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Great Guitar Tips, Issue #028
May 01, 2006

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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Great Guitar Tips - The World's Most Useable Guitar E-Zine ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ A free, monthly E-Zine dedicated to providing you with useful information and tips for your guitar playing ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ April 2006 Issue #028 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ If you like this E-Zine, please do a friend a big favor and pass it on. If a friend DID forward this to you and if you like what you read, please subscribe by visiting...


Table Of Contents

1. News

2. New Page - Alirio Diaz

3. Guitar Nails - With or Without?

4. Recommended Resource

5. This Month's Fr/ee Music


1. News

Hi to all new and old subscribers!

Welcome to the April 2006 issue of Great Guitar Tips. If you're getting this ezine in early May...sorry about that but look on the bright side. You'll be getting two pieces of fr/ee music this month! Really, I've been terribly busy of late and it does take a long time to get the fingering right on the pieces I edit. I'm quite fussy about that because for years I've bought music from shops (and often respectable editions) and you know straight away that a guitarist hasn't done the fingering. It's probably about saving money and using who's available but that's another story. I won't go down that path!

Anyway, I've written a new page about Alirio Diaz. Although he's in his eighties now he still continues to play and influence the world of classical guitar. See below for details.

There's also a debate on whether to use nails or flesh. You probably know my opinion if you've looked over my site at all but I've published a contrary view for your perusal. Decide for yourself!

If you are looking for a good tool to record your music via computer I've come across an inexpensive yet excellent tool to do just this.

Then there's the fr/ee music. So...

I hope you enjoy this month's newsletter. So let's go!

2. New Page - Alirio Diaz

Alirio Diaz was born in Venezuela in 1923 into a large family of eleven brothers. He took an early interest in guitar and... Read more here

3. Guitar Nails - With or Without?

You can see my opinion on this subject if you haven't already seen it on this page... I like to consider differing opinions because it's "healthy" to do this and there's NEVER any one right way to do anything. That being said, I found a good article by Peter Edvinsson of Capotasto Music which gives support to a contrary view...

Start of article-----

Most classical guitarists use a lot of time polishing and grooming their right hand fingernails. In order to play with nails you have to have good nails and working with them a lot. Is it possible to play without nails? Let's take a look at no nail playing!

Angel Iglesias, a great Spanish guitarist touring Denmark round 1953 played with nails in the same way as Segovia, Llobet and Barrios did. Some guitarists at this time played with their fingertips.

Another great Spanish virtuoso who toured Denmark in periods, Francisco Alfonso, (whose father studied with Tárrega) used only his fingertips. The differences of their tone quality were described by people who had heard them both:

“Alfonso’s tone was unusually beautiful, round and soft while Iglesias’ was harder and somewhat sharp.”

Personally I have played classical guitar with nails and without nails and I can see some advantages from playing without nails:

1. You will come nearer your guitar through the contact between your fingertips and the guitar string.

2. You can play with your fingers on electric guitars without the risk of damaging your nails.

3. Playing guitar without nails will force you to play with the highest degree of articulation and concentration.

4. You will be able to play piano properly without disturbing nails.

5. You will get a soft and beautiful tone on your guitar if you consistently work on it.

Pujol a guitarist who played without nails wrote, "the flesh best transmit the feeling of the soul...such an unresponsive medium as nails interferes, somehow with the direct contact of the artist's sensibility to the string."

The art of playing without nails must be developed. You have to work with your tone as much without nail as with them. If you have used nails and start to play without nails you will feel uncomfortable before getting used to the different technique involved and before you develop calluses on you fingertips.

As times goes by you will improve your tone through your harder fingertips and your better articulation. You cannot be sloppy in your playing with this technique.

Even if you will go back to playing with your nails again you will see an improvement in you playing due to a better technique.

End of article-----

Peter Edvinsson is a musician, composer and music teacher. Visit his site Capotasto Music and download your free sheet music and learn to play resources at Capotastomusic...

Article Source:

4. Recommended Resource

Audio Record Wizard is a real-time sound recorder software, which offers professional recording features with mp3 support.

It works with your sound card and here's the good part, you can record sound from a microphone. This is great for us guitarists who may want to record music for our students or record ourselves, either to listen to how we're improving or record other parts to duos, trios etc. Here are some other benefits of the Record wizard...

* Record from all sound sources (including RealPlayer, Windows Media Player)

* Create MP3 files easily from any Internet audio source

* The Audio Record Wizard interface is easy to use!

* You can select the different mp3 recording modes as required (Mono, Stereo etc.

* Extremely useful Record-Pause function Copy music from Internet audio

You can check it out here...

5. This Month's Fr/ee Music

And now for the music! This month's music is a wonderful, easy-sounding yet tricky little Menuet in C major.

I've loved playing this over the years. The half bar section from bars 22 to 28 and then slightly beyond to bar 32 can be played slightly staccato on the 2nd & 3rd beats to give it a little more character.

You can download it here...

Don't forget to right click and use "Save Target As" to your desktop (if you're using Windows). I hope you enjoy the music!

And that's all for this issue. See you next month...whoops! I mean this month :))

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