Originally this was composed for Spanish Guitar with Castanets accompaniment. Receiving feedback from a CF expert (i.e. Socrates) it seems that the guitarist would have to grow another couple of fingers or so to play it. So here it is for piano - it's clearly supposed to have a very Spanish feel about it, hence the complex rhythms and choice of harmonic structure - can anyone make any recommendations as to how it might be orchestrated? Maybe it sits OK as it is - or it could be arranged for two or more guitarists or solo violin with lower strings accompaniment or whatever.
Comments, criticisms, advice - all would be welcome.
Many thanks for taking the time out to listen.
Sadly I don't have the time available to study classical guitar to a level that will enable me to write for it comfortably. I'm hoping that a kind soul with sufficient knowledge might pop out of the woodwork and offer to do it for me!
The original with castanets sounded like a one-legged donkey trundling aimlessly around a courtyard - all a bit pastiche for my liking.
The people for whom I wrote it all seem fairly pleased and tell me they have danced to it around the clubhouse post-golf - so probably under the influence.
Job done then.
The resident CF expert on guitar is Socrates Arvanitakis - if he can find time I'm sure he'd advise you.
So little to be commented upon, Stephen. It goes along at a brisk, bright pace, panache, probably isn’t easy to play…there’s some tricky fingering there to play it with verve – thank you for presenting the score so I could see what’s expected! You’d also need pretty nifty wrist staccato!
Another accomplished work commanding attention – classical, might I suggest from the development you include?
Nice if you could arrange it for guitar. Has the vivacity of some of Moreno Torroba, Albeniz and the like but as your commenter says, not easy to play. Now, if Liszt had tried his hand at guitar….!
A pleasure to listen to. Thank you.
Liszt of course had fingers the length of the average lamppost and the dexterity of ummm - well, Liszt I suppose. Thank you Dane for your kind comments (again), I'm very pleased that you like the piece.
Dane Aubrun said:
Guys. May I suggest that if you don't know the instrument, don't write for it.
I feel this piece would be successful as a full on piano piece. But not in this present form.
Jon, a guitar can play any chord you can think of, as well as some you can't think of. But if you want it to sound authentic, you can't just write a triad. You need to know what order and inversion is possible. If you are writing for real players, all the guitar player needs is the chord names if the part is accompaniment.
What form do you suggest Bob? Is it fair for me to assume you're a pianist as well as a guitarist? I must admit I know nothing very much at all about fretted instruments but couldn't resist trying. It wasn't until Socrates commented that I came to realise guitarists' have only a mixture of ten fingers and thumbs just like the rest of humanity.
Bob Porter said:
Nothing wrong with giving a guitar piece a shot. Did you happen to watch some players, or look at some guitar music first?
Your piece could be for whatever instrument you want. I don't believe that music has to be flashy or complicated to be good. But it does have to fit the instrument and be well written.
Take the Moonlight Sonata. It is within the reach of an intermediate player. Yet it is one of the most beautiful pieces ever written.
Computers give us the ability to do things previously impossible. That's a good thing. But the responsibility is still ours to write good music.
Ah yes, my avatar. I forgot. I am right handed. The photo is flipped around because I liked the composition better. As a matter of interest, though probably only to me, that guitar is one I built. What a hoot. But I don't write for guitar, nor would I profess to be very good at playing it. But I do know a bit about it. Michael, the only question I have about your harp parts being playable is that what if someone picks up your piece 50 years from now and finds it to be a head scratcher?
I grew up as a instrumentalist in band and orchestra. Those are the instruments I know how to work with. Even so, I seldom write anything very difficult. Not so that lesser musicians can play it, but so that better musicians can make real music of it. Any hack, such as myself, might be able to play a chord progression, but a real player can play that same progression and make us weep.
Hi Stephen, I like what you have written here. It does have a flamenco/Spanish classical guitar flavor which is appealing and well written so you have achieved your goal I believe. I think piano is fine for this, there are certainly examples from the literature.
I studied classical guitar for a few years and then became interested in jazz and popular styles so I don't maintain a classical repertoire (or technique) anymore. I haven't posted examples of my playing on CF because of copyright issues with my recorded pieces. (They are my arrangements of material written by others.)
When I look at your score I think, "Oh this is playable, I can even sight read some of it." Then I remember that this is concert pitch and so when transposed some of it will get shoved up to the cramped space above the 12th fret where everything is treacherously difficult. And then there is the range issue, our 3 - 1/2 octave guitar range is missing some notes on both ends so even with two normal guitars there would be issues with that. So a guitar arrangement would have to make some changes.
You might add some strum (broken chord/arpeggio) markings to your chords here and there. Guitarists love that stuff!
Nice work here. I guess any comments on augmentation would be only opinions and subjective. I feel like I say that a lot lol.
If you really want guitar I suggest something very simple. Make it a duet.
Thanks Timothy for your useful comments. I suggested earlier that maybe it could be adapted for two guitars in order to simplify the performance of the piece. But, as has also been noted, some of the notes are outside the range of the Flamenco Guitar (tuned strings being E A D G B E) so having two of them wouldn't help in this instance.
I think as this was only a one-off composition for friends (of many nationalities) in Spain it would be pointless my rearranging the piece to make it playable on the guitar (altering the range, the key, the notations etc.) so will settle for it being performed on the piano. Of course if it were my intention to write more for the guitar I would spend a couple of months carefully studying the instrument.
Timothy Smith said: