Sakura is a popular folk song found in Japan. The translation means “Cherry Blossoms.” I’ve always loved this melody. The first time I heard it performed on the classical guitar was by John Williams who was playing an arrangement by Yuquijiro Yocoh. That is a very virtuosic arrangement (and beautiful arrangement). For this arrangement I wanted to arrange it for the late-beginner, early intermediate level student.
I made this arrangement of the Rondo Alla Turca last year and finally got around to recording it. It took so long because it is difficult and I wanted to adjust the arrangement so that it was less difficult to play.
Mozart composed this piece in 1778 and is the last movement of his Piano Sonata No. 11. It was meant to imitate the sound of Turkish Janissary Bands.
I’ll be making a teaching video for this song very soon.
In this guitar lesson I teach this wonderful etude by Carcassi. This is a good etude for the intermediate player because it sounds nice, has a repeated pattern in the right hand and isn’t too bad in the left hand.
Carcassi was an Italian virtuoso guitarist and composer who spent most of his professional career in Germany and France.
This is a fingerstyle / classical guitar arrangement of the beautiful theme composed by Francis Lai for the movie, Love Story. The theme was composed for the movie and then lyrics were added and it became a popular song, called Where Do I Begin?, in the early 1970s. The original singer was Andy Williams.
This theme comes from the music that the Russian composer, Pyotr IIyich Tchaikovsky, composed for the ballet, Swan Lake. This has always been one of my favorite pieces of music and a few years ago I finally decided to make an arrangement. I tried making this arrangement as easy as possible. You can find more guitar lessons at my guitar school found at my website.
Lagrima by Tarrega is one of my favorite pieces and it is one of the first pieces I performed in public for the first time. I started playing electric guitar in high school. My guitar heroes were Eddie Van Halen and Slash (they still are). I went to Hope College and took a classical guitar class with Larry Malfroid and loved it. I loved it so much that I decided to become a music major. The first student recital I played in I played Lagrima, Adelita (also by Tarrega) and Spanish Romance. It’s a piece I have played regularly since then. I have never grown tired of it.
Francisco Tarrega is one of my favorite guitar composers (the other being Villa-Lobos). His pieces work well on the guitar and sound so beautiful.
Hallelujah by Leonard Cohen is a beautiful song. It’s a song I’ve always wanted to arrange for guitar and finally did that a couple of years ago. The song was originally released in 1984 but became more popular through recordings by John Cale and Jeff Buckley. It became even more popular from the movie Shrek.
Estudio in e minor is a great little study composed by the Spanish composer, Francisco Tárrega. For the first half of the piece, the right hand pattern is the same as the pattern found in Spanish Romance. For the second half of the piece it is played with tremolo. Tremolo can be a tough technique to learn. The nice thing about this piece is that the tremolo is all on the first string. I find that a lot of people have difficulty with the tremolo when it is on the second string.
Francisco Tarrega is my favorite guitar composer. What I mean by that is he is my favorite composer who composed for the guitar. Well…one of them. It’s a tie for me between Tarrega and Villa-Lobos.
Yesterday by the Beatles is a classic song originally recorded by Paul McCartney on vocals with acoustic guitar/strings in the background. The Beatles are one of my favorite bands and I plan on making more arrangements of their music.
The Tango by Francisco Tárrega is a beautiful piece of music by my favorite composer for the guitar. I’ve always loved this piece but I have avoided playing it because of the tuning. You drop the 6th string down to D and the 5th string down to G. It certainly makes this piece much easier to play but I guess I am lazy and don’t like tuning my guitar that way. I am glad I finally learned it because it is a lot of fun to play.