encabezado magazine


      Past Issues

Issue 5 - July 22th, 2012

I would like to invite you to be part of this Weekly Magazine by raising questions and giving me suggestions thorugh e-mail so this magazine can become a good material for all flamenco lovers, researchers and musicians. Enjoy it!


1.- Comments, Questions and Answers: How playability (in a particular guitar) affects my daily practice and the outcome of it?

2.- Videos of the Week:
1) Compás por Soleá por Arriba
2) Major Scale Linked Fingerings Preliminary Beginners (continuation)

3.- Video Recommendation of the Week: "Paco de Lucía Amazing Apoyando!!!"

1.- Comments, Questions and Answers: "How playability (in a particular guitar) affects my daily practice and the outcome of it?"

Question :

Instead of practicing or just playing and enjoying my sound I feel like I am fighting against my guitar.

After watching your documentary about “How to choose a good flamenco guitar” (http://www.rdiaz.org/rdvideo148.html ) I came to realize that at present I don’t have a nice guitar to play, and I think this is making me sad because I feel that the action on my guitar is very high (the distance between the 6th string and the 12 fret) the bridge is drilled incorrectly with uneven distances between the orifices, is difficult to play and I really don’t like how I sound on it.

How playability (in a particular guitar) affects my daily practice and the outcome of it?


This high action issue is a real problem to be solved as it has a twofold aspect:
1) Its physical facet.
2) The aesthetical ingredient or taste. Namely, how one perceives his/her sound on a particular guitar. Hence liking and enjoying goes along with a comfortable action.

In my experience nowadays and with more than 150 active students (plus other hundreds in the past) I have seen everything. Some people develop injuries because of having to press too much against the fretboard daily with their left hand, others keep trying unsuccessfully to improve speed in scales (for example) while practicing with the wrong instrument.

The playability of your guitar is intimately connected with your efficiency in playing. Imagine a runner training for the Olympics with the wrong shoes…say with high and uneven heels or something like that. It seems a joke right…?

Part of being fast in scale playing is how your guitar makes it easy for you to play.

To be comfortable with your sound -the fact that you like how you sound while playing- also depends on the quality of the guitar you play to an enormous extent.

To solve this dilemma CFG-studio sometimes provides their students with adequate instruments, because one needs a proper guitar to practice well, proper does not mean the most expensive guitar, rather it means a guitar that fulfills the comfort you call for as well as the standard characteristics required to succeed in performance (I suggest you visit their grants page http://www.cfgstudio.com/cfgs-grant.html )

Excellence in technique is about awareness and we have to learn this awareness from an experienced teacher, otherwise either by bad habits or willful blindness, we may be misled ceaselessly. In this topic subjectivity and objectivity enter into play. For example: If during his/her whole life one got used to walk with asymmetrical and uncomfortable shoes (a pair of shoes that have uneven measurements or they have different heels height) and suddenly he/she gets an even, symmetrical and perfectly made pair of shoes, he/she  may feel awkward or uncomfortable subjectively, although objectively those shoes fit him/her perfectly, unless one needs special shoes because of an orthopedic condition.

However if the person in question didn’t get extremely used to the wrong measurements, I mean if he/she is lucky enough, he/she will feel very comfortable and relieved with the  change of shoes and there will be only a sensation of satisfaction and pleasure regarding his/her change of shoes.

So it’s also a matter of habit. However there are certain objective anomalies that we have to eliminate in order to clear our path of accomplishment in guitar playing, regardless  we are beginner or intermediate level players.

Another misconception in vogue is that what is important is how one plays, not which guitar we play… This nonsense is generally supported with the empty argument that the one who is a great player plays great music even with a bad guitar. So one should aspire to play in a low quality guitar and nothing detrimental will happen.

If a great player can play great music circumstantially on a bad guitar (or instrument) that does not mean that this is the ideal thing to follow as even the great players, with all their expertise, expect to feel VERY comfortable in their instruments while playing. What to speak of us.  


There are 4 Possibilities:

1) Good player with a good guitar.

2) Good player with a bad guitar.

3) Bad player with a good guitar.

4) Bad player with a bad guitar.

In my opinion we as players (all levels included) should aspire to be included in choice number 1 which is: To be a good player with a good guitar as well.

I explain this aspect in video format here

Proper knowledge and awareness are the keys to success.

2.- Videos of the Week: 1) Compás por Soleá por Arriba "Right Hand Remates por Tangos - Interactive Lesson 2"

Compás por Soleá por Arriba

let solea x arriba

Major Scale All Fingerings (Continuation)

let major sc pre-beg


This lesson is the continuation of:

let major scale fingerings


3.- Video Recommendation of the Week: "Paco de Lucía Amazing Apoyando!!!"

This is a short but very juicy video! Paco de Lucía's Technique is just perfect! Please take a look at the action of his guitar.

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