Classical Guitar Piece with a Flamenco Flavor!

Andalucia follows on from a previous Flamenco/Classical Guitar lesson: namely, Malaguena. Like in Malaguena, you get to practice some flamenco techniques you wouldn't always get playing purely classical guitar.

You'll notice in many of the bars there are arrows. These arrows give direction for the fingers when strumming the strings. For instance, in bar 1 you see four arrows above the notation pointing downwards. Additionally, there is a right hand fingering letter accompanying it. This means to strike the strings indicated with that particular finger in the direction of the arrow. You, in fact, "drag" your nail across the strings in a fast motion which produces a great sound and effect.

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Sometimes, as in bar 11, you'll see the arrow go the opposite way. This means you strike the string or strings in that opposite direction You'll also notice the full rasgueado's in bars 12, 16 and 27. You play these in a similar way to the ones in Malaguena. That is you begin with the "a" finger. After that follows the "m" and "i" fingers and they strike the strings in a downward fashion. Your fingers follow each other striking the strings almost simultaneously. Watch the piece on the video see what I mean...

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Back to Andalucia...

The rhythms are also what give it that flamenco feel. It is often counted thus:

"1 and a 2 and 3 and"

"1 and a 2 and 3"

The second example, the "3" count is only sounded for a 1/2 crotchet or 1/8 note in length. The stopping of notes gives more "flavor" and "character" a piece. Indeed, it is a real fun piece to play. All fingers of the right hand are used in Andalucia, and it can be a little challenging for the beginner, but if you take it slowly, as always my advice, you'll master the tricky rhythms and character of Andalucia.

Some other markings of note in Andalucia are the:

* Fermata - Indicates holding the note longer than its usual length. The Fermata looks like a dot with a semi-circle above or below it. The performer usually determines its actual length, but it needs to be in keeping with the piece and within the bounds of common sense of course.

* rit. - This is a shortened term from the Italian word "Ritenuto". It means "immediately held back."

* a-tempo - This means to return to the normal tempo after the "rit." section.

* Grace Note - This is at the beginning of bar 14. You'll see a "B" and "C" note but in smaller print. They are also connected to the "normal" sized "B" note by a slur. The Grace Note is played faster. In this case, it is before the first beat of the bar, but counted within the beat. See the video for an example of how it is played.

* CV - This indicates you play the 5th fret as a full bar chord. If you look at the notation and/or Tab, you'll see which notes in particular are played in the bar chord.

* Triplet - You'll notice in bar 17 there's a triplet (the notes in question have a "3" over them) which means to play three notes in the time of two. It adds to the overall character and feel of the piece.

* Rasgueado - These are the "squiggly" lines in front of the chords in bars 12, 16 and 27. I've already mentioned above how to play these chords with the "a", "m" and "i" fingers.

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