V-L Prelude No 1: 2 fingers slidy up and down bit

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JohnB
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V-L Prelude No 1: 2 fingers slidy up and down bit

Post by JohnB » Sun Feb 19, 2017 4:20 pm

In Villa-Lobos Prelude No 1 there are 6 bars in the outer sections, following the third "climax" where the bass, played on the D string, moves down from D to B while two fingers of the left hand (usually 3 and 4) slide up and down on the G and E strings.

When I play these bars the bass notes (which carry the melody) end up with a great deal of slow motion, unintentional, pseudo "vibrato" as the 3 and 4 fingers move up and down the G and E strings.

How do others play this passage to minimise the effect?
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Julian Ward
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Re: V-L Prelude No 1: 2 fingers slidy up and down bit

Post by Julian Ward » Sun Feb 19, 2017 8:06 pm

Do you mean your finger one is doing unintentional vibrato and you don't want it to?

JohnB
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Re: V-L Prelude No 1: 2 fingers slidy up and down bit

Post by JohnB » Sun Feb 19, 2017 9:05 pm

Yes, the movement of 3 and 4 up and down a semitone inadvertantly causes the finger fretting the bass note to create a slow pseudo "vibrato". It is very evident if I play the passage with my left hand but only sound the bass note.

I guess that this effect is usually disguised by the treble notes, which most people emphasise somewhat, diverting the attention.
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Andrei Puhach
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Re: V-L Prelude No 1: 2 fingers slidy up and down bit

Post by Andrei Puhach » Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:19 pm

High tension strings help to somewhat mitigate this effect.
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lagartija
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Re: V-L Prelude No 1: 2 fingers slidy up and down bit

Post by lagartija » Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:59 pm

Hmmm... I actually strike the bass notes strongly there still considering it melody. The trebles are bright enough to hold their own.
Anyway, the motion I use is a combination of opening and closing the hand and moving my entire forearm as a unit to aid in doing this.
So the arm is helping to move fingers 2 and 4 or 3 and 4 (I can use either combination ) while finger one is held stationary. This is how my teacher taught me to do it. The arm motion was key in doing this at tempo.
The forearm is driving the stretch and compression of the fingers on the treble strings. The index finger is just chilling out....staying in place with no change in pressure or position.
I think that if you only try to open and close the hand without the forearm‘s help, you end up disturbing the index finger with the effort it takes. Try using your forearm if you haven’t yet and let us know.
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JohnB
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Re: V-L Prelude No 1: 2 fingers slidy up and down bit

Post by JohnB » Sat Dec 23, 2017 12:45 am

Thanks for the idea about using the forearm - I will definitely try that out.

(And I agree that the bass notes in that passage are still part of the melody.)
Hermanos Conde 1968, Stephen Frith 2007 "Guijoso"

tcrist
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Re: V-L Prelude No 1: 2 fingers slidy up and down bit

Post by tcrist » Sat Dec 30, 2017 10:06 pm

Yes! What lagartija said above. Use 3 and 4, and think of it as a shift back and forth between the 10th and 11th frets. Keep your index relaxed so it stays put but is not stiff. Watch Williams play it.

Andre
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Re: V-L Prelude No 1: 2 fingers slidy up and down bit

Post by Andre » Mon Jan 01, 2018 1:40 pm

Any consideration from you folks to eliminate the parallel sixths altogether in the chromatic descent (i.e. moving only the 4th finger) and only using them at the very end when the index arrives at the B? Like so:
Image

That might alleviate the unwanted vibrato even more.
This was a change to the original that was suggested to Villa-Lobos by Abel Carlevaro, and one which he (allegedly) gladly accepted.
I also note that a number of pros, albeit not all of them, have adopted this change in that particular section.
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Desperado
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Re: V-L Prelude No 1: 2 fingers slidy up and down bit

Post by Desperado » Mon Jan 01, 2018 1:51 pm

Sounds like too much tension/pressure in the left hand. Try some indepence exercises with 1 as a fixed finger may help or just moving position down and up the neck playing the same passage- as you descend the passage obviously gets harder - this may streghthen the 3&4 fingers . Also the block chords in the right hand need a wee bit of tension in the right arm this can inadvertently effect the relaxation of the left hand.

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