazing rhythmic control and depth.

Alzapua

Alzapua is a flamenco technique involving the thumb. the term comes from the word alzar which means to raise. It is usually payed as a fast flourish of notes in quick sequence. The thumb plays all notes using down and up strokes. Played accurately and fast it can sound fantastic as a high point of a falseta or […]

Five Famous themes by Tarrega

Francisco Tarrega (1852-1909) was a Spanish guitarist composer who lived in the latter part of the 19th Century. He composed some of the best known pieces for the Spanish guitar. Born in Castellon, Tarrega took lessons in guitar and piano as a boy. He studied composition at Madrid Conservatory and by his Twenties was performing […]

8 Ways to handle performance nerves (for guitarists)

Performance nerves can be a real issue for guitarists, especially because of the nature of how we create sound on the guitar. Nerves can manifest themselves as shaking of the hands, sweating, memory slips, loss of focus and more. There things can amount to technical breakdown, buzzing, wrong notes, and many more unwanted effects. There […]

G Lydian Mode : Authentic Flamenco Scale

Today I’m going to shaw with you an authentic flamenco scale. Its also used a lot in jazz as well. Its the Lydian mode. A lot of guitarists have confusion about what modes are, it took me a long time to get my head around how to use them. The best thing you can do […]

Tip Of The Day: Major 7th Arpeggios

Today I’m going to show you a good technical exercise to add to your daily practice called Major 7th Arpeggios. After I’ve gone through some scales when I practice I like to go through some arpeggios. There is a two octave arpeggio that I like to play. Let’s say we start on G on the […]

Rumba Strumming 101 – Play Like the Gipsy Kings

Here’s my first video blog; Rumba Strumming is a flamenco technique. It has been used a lot by artists like the Gipsy Kings and Ottmar Liebert. Its an excellent technique to learn especially if you want to play with other guitarists. Rumba Strumming – Full Score

Andres Segovia at Los Olivos

Here is an excellent documentary about Andres Segovia and his life. Filmed in 1968 when Segovia was 75, the documentary features interviews with the Maestro and a number of performances. Segovia plays beautifully and has an amazing tone, there is a nice quality to this film. This is an informative and inspiring video about Segovia. […]

Sharon Isbin’s : Classical Guitar Vibrato Technique

Here’s a video I came across in which Sharon Isbin talks about how she uses and applies vibrato. Vibrato is given to a note by applying and relaxing pressure to a string in a lateral direction. Lateral direction along the line of the string. The pressure towards the bridge with the hand motion coming towards […]

Brasilian Guitar Arrangements by Milos

Here are a couple of nice guitar arrangements of the popular Brasilian Bossa Novas: Girl From Ipanema and Mas Que Nada performed by Milos. Milos has exploded onto the classical guitar scene in recent years helped by heavy promotion by  Deutsch Gramophone. Much of the music he plays is Spanish and South American and his […]

Left Hand Thumb position

Many players are taught to keep their left hand thumb in a fairly stationary position behind the neck of the guitar whilst playing. In some ways it makes sense that in order to stay in position you need to have a reference point which is usually the thumb. The reference point refers to the lateral […]

Concerto De Aranjuez – Intro

Rodrigo’s Concerto De Aranjuez is an very well known spanish guitar work, though it’s the Adagio theme which people are most familiar with. Today we are going to be looking at the into to the first movement. The concerto starts with a series of rasguedo chords which are played in a 6/8 and 3/4 time […]

Major 7th Chords

Here are the main major chord shapes you can play on the guitar: Root 6 (Tonic on the 6th String) [wpcol_1half id=”” class=”” style=””] Root 5 (Tonic on the 5th String) [/wpcol_1half] [wpcol_1half_end id=”” class=”” style=””]Root 4 (Tonic on the 4th String) [/wpcol_1half_end] There are other major type chords with can often also be used […]

Segovia Guitar Scales: Gmajor and E Harmonic Minor

Here is the next instalment of the Segovia Guitar Scales, G major and E Harmonic Minor (3 Octaves). There are many ways to practice these scales, I would recommend a variety of Right Hand fingerings. Here are some suggestions: im, mi, am, ma, ia,ai, ip, pi, imam Rest Stroke or Free Stroke  

Matteo Carcassi (1792-1853)

Matteo Carcassi Summary Born in Florence, and lived in Paris, and Germany. Virtuoso guitarist and composer. toured Europe extensively Friend Meissonnier published many of his works. Wrote an important method The Carcassi Method Op 59 (Paris 1836) Op 60 : 25 studies are popular classical etudes. Contemporary of Carulli, Sor and Giuliani.

Batucada by Savio

Batucada has been around for some years now having been written by the great Brasilian teacher/guitarist Isaias Savio. I first heard the piece at a Milos concert last year. Here is a great version by Brassilian born guitarist Carlos Barbarosa Lima. A Batucada is a Brasilian dance often played in a group and forms part […]

Girl From Ipanema : Bossa Nova Chart and Info

The music Girl from Ipanema (also known as Garota De Ipanema) was written by Antonio Carlos Jobim in the 1962. This song became an international hit by the mid 1960s after it was recordeed by Stan Getz with Joao Gilberto on guitar and his wife Astrud on vocals.  

The Phrygian Mode – How to use this Flamenco Guitar Mode

The Phrygian mode is one of the main flamenco modes. It basically consists of the notes of the A minor scale starting on E. To add tension I also play G# on the 3rd string. This is very common in Spanish guitar. What are modes?   A scale will generally consist of seven notes. There […]

Right Hand Classical Guitar Technique

I spend a lot of time explaining my take on correct right hand classical guitar technique. In truth there is no one correct way but here we can go over the basic ideas. I will also show some examples of different players’ right hands and what I like about them. 1. The arm sits on […]