I have been playing the classical guitar since I was about 6 or 7, and whilst other instruments have come and gone in my life, this is one of the few that has remained! I now not only enjoy still playing this instrument, but also offering lessons for the classical guitar. Nottingham is one of the areas I cover.
A few well known composers of classical guitar music are Andres Segovia, Villa Lobos, Francisco Tarrega, Joaquin Rodrigo, and they are constantly included in classical guitar concerts and repertoire. Classical Gas by Mason Williams is perhaps the most well known contemporary classical guitar piece. The Classical guitar is sometimes referred to as the “Spanish” guitar, and whilst there are many Spanish pieces composed for the classical guitar (including Flamenco guitar), this is by no means the extent of its flexibility!
www.YouTube.com, if searched for the string “classical guitar songs” will go a long way to illustrate the adaptability of this astounding instrument, with arrangements of tunes and songs such as the Pink Panther, computer game themes such as Super Mario Bros, Pirates of the Caribbean, as well as versions of rock and popular songs, for example Annie’s Song, and Bohemian Rhapsody – yes the one by Queen! You can perform any style of music or song on a classical guitar, just as you can on an instrument such as a piano.
There are electric guitars, acoustic guitars, and then the classical guitar – in fact so many styles of guitar playing that it is sometimes difficult to tell which is which!
How can you identify a classical guitar? The classical guitar is often mixed up with the acoustic guitar, but the key variation is that the classical guitar strings are nylon. Acoustic guitar strings are made from steel and may be referred to as “steel string” guitars. The make-up of the guitar’s interior is also different, even if to visually compare, they look alike – you could describe it as the differences or similarities between a Horse and a Zebra!
There is little that can compete with the sound of a classical guitar in the hands of an expert guitarist, and there have been some disagreements between people who are new to listening to classical guitar music who could not quite grasp that it was being performed by just one person!
Whilst it can be relatively easy to play the acoustic guitar quite loudly with the assistance of a plectrum, at one concert in 2008 where I saw Mark Ashford – Classical Guitarist, in a room which was adjacent to the Bell Tower of Lincoln Cathedral, the cathedral bells had a difficult task to be heard over Mr Ashford’s fantastic guitar playing – without the aid of electricity or speakers!
If you would like to know more about learning to play the classical guitar, please contact me to arrange a chat or a lesson. It does take time and dedication to truly master the classical guitar; however you will soon be playing quite beautiful sounding pieces with a little guidance and practise!