Suite yourself, my friend, but remember that the guitar is not a lute. The character of the sounds the two instruments produce and the capabilities each has make exploring keys one way to bring out the best in the music in relation to the medium used to convey it. That's my view, anyway.Guitar Slim Jr. wrote: ↑Tue Jul 18, 2017 7:21 pmSorry, just a little confused. If you' wouldn't transpose to preserve the original key, and you're not transposing for ease of playing, then what is the rationale for transposing at all? Are you saying that we,as guitarists, can make a Dowland masterpiece somehow more charming by rewriting it in a different key? I certainly wouldn't make that claim.
Usually in music we transpose to suit the instruments -- most common being to fit the range of a particular vocalist. Also, transposing is common when arranging -- as above -- again to suit the ensemble and possibly to increase the range. We also transpose to more guitar-friendly keys when transcribing music originally not written for guitar.
None of these apply to playing solo lute music on solo guitar. I really can't see any rationale for transposing a piece *already* written for guitar, by masters of the art.
Yes, ease of playing is often a reason for transposing. This piece by Bacheler (for 7-course renaissance lute) can be played with drop D in the key of D (which would be a direct transcription) but it is quite a bit easier to play in E.
That's an oversimplification. Dowland's Semper Dowland, Semper Dolens (hardly a 'simple tune') is generally rendered in B minor as a direct transcription from the lute stave, but the best arrangement I've come across is by Michael Lewin (and can be found in the Trinity College Grade 7 book from 1986 - 1989). This is in D minor (the way it would have sounded on a G lute) and so does not follow the original lute fingering.
As a side note, the short charming lute pieces are the ones I enjoy the most, and there are quite a lot of them! Ronn McFarlane did two full length CDs just of the short Scottish stuff alone, and there are some real gems among them, most of which have been rendered in different keys for different reasons by different people.
Good points. The only time I capo III is when I play David Qualey's modernized version of "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring", and when I work on Weiss' Ciacona in G Minor.Guitar Slim Jr. wrote: ↑Thu Jul 20, 2017 6:13 amOn a less argumentative note, and to address a question from the very first post: there are some possible possible reasons for preferring capo II to capo III. For one thing, it's a relatively easy and common position to transpose TO -- A becomes G, D becomes C, E becomes D. Several nice guitar keys are *still* nice guitar keys at capo II.
Pop guitarists like capo II for that reason, and also because the first two dots on the fretboard retain their relative position. In other words, at capo II there's still a dot at your virtual 3rd and 5th frets. Same applies if you've got dots on your classical, and having the dots in the right position is just as useful for reading as it is for comping.
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