Tone production

Classical Guitar technique: studies, scales, arpeggios, theory
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rafitas123
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Re: Tone production

Post by rafitas123 » Thu Jul 06, 2017 9:23 pm

wchymeus wrote:
Thu Jul 06, 2017 9:09 pm
Rafael,

It's really a good thing that you reflect on your playing and among other things your "sound". I guess you shared your concerns with your teacher and s/he probably did not offer you a satisfying answer... or maybe s/he did but you were not paying enough attention? ...
After watching your video, I believe you can definitely improve your right hand technique. I suggest you have a look at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJ36c3_6jks&t=299s
Also, do some research on "planting" and finger preparation.
I also recommend you try to follow a master class... I had the privilege to follow some with Celino Romero, Pepe Romero and Roland Dyens. I always had the impression each time that my level was way too below what these masters would expect, but they all kindly offer precious advices and many of them were on my right hand technique (and maybe like you, I had a teacher back then and he focused more his attention on my left hand technique...).
Dear Wchymeus,

I still have not spoken with my teacher about this concern. I only realize this issue recently and since I am on my university vacation I could not get in touch with him :( . I will watch the video you send and search for these terms. Regarding the masterclasses I need to find around I live at the moment :lol: . But since I am on holidays I can travel around a bit to attend those :) .

The more you take something seriously the more you need to keep yourself satisfied! :lol:

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Yisrael van Handel
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Re: Tone production

Post by Yisrael van Handel » Fri Jul 07, 2017 12:01 pm

rafitas123 wrote:
Thu Jul 06, 2017 9:05 pm
I will definitively read this book!
Can you read Spanish?
Yisrael van Handel
Modi'in Ilit, Israel

rafitas123
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Re: Tone production

Post by rafitas123 » Fri Jul 07, 2017 2:53 pm

Yisrael van Handel wrote:
Fri Jul 07, 2017 12:01 pm
rafitas123 wrote:
Thu Jul 06, 2017 9:05 pm
I will definitively read this book!
Can you read Spanish?
A bit, but being a native portuguese speaker spanish is very similar!

Rognvald
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Re: Tone production

Post by Rognvald » Wed Jul 26, 2017 3:46 pm

Rafitas,
I'm going to tell you something that has nothing to do with technique . . . taking for granted that you ARE using it correctly. Much in music is personality and I have found with all musicians that your personality dictates your tone production. Generally speaking(yes, of course, there are always exceptions in life), bold people play boldly, timid people play timidly, and there are those who fall in the middle. And, if you're a boring person . . . guess what? There's a well recognized CG player in Chicago who performs regularly and has some impressive academic credentials. I saw him perform with another local player, Paul Moeller, at a concert venue in our area. He opened the concert and played a fairly wide range of pieces and ended with a Brazilian piece--the name of which I can't remember. I have never been so bored by a player in my life because although he played technically perfect, there was no humanity, style or personality to his "music." His sound was weak and thin. I call it machine music. He was in his forties at the time. However, Moeller, a young man about 21 at the time, captivated the stage with his sound, interpretation and warmth and after he finished, I remained in my seat long after the crowd had left to fully digest his beautiful artistic performance. Tone production? This is much more than technique. Playing again . . . Rognvald
"And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music." Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus Spake Zarathustra

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Stephen Kenyon
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Re: Tone production

Post by Stephen Kenyon » Wed Jul 26, 2017 4:34 pm

rafitas123 wrote:
Thu Jul 06, 2017 7:37 pm
Hi Agnes,
Thank you for your tips! I did not knew about the problem of the left hand finger being too close to the fret I was thought it was ideal to get a clear sound!
Btw, I just recorded a fragment of the prelude n4 by Villa Lobos. Could you give a look and tell me some points of improvement, the piece is getting quite fluid but I see my interpretation as a bit dull xD.
https://youtu.be/HJme55CHvrk
Best regards,
Rafael
LH by the fret, yes it has to be close enough to the fret to keep the note clean, the suggestion was if it is so close it rides up onto the fret, there is a problem then. It can also be a matter of better intonation, esp in higher positions.
Your video sound is a little poor to be able to tell really what's going on, but certainly when you play a high single note with your middle finger the tone is far from ideal. I would like to contradict the above post that suggests nail shape is not important. It really really is!
Also re your video, it sounds to me like some of your left hand chord transitions are clipped, e.g. you don't always keep the value of the chord just before a shift. Deal with that stuff as well as thinking about your right hand 8)
Simon Ambridge Series 40 (2005)
Trevor Semple Series 88 (1992)
Louis Panormo (1838)
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Rick Beauregard
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Re: Tone production

Post by Rick Beauregard » Wed Jul 26, 2017 6:58 pm

Different piece, but I like this tutorial by Simon Powis on Capricho Arabe: https://youtu.be/e8FQDdc2ORQ

In it he stresses to learn the music and correct rhythms as written first, by by carefully counting, before trying too much interpretation and phrasing. He Even suggests not listening to recordings of other's interpretations because these stick in your head. This is a weakness I have with well known pieces.

Going back to the original question though I think your tone production can also use some tweeking and coaching. I had the benefit of a great teacher (now deceased), and protege of Pepe Romero, who was a stickler for tone production, as all great teachers are.

I think it was Pepe who said it, but one helpful suggestion I heard was to think of your sound techniques as if on a thumb drive. Search for the tone you're seeking and when you hear it, press "save" and then play it over and over. When you hear that aweful screechy tone press "delete" and get it off your disk drive forever.
All this time I thought I was making music; it was making me.
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rafitas123
Posts: 26
Joined: Wed May 03, 2017 3:27 pm

Re: Tone production

Post by rafitas123 » Thu Jul 27, 2017 8:24 pm

Rognvald wrote:
Wed Jul 26, 2017 3:46 pm
Rafitas,
I'm going to tell you something that has nothing to do with technique . . . taking for granted that you ARE using it correctly. Much in music is personality and I have found with all musicians that your personality dictates your tone production. Generally speaking(yes, of course, there are always exceptions in life), bold people play boldly, timid people play timidly, and there are those who fall in the middle. And, if you're a boring person . . . guess what? There's a well recognized CG player in Chicago who performs regularly and has some impressive academic credentials. I saw him perform with another local player, Paul Moeller, at a concert venue in our area. He opened the concert and played a fairly wide range of pieces and ended with a Brazilian piece--the name of which I can't remember. I have never been so bored by a player in my life because although he played technically perfect, there was no humanity, style or personality to his "music." His sound was weak and thin. I call it machine music. He was in his forties at the time. However, Moeller, a young man about 21 at the time, captivated the stage with his sound, interpretation and warmth and after he finished, I remained in my seat long after the crowd had left to fully digest his beautiful artistic performance. Tone production? This is much more than technique. Playing again . . . Rognvald
Dear Rognvald,

I completely agree with you! At moment I am in search for my own sound and with that myself :). However, there is still a long way until I perfect my technique and find this sound!

Thank you,
Rafael

rafitas123
Posts: 26
Joined: Wed May 03, 2017 3:27 pm

Re: Tone production

Post by rafitas123 » Thu Jul 27, 2017 8:35 pm

Stephen Kenyon wrote:
Wed Jul 26, 2017 4:34 pm
rafitas123 wrote:
Thu Jul 06, 2017 7:37 pm
Hi Agnes,
Thank you for your tips! I did not knew about the problem of the left hand finger being too close to the fret I was thought it was ideal to get a clear sound!
Btw, I just recorded a fragment of the prelude n4 by Villa Lobos. Could you give a look and tell me some points of improvement, the piece is getting quite fluid but I see my interpretation as a bit dull xD.
https://youtu.be/HJme55CHvrk
Best regards,
Rafael
LH by the fret, yes it has to be close enough to the fret to keep the note clean, the suggestion was if it is so close it rides up onto the fret, there is a problem then. It can also be a matter of better intonation, esp in higher positions.
Your video sound is a little poor to be able to tell really what's going on, but certainly when you play a high single note with your middle finger the tone is far from ideal. I would like to contradict the above post that suggests nail shape is not important. It really really is!
Also re your video, it sounds to me like some of your left hand chord transitions are clipped, e.g. you don't always keep the value of the chord just before a shift. Deal with that stuff as well as thinking about your right hand 8)
Dear Stephen,

In these last weeks I have been trying to improve my tone and notion of dynamics. I went through some books to understand how to work out better this issue (Pumping Nylon, Tone Production on Classical Guitar and the Metodologia de estudio para la ejecucion e interpretacion de la guitarra clasica). Reading them I felt that I needed to reshape my nails, change the way I tackle the strings and make some exercises to improve my playing. I quickly recorded another version of the prelude as you asked (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IR0wg0V ... e=youtu.be).

What should I do to solve this issue? I am in at my parents home for vacation, so I don't have access to my teacher.

Thank you for your attention,
Rafael

rafitas123
Posts: 26
Joined: Wed May 03, 2017 3:27 pm

Re: Tone production

Post by rafitas123 » Thu Jul 27, 2017 8:53 pm

Rick Beauregard wrote:
Wed Jul 26, 2017 6:58 pm
Different piece, but I like this tutorial by Simon Powis on Capricho Arabe: https://youtu.be/e8FQDdc2ORQ

In it he stresses to learn the music and correct rhythms as written first, by by carefully counting, before trying too much interpretation and phrasing. He Even suggests not listening to recordings of other's interpretations because these stick in your head. This is a weakness I have with well known pieces.

Going back to the original question though I think your tone production can also use some tweeking and coaching. I had the benefit of a great teacher (now deceased), and protege of Pepe Romero, who was a stickler for tone production, as all great teachers are.

I think it was Pepe who said it, but one helpful suggestion I heard was to think of your sound techniques as if on a thumb drive. Search for the tone you're seeking and when you hear it, press "save" and then play it over and over. When you hear that aweful screechy tone press "delete" and get it off your disk drive forever.
Hi Rick,

Thank you for the indication of the video, it is very detailed and a great tool for further studies! Regarding the tone, I also believe it is a trial and error process. Once you find it you got it :lol:

Thank you for the video and recommending me this awesome channel!

Best regards,
Rafael

Peskyendeavour
Posts: 119
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Re: Tone production

Post by Peskyendeavour » Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:42 pm

I'm not qualified to comment really, but I would point to YouTube master classes by Julian Bream on Villa Lobos - since that is what you offered - but there are many others other than this:
https://youtu.be/-o8qBKnLtsA

I think in one of them, I don't know which he mentions that each note should be produced with love... However fast don't rush it or move until it has sounded with emotion - or something like that, I can't remember the exact words. Just go and watch all of them, sure there's something to pick up from the masters! If not Julian, then Segovia, Pepe, Roland, there are a lot of YouTube master classes if you look for them.

Hope this helps in some small way - I'm no teacher nor critic.

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Stephen Kenyon
Teacher
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Re: Tone production

Post by Stephen Kenyon » Fri Jul 28, 2017 12:04 am

rafitas123 wrote:
Thu Jul 27, 2017 8:35 pm
...
In these last weeks I have been trying to improve my tone and notion of dynamics. I went through some books to understand how to work out better this issue (Pumping Nylon, Tone Production on Classical Guitar and the Metodologia de estudio para la ejecucion e interpretacion de la guitarra clasica). Reading them I felt that I needed to reshape my nails, change the way I tackle the strings and make some exercises to improve my playing. I quickly recorded another version of the prelude as you asked (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IR0wg0V ... e=youtu.be).

What should I do to solve this issue? I am in at my parents home for vacation, so I don't have access to my teacher.

Thank you for your attention,
Rafael
That's more like it, now needs to be smoother, there's lots of irregularity in the rhythm there. Also, try to keep the right hand in the shot, so we can see what's happening!
Simon Ambridge Series 40 (2005)
Trevor Semple Series 88 (1992)
Louis Panormo (1838)
Alexander Batov Baroque Guitar (2013)

rafitas123
Posts: 26
Joined: Wed May 03, 2017 3:27 pm

Re: Tone production

Post by rafitas123 » Sat Jul 29, 2017 8:50 pm

Peskyendeavour wrote:
Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:42 pm
I'm not qualified to comment really, but I would point to YouTube master classes by Julian Bream on Villa Lobos - since that is what you offered - but there are many others other than this:
https://youtu.be/-o8qBKnLtsA

I think in one of them, I don't know which he mentions that each note should be produced with love... However fast don't rush it or move until it has sounded with emotion - or something like that, I can't remember the exact words. Just go and watch all of them, sure there's something to pick up from the masters! If not Julian, then Segovia, Pepe, Roland, there are a lot of YouTube master classes if you look for them.

Hope this helps in some small way - I'm no teacher nor critic.
I am going to search them, going back to these masters is always an excellent idea!

rafitas123
Posts: 26
Joined: Wed May 03, 2017 3:27 pm

Re: Tone production

Post by rafitas123 » Sat Jul 29, 2017 8:52 pm

Stephen Kenyon wrote:
Fri Jul 28, 2017 12:04 am
That's more like it, now needs to be smoother, there's lots of irregularity in the rhythm there. Also, try to keep the right hand in the shot, so we can see what's happening!
I will work out my rhythm! After I do I will upload another version of the piece :)

Andrei Puhach
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Re: Tone production

Post by Andrei Puhach » Wed Aug 30, 2017 9:23 pm

What helped me tremendously in tone production was using a heated spoon to unhook nails (so that nail tips don't look down when observing from a side). There are some topic on Delcamp about this, but in short you heat a spoon with a lighter, put some protective cloth (or sandpaper) on it, put it under the nail and apply some pressure upwards (assuming your fingerpad looks down).
This was more important to me than proper shaping and polishing (which I still do of course) because if a nail catches the string polishing is of no help here.
Not only tone improved but it also made playing so much easier and more controllable.
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kmurdick
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Re: Tone production

Post by kmurdick » Fri Sep 01, 2017 1:02 am

I watched the video and would say offhand that you are not moving enough from the large knuckle joint. That joint (more or less) brings the finger tip to the string and depresses the string into to top of the guitar and supports the stroke while the middle joint flexes. The middle and the large knuckle joints have approximately the same range of motion in the free stroke. You should also start with a completely relaxed tip joint and experiment later with adding tension there. The instant the string is plucked you should release the finger so it can return naturally to begin the stroke again (avoid any following through to the palm). For a more thorough explanations watch the thread at this list: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=80875

If you watch and read the first 20 pages of the above post you will get all the info there. Be careful about knowing too much in the beginning. There are three ways to look at right hand guitar technique: there is what it looks like, there is what it feels like and there is what actually happens. Sometimes all three are different.

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