Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

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jscott
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Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by jscott » Sat Nov 24, 2018 2:04 am

I've always (tried to) play the third measure by plucking the open E and F and quickly sliding up to the A on the 4th string, and then play the rest of the passage at this upper position. But I notice that Berta Rojas and others forgo the slide and play the initial A in the first position and then the rest of the fingerings around this. I like the effect of the slide and think it's appropriate, but it's hit or miss for me in terms of playing the opening notes of the melody in a convincing manner when I do this. I've been playing with Rojas' approach and I think that it's easier to bring out the melody in this lower position, plus there's no big jump to the c sharp at the end of the fourth measure.


What do others do?
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riffmeister
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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by riffmeister » Sat Nov 24, 2018 2:49 am

Slide for me. Starting at F#.

jscott
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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by jscott » Sat Nov 24, 2018 3:29 am

yep f# of course.

comparing the two approaches I find that trying to play the opening notes of the melody on the D string and then carrying it over to be played on the b and e strings creates problems in tonal continuity. Clearly Berta Rojas is capable of playing it this way but prefers not to. Hmmm...

I don't think my teacher will go for this however...
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mvisscher
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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by mvisscher » Sat Nov 24, 2018 4:52 am

..or do both. Play the passage in the lower position after the intro, but when you return for the D.C. take more time and do the upper the position with a warmer tone and lots of vibrato.

richtm
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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by richtm » Sat Nov 24, 2018 5:21 am

The sliding makes it more romantical, so I very much like this effect. There is a Performance out on YT by Jason Vieaux



which I find pretty optimal. But I think it's more a matter of taste than on musicality
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RobMacKillop
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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by RobMacKillop » Sat Nov 24, 2018 8:48 am

There was a movement in the 1980s to remove all the slides - or most of them - from the Romantic repertoire, from those who saught a more piano-like sound. This coincided with guitars becoming louder. It moved further and further away from the intimate sound of Tárrega to Barrios, who would have used silk-core bass strings, which had fewer upper partials than modern bass strings, i.e. much less squeak.

So, if you use slides on modern strings, you have to do your best to avoid squeaks by sliding not with the tip of your fingers, but the softer part between the tip and the first joint. That's not always easy or possible, however. It can be problematical, which is why some players leave them out.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again, I do not believe in progress when it comes to musical instruments, string technology, and interpretation. Things are not better or worse now, just different. But problems do arise when trying to play 100-year old music on a new guitar.

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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by jscott » Sat Nov 24, 2018 3:45 pm

I certainly prefer Vieaux's tempo to the 'too hurried' speed of most performances. Perhaps he milks the pauses a bit much--or not.

I'm not sure that Berta Rojas has a piano like sound, or that she's stripped the piece of its romanticism--which Rob definitely did NOT say! But the historical movement that he mentions is interesting for sure. There's a lesson on Julia over on Tonebase right now. The slide is omitted and there's not even a mention of the option. I wonder if an autograph version that lacks the slide exists?
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riffmeister
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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by riffmeister » Sat Nov 24, 2018 5:31 pm

I think the slides....there are several....add to the immense charm of this piece.

I also play the first two measures at a slightly slower tempo and with a ritardando at the end of the second measure to make for a "romantic" effect....the slightly quicker tempo of the rest of the piece then begins at the third measure with that first slide.

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Mark Clifton-Gaultier
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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by Mark Clifton-Gaultier » Sat Nov 24, 2018 6:44 pm

jscott wrote:I wonder if an autograph version that lacks the slide exists?
There are (at least) two extant MSS of Julia Florida, one from 1938 in Costa Rica, the other 1942 in El Salvador. There are some differences between them but they share similar musical calligraphy and autographs - the textual content however suggests different hands.

Some time ago Richard Stover indicated that the 1942 MS is indeed a Barrios autograph whilst an unspecified "earlier version" is not. However, Stover also states that Barrios composed the work during December 1938. The earlier MS is signed off: San Jose de Costa Rica - Navidad 1938, perhaps there is another "early" copy? A further autograph MS has been unearthed in Paraguay - I have not yet seen it for comparison.

The 1938 and 1942 scores both include the F#-A ornamental glissando. The F# is indicated as slashed grace note (acciaccatura) in both instances though stylistic considerations would commonly lead us to interpret it more lazily than is usual for a "crushed" note.

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Christopher Freitag
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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by Christopher Freitag » Sat Nov 24, 2018 10:30 pm

I studied this piece with Jason Vieaux this summer. He did not object to my approach, which is not to play the slide the first time but to play it the second. I like this especially on the return to the A section which I play quite softly...almost tentatively. Then the repeat is more confident and the slide is more appropriate there.

I think it can be beautiful with or without the slide, so do what sounds best to you.
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wchymeus
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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by wchymeus » Mon Nov 26, 2018 7:17 am

Isn't that slide giving the feel of a rowing boat? It's a barcarolle after all ...
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Telespargel
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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by Telespargel » Mon Nov 26, 2018 2:52 pm

I prefer the slides.
For the fingering I mostly follow Edson Lopes

riffmeister
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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by riffmeister » Mon Nov 26, 2018 4:36 pm

richtm wrote:
Sat Nov 24, 2018 5:21 am
The sliding makes it more romantical, so I very much like this effect. There is a Performance out on YT by Jason Vieaux



which I find pretty optimal. But I think it's more a matter of taste than on musicality
Huh. Jason plays an F natural instead of F# as written in measure 47 (2:51 in the recording) of the Stover edition.

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Christopher Freitag
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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by Christopher Freitag » Mon Nov 26, 2018 5:05 pm

riffmeister wrote:
Mon Nov 26, 2018 4:36 pm


Huh. Jason plays an F natural instead of F# as written in measure 47 (2:51 in the recording) of the Stover edition.
Yes, but he has since changed it to an F natural after seeing the MS copies that I showed him. The Stover edition has it wrong.
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Julian Ward
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Re: Julia Florida--slide to 'a' in third measure

Post by Julian Ward » Mon Nov 26, 2018 6:05 pm

^^Do you mean he has since changed it to an F#?
I really like the way Jason plays it. I have played it with the slide but with it isolated from the bass note, and then added the bass note in line with the A instead. I have experimented with many slides in the Romantic repertoire, some people loathe them (they sound awful in Caprchio Arabe for example where nearly every player leaves them out, but they are meant to be there). I do much prefer the colour of the 4th string A rather than the third, where Berta plays it. I don't really like the way she plays the piece too much to be honest.
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