Classical Guitar - I started at age 11

by Ken
(Uxbridge. Middlesex, UK)

It all began when I had turned my 11th birthday. My Dad had a damaged banjo and it was propped up in the corner of the living room. I never bothered picking it up because it looked too complicated to play. Besides the strings felt like a cheese cutter and I thought I would cut my fingers.

Then one day the banjo had gone and my Dad bought home a Spanish Guitar (not a very good one) but it looked great. I couldn't resist having a go on it. I think the shape and look of it drew it to me. Apparently the first classical guitar made was modelled on the shape of a woman !!

Anyway, I picked up the guitar and messed about with it. My Dad showed me a few notes and that was it - I was hooked.

I was then very fortunate that we had a private classical guitar teacher come to our school every Friday. Guess where I spent most Fridays at school. Within 2 years I was performing in the school concerts.

My most nerve-racking experience was performing solo at a local village hall to a hundred retired people. Yes I played Romance (Spanish Ballad) and some studies and at the end they all stood up and gave me a standing ovation. I felt so great.

I realise now (at the age of 50) that what I played then I was very slow and basic but at least I performed.

6 years ago I met a local guy who I had heard about from a friend. He is a personal friend of Paco Pena and once met Juliam Bream, John Williams and Segovia.

Anyway, I thought I could play well until I met this man. He invited me round to his flat for a lesson (I hadn't played for a few years). He asked me to play a few peaces (which I duly did). I then asked him to play. I sat there with my mouth open. The last time I had heard someone play like this was Julian Bream. Infact, when he used to play in Spain the locals would call him Segovia. I can see why.

Thanks to this tutor (and close friend) I now play up to concert standard. It goes to show, you never stop learning.

Hope you have enjoyed my short summary of my life playing classical guitar and I hope it leaves you with some inspiration.

On a final note, I have just bought a classical guitar modelled on a Hauser. To say the tone is fantastic is an understatement.

Thank you for reading.

To all my fellow classical guitarists, I wish you much continued enjoyment with your instrument.

Best wishes.


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