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Andreas Segovia, Narciso Yepes, FrancisoTarrega

by James McCutcheon
(Decatur, Alabama, USA)

Segovia built a repertoire and performed it world wide. His work and dedication created a desire for many to hear and play this special guitar. He alone, captured the extreme personal connection from the music, the unique tone and unbelieveable sound production to audiences. Although the early recordings were not very good, this did not matter. The live performances created the "Classical Guitar" EXPLOSION we see today world wide!


Narcisco Yepes, never yielded to 6 strings, his unmatched performances on the 10 string classical guitar have never been touched by any Guitarist in the world and his performances on this 10 string are stunning. A speciality of deliverance of sounds unlike any other guitarist before; I feel he does not get recognized adequately.

Franciso Tarrega, created wonderful music for the modern Classical Guitar. I believe he sought not to perform others music because his love for Classical Guitar was filled with melodies just for the guitar. His intermediate pieces bring people into a LOVE for the SOUND of the modern classical guitar. Examples are Adelita, and Lagrima, the touch of sound from the 1st fret to through the 12th fret. I feel his true natural drive was to Create new music for the modern classical Guitar.

Tarrega's teachers were the best in the world during his early life. True masters of composing and performing. Miguel Llobet was awesomely the "guitars" ultimate work force in compositional structuring. The beauty of Tarrega's compositions they are not transcriptions of another instrument restructured for Guitar.

There is much more to say. The music, the instrument and the artists say it alone.

Their efforts, have created the Guitarists of today's world and has created world competition and the best pedagogical learning tools in a single century.

Master classes will always be the "KEY" to ultimate mastery.

Sincerely,
James McCutcheon

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Andre Segovia: God and gods

by David
(Chicago)

There are guitar gods and then there is the guitar God, Andre Segovia el maestro. His contributions to the art and elevation of acoustic guitar are greater than any other guitarist in the twentieth-century. He is a giant standing over all others. In his youth his technique was flawless. In his maturity his tone capable of making the instrument weep, sing, laugh, gossip, talk to us in a thunder, caress us with tenderness and wisdom. No one else since has accomplished what this genius has for the guitar.

Under his shadows, artists of this instrument must find what stage light they can, steal some here and there, and prove themselves worthy to hold the instrument in their hands. It is the wake call to go from listening to ones favorite recording, to picking up a guitar and trying what seems impossible. Tone, clarity, musicality, technique, and the maturity and life experience to speak well are all demanded. If you are lacking just one, then you are a amateur.

John Williams is such a fantastic warrior of the guitar that he has been able through his perfect technique to bring the acoustic guitar into an age of electric guitars. His tone is clean and singing, his scales fast. He champions not only solo craft, but like a great master of the instrument brings in other voices and traditions. He never fails to impress.

Julian Bream is other-worldly. His touch is delicate and full of legato and cantabile. He uses vibrato to break hard lines and his tempo is always dead on. His voice at the fret board is warm and conversational. It is highly unique in sound. His style unique, distinctive, and because of his singing tone, he elevates the instrument in ways that have not been heard since Segovia.

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Jun 24, 2012
Segovia is no god
by: Jeff

Actually Andres Segovia is a very controversial guitarist

http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Andr%E9s_Segovia&oldid=374925242#Controversy_regarding_Segovia

Dec 30, 2011
Enjoyable read.
by: Dave

Hello David, Thank you for posting on Your Classical Guitar Input Here, I really enjoyed reading who your favourite Classical guitarist are, Two of your favourites are the same as mine, Andre Segovia and John Williams, My third choice would be Francisco Tarrega, Who's works can be considered the foundation of modern guitar technique.

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Segovia: "I have nothing to teach her ... "

by Bertil Flink
(Sweden)

Even at the age of 13 Andres Segovia declared "I have nothing to teach her ... she should not accept the advice of any other guitarist".

"She" was of course Ida Presti.

More:

http://www.musiconearth.co.uk/Pages/presti.htm

---

Julian Bream
http://www.musiconearth.co.uk/bream/index.htm

---

Paco de Lucia

---

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Oct 19, 2009
Ida Presti DVD in development
by: Bertil Flink

Finally development of the Ida Presti DVD is back on track. Check out the latest info here:
http://www.musiconearth.co.uk/Pages/presti.htm

I studied for Alice Artz many years ago and enjoyed the privilege to decicate a ragtime piece to her. She returned the favor by adding it to her repertoire for a while.

She was a student of Ida Presti and demonstrated Ida's powerful and unique right hand technique, which was unusual to us back then. I never adapted the technique myself, which involved stiking the string with the right side of the nail instead of the left. You can see Alice demonstrate Ida's style on You Tube if you're interested:

http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=359F5401FA0AD72C

Cheers,
Bertil

Oct 19, 2009
Total agreement
by: Randall

Presti & Lagoya remain my favorite guitar recordings. I have watched some poor quality videos of them on youtube. Even there, the brilliance is heard.

Years ago I went to a master class with Evangelos & Liza, who I think might have studied with P & L. They were and are very good, but still I favor Presti & Lagoya.

I don't recall who you put for your #2 and 3! There are so many, really. I studied with a student of Celedonio & Celin Romero so have always enjoyed listening to the Romeros in their various configurations.

Bream was the first I ever heard, I think, and his recording of Aranjuez has always been special to me, though certainly others have done it well also.

Oddly, there are others I prefer to listen to over Segovia, but he is certainly among the best.

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Segovia, Yepes, Yamashita

by Abel
(Argentina)

. Andrés Segovia, for he's still the most expressive and solid guitarist of all and for making the guitar the great classical instrument it is nowadays.

. Narciso Yepes, for his colorful and clean way of playing.

. Kazuhito Yamashita, for he expanded the guitar to new and beautiful limits.

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shadow walker

by archie
(Huntington, W.V. USA)

Andres Segovia, Sharon Isbin, and Karin Schaupp

Andres Segovia is the best and always will be in my way of thinking. Sharon Isbin is also a great gutarist and has many sounds and moods in her music and far in the back ground one can almost hear Andres Segovia playing as well. Karin Schaupp has a way with her music that lifts the sprit and is such a delight to listen to.

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Oct 05, 2007
Great Comments
by: Anonymous

I'd almost forgotten about Karin Schaupp. Thanks for reminding me and you are definitely right.

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Bob

by Bob
(Brisbane Qld Australia)

1.Andres Segovia
2. John Williams
3. David Russell

I've chosen them because they are tried and proven and I echo most of the reasons put forward by others.

I would like to throw in some others who could soon be the successors to the above...

Aniello Desiderio, Per Olav Kindgren, Karin Schaupp, John Clarke, Edgar Cruz and the virtuoso Stepan Rak.

These are just the tip of the iceberg of fantastic unheralded guitarists which include our own Trevor Maurice and my 80 year old teacher Wal Vanek who just astounds me as to his expertise and knowledge.

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True Masters Exist Today

1. Andres Segovia

I like the work of Andres Segovia because he truly understood the physics of the classical guitar and was able to enjoin himself with the instrument. By watching old videos of his performances, he barely flinched, his face showing very little expression, yet his music expressed exactly what his face didn't. Obviously a brilliant technical interpreter of all forms of classical music. He was "one" with the guitar.

2. Julian Bream

Bream interpretations are amazing. A true giant of the classical guitar. This fearless artist would tackle anything.

3. David Brandon

A student of Andres Segovia who teaches classical guitar in Texas. A brilliant virtuoso who was born with a natural talent. His recordings are incredible and his technique is very confident and smooth. A TRUE MASTER OF THE CLASSICAL GUITAR!!

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LobsterFingers Galore

by Jose Ruiz
(Los Angeles CA)

Segovia - Number one - what other reason is there?

John Williams - Has tremedous feeling and inspiration

Christopher Parkening - Master of precision and technique

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Nov 03, 2007
3 Heavy Weights
by: Anonymous

Good choice!

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Wow - limited to three!!!

by Joseph Fisher
(United Kingdom)

Andres Segovia - because he brought the guitar out of novelty & he was the master

John Williams - because he's so versatile and precise & great guitar ambassador

Julian Bream - because he's just so much fun to watch play & with such passion

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Nov 10, 2008
Snap!
by: Mike Fisher

I have just entered the same three guitarists... cosmic.

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Pure Genius

by Philip Todd
(Northern Ireland)

1) Andres Segovia - a pioneer of classical guitar as a discipline, where would we be without Segovia?

2) Edgar Cruz - I know, an unusual choice, Cruz's adapting Classical techniques to popular solo arranging is amazing, and likely to inspire others

3) Ana Vidovic - What she has acheived at such a young age is incredible and she can only get better

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Papeeloo

by Jean-Paul Marchetti
(Westfield, NJ)

Andres Segovia made me love the classical guitar and the repertoire. His style was a genuine new way of playing and many guitarists still are under his influence (John Williams, Julian Bream...)

He made possible for the classical guitar to enter the concerts halls and inspired the most famous composers like Joachim Rodrigo and many others.His technique was intuitive rather than rigorous despite his efforts to master scales and chords but it gave him the mean to interpret beautifully some of the major works for guitar and lute the way nobody else has done before and after him.

I had a crush on Sharon Isbin when she gave a recital in Paris Salle Cortot in 198?(I don't remember). Even if her sound does not fit entirely my taste, she impressed me and the entire audience with her technique and virtuosity.She played the Decameron Negro(written for her by Leo Brouwer) and I fell in love with her and her interpretation. Please do not tell her!

Thanks to YouTube, I discovered a new generation of guitarists that otherwise I would have missed: Su Meng, Ana Vidovic, Nataly Makovskaya, Yvonne Helkenberg,Giulio Tampalini, Jason Vieux...(there are many more who I do not know yet) however I think Xuefei Yang is the rising star, technique, virtuosity, sensitivity, she has all.

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Sep 14, 2010
Andre-The Giant
by: RJ

I agree with your comments on Segovia 100%.
I also agree that the greats of today are standing on his shoulders.

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bijus greats

by biju sp
(India)

1.Segovia, 2,john Williams,3, Julian Bream.


These people are my favourite Classical Guitar performers.

They worked hard to reach there, they are TOP.
They have the FEEL, Perfection, style and they are playing the best music in the world.

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Micha - Israel

by Micha
(Jerusalem, Israel)

My three favorite guitarists are:

1. Andres Segovia
2. Virginia Luque
3. Alvaro Pierri

It is probably true that several younger players today have greater technical guitar skills than Segovia, however I think that he is the greatest because of his ability to express the very soul of the music that he plays. His tone production is magnificent. Furthermore he above all others made the guitar a respected concert and orchestral instrument.

Virginia Luque's playing speaks to my soul like no other player. She was a student of Segovia. I wish that she would record more for I feel that she has the potential to become the greatest guitarist of all time.

Alvaro Pierri playing is beautifully expressive and sensitive. He has an incredible musical sense. Nothing is ever forced and I never hear a harsh or unpleasant sound from his playing. He seems to have a magic touch.

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genre independent

Probably have to go with Andre Segovia 1st due to expression and mastery.

Christopher Parkening who is considered one of Segovia's greatest overall protege type players.

Phil Keaggy, anyone that can play anything possible on a guitar like he can, with only 9 fingers (similar situation to Django Reinhardt) has got to make the list.

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Three Generations

by Robert E. Greenspan, MD
(Alexandria, VA. USA)

Andres Segovia provided me inspiration to start.
John Williams provided me with inspiration to practice.
Franco Platino gives me hope hope to improve.

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Plodder

by Philip Wesley
(Llanelli, Wales)

Segovia - pedantic and opinionated as a musician -but his genius and spirituality transcends these flaws!

Julian Bream - Musician first - but still techically brilliant,

John Williams - Supreme technique - makes everything sound so effortless. I just wish that Bach could hear JW play the Chaconne!

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Jim

1. Segovia...relaxing

2. Sabicas...exciting, amazing, makes my heart beat a little faster.

3. Parkening...spiritial, I am a little closer to God when I hear the amazing gifts and talent he has given us. He never said it would be easy.

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Teacher/Students

by rhemingway
(St. Louis, MO)

Andres Segovia, Christopher Parkening, John Williams: because the music they play grabs your attention and tells a story the way classical music is supposed to.

Christopher Parkening played a concert at my college a few years ago, and it was then that I fell in love with the classical guitar. He is an amazing artist.

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Shivers Up My Spine!

by Ryan G
(Saint Paul, MN)

Historically I love Paco de Lucia and Andres Segovia...but if I get to watch and listen...Ana Vidovic. She's beautiful and absolutely stuns with her playing!

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Guitarafficionado657

by Alain Cote
(Alma Quebec)

First, Segovia for his contribution to the worldwide recognition of the guitar as a classical solo instrument and for his still unique sense of 'interpretation' (his right hand movements are somewhat too 'noisy' for me but the overall artistry of this master will be very difficult to achieve for the decades to come... (Sorry ;-))

Second, Chris Parkening: his interpretations are very inspired (reminiscent of Segovia's...) but a little more actual - namely, less '19 th' century than those of Segovia; his rubatos and portamentos, for example, are used less frequently ...

Moreover, I like the 'cleanliness' of his right hand playing : a big step compared to Segovia :-)

Third, Alexandre Lagoya for his powerful right hand guitar technique giving high volume performances as well as 'spirited' interpretations. May be the credit given to Lagoya about the right hand came from his spouse Ida Presti. (It remains difficult to fully compare Presti to the other masters of the classical guitar because her solo recordings are rare). Some very advised guitar players consider that Presti was a better guitarist than Lagoya...

If you want to compare them, just listen some of their recordings for two guitars; you will be able to identify wich of them are playing the line in the speakers...

A tip : the 'vibrato continuo' comes from Presti and the normal sound comes from Lagoya! :-)

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Jun 25, 2012
Andres Segovia Criticism
by: Hans

Actually Andres Segovia is a very controversial guitarist

See here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Andr%E9s_Segovia&oldid=374925242#Controversy_regarding_Segovia

Sep 16, 2010
excellent post. Ida was awesome
by: James

I agree with you whole heartedly.
Any love we have for all of these artists are very much complimentary to all of them.
I only wish that I had been able to start from a child level to learn and with great performers as master teachers.
This is a key for those young ones we need to keep and eye on so they will have the opportunity.

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It's the music!

by George
(Richboro, PA, USA)

Andre Segovia: His early recordings on "the guitar of the century" were my introduction to classical guitar. The remarkable emotional depth and superb tone are unforgettable.

David Russell: Here is a true artist, more than a superb technician. He plays music in a way that touches the heart.

Laurindo Almeida: I'll let him stand for the many creative folks, LAGQ for example, that push the boundaries of the art. Not "classical" due to his extensive jazz involvement? His writing, arranging and playing went beyond classical forms and that is a good thing, IMHO.

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Jan 06, 2008
Interesting item regarding Laurido Almeida
by: George

Laurindo Almeida was apparently one of the earliest to recognize the greatness of Augustin Barrios. He recorded Barrios works in the '50s according to the following link.
http://www.egtaguitarforum.org/ExtraArticles/Barrios.html

Dec 04, 2007
:)
by: michelle alvendia

..dis is what I'm looking for..:)

Nov 09, 2007
Thoughful Entry
by: Trevor M

Well done George. You've really thought about this one.

I really like Almeida's playing too.

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Enthralls

by kumar

Andre Segovia

John williams

I like them because I like listening to their playing.

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Oct 04, 2007
Yes, I Agree!
by: Trevor M.

Thanks for the reply and for joing the discussion Kumar. They sure are good to listen to!
Kind regards,
Trevor M.

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Always Learning!

by Judy S.
(TEXAS)

Andres Segovia -- his discipline and love for the guitar -- it really showed in his playing and the loving guidance he offered his students.

Christopher Parkening -- his discipline and who he is as a person -- it shines through in his playing. I have enjoyed both learning and instructing from his excellent method books which approach classical guitar in a logical and rewarding fashion.

John Williams -- the sound, the sound, the sound -- masterful!

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Mar 31, 2008
Yes, they are
by: Anonymous

Yes, it was certainly hard to narrow it down to three. Parkening is a magician with the instrument. His interpretation of the Villa Lobos Etude No. 11 is so alive it's hard to even think of any technical preparation...like all virtuosos, he makes it sound so natural.

And Segovia and Williams...the music speaks for itself.

Mar 03, 2008
Excellent Comments
by: Trevor M.

Excellent comments Judy! Segovia was indeed "Mr Discipline" wasn't he? I love his apporoach to playing scales. He worked out how to play them on guitar so logically and smoothly.

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inspiration!

by Richard Oliver
(Newcastle, uk)

Maestro Andres Segovia firstly for so many things, but especially his influence at bringing classical guitar to the fore!

Secondly John Williams for being an all round accomplished musician and his control over tonal quality on classical guitar!

And Michael Hedges (Not sure if people qualify him as a classical musician as such!). His style of playing the instrument has influenced so many people over the last 20 years or so and his original piece, Aerial Boundaries, is still my favourite tune to play even though I still can't quite figure out the exact string stopping patterns he uses!
^_^

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Old and mellow

by John Kotar
(Wisconsin)

No one can argue with the three most frequently suggested here (Segovia, Bream, Williams). I have not previously listened to many David Russell's recordings, but I just picked up his "Reflections of Spain" and he has me won over. I know I have a soft spot for the Spanish sound. Not long ago I said the same about Milos Karadaglic (Mediterano). I guess among the giants I like the most the one I am currently listening to.

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DrGuitar

by Micha Sloman
(Jerusalem, Israel)

The three greatest classical guitar players since recorded music are:
1. Andre Segovia
2. Julian Bream
3. David Russell

Segovia showed that the guitar could be a concert instrument. He created so much of the guitar repertoir by transcribing classical music written for other instruments such as the violin and cello. His technique in playing was amazing, for instance his fingering, timing, tone production, phrasing, etc.

Julian Bream is a musical genius. He can make a guitar sing like no other person. He has a magic touch, a sensitive understanding and a musical intelligence beyond any other guitarist that I know of.

David Russell is simple brilliant. There is no need for words to describe his playing - his music speaks for itself.

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Welcome!

A Bit About Me...

Welcome to LCG! I'm Trevor Maurice, owner of this site. I hope you find inspiration in these pages to help you with  your journey of learning to play the classical guitar. You can read more of my story here...

Classical Guitar
Blog Posts

Sons de Carrillhoes, performed by Samantha C. Wells...

http://ow.ly/FjYE302IK14

* J.S. BACH, Sarabande BWV 995, Viktor VAN NIEKERK, 10-String Guitar, classical guitar...

http://ow.ly/s7yq302x2W6

 * Robert de Visee - Petit Menuet (8 string guitar)...

http://ow.ly/gXxr302izIi

Manuel Ponce - Scherzino Mexicano...

 http://ow.ly/Hhz43026ZlZ

Segovia plays Bach's Chaconne (Read along)...

http://ow.ly/ZP953026ZW8

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