An Art of Guitar Series Ebook
Conquering Technical Hurdles
The Art of Mastering Classical Guitar Technique
With Bonus Video Instruction
Classical guitar music is awesome.
The music we play covers a huge range of styles and traditions, from throughout history and from all around the world, from Renaissance to Baroque to Flamenco to Jazz, from Bach to Mozart to Barrios to Contemporary composers who take all manner of idioms and disciplines as their inspirational playground.
But Classical Guitar Technique is complicated.
Our daunting technical goal is to bring this music to life, the melody, the bass-line, the accompaniment-all on a SINGLE, quirky instrument, to evoke an imaginary orchestra in the imagination, to call forth all the sonorities, effects, colors, articulation, tone, expressiveness, and even dazzling speed that these six nylon strings can allow.
- Do you get stuck trying to learn pieces that shouldn’t be so hard, but for one or two difficult spots that ruin it for all the rest of the piece?
- Do you have a few irritating technical limits that seem to keep you from progressing any further, even though other things are working well for you?
- Do you get frustrated because you know something doesn’t sound as good as you want it to, but you just don’t know how to fix it?
- Do you get overwhelmed by how complicated classical guitar technique is? There seem to be so many different parts to it, and you just don’t know how to get them to all work together as one?
- Do you have issues with your left hand…or issues with your right hand….or with one finger, or thumb that doesn’t want to do as asked?
- Do you have problems with certain techniques— like barring, or slurring, or scale speed, or tone production—-that you just can’t get to work well enough?
Do you wish you could spend your precious practice time playing and actually conquering more of your favorite pieces—rather than staying stuck playing the same ones over and over because of one or two technical traps.
There’s so much great classical guitar repertoire to choose from. If you want to be able to truly mine the riches of this repertoire, enjoy it for yourself and share it with others, then there are several things you’ll need to get handled:
- You need have a clear understanding of the finer points of technique.
- You need to know how to practice so you can progressively master them.
- You need to know how to to identify where your blind spots are.
- You need to know how to work towards fixing habits that are holding you back.
Conquering Technical Hurdles integrates everything I’ve learned in 35+ years of playing, practicing, performing, recording and teaching classical guitar into a set of principles and instructions that are as simple, elegant and effective as I can make them.
In “Conquering Technical Hurdles: The Art of Mastering Classical Guitar Technique” I’ll cover all of the basics of classical guitar technique in a clear and well-thought out way.
I show you the fine art of practicing them in ways that can steadily train and transform your hands, ears and strings towards the goal of achieving effortless technical flow—so your hands can become versatile, efficient, and fully available for your expressive imagination.
I’ll also show you how you can grow not only technically, but as a musician and a guitarist— in ways you might not have realized were possible. to learn using parts of yourself that you might have ignored until now.
The book is not meant to substitute for a real live teacher, but it does address your ability teach yourself when your teacher is not there looking over your shoulder, or when you don’t have a teacher to go to.
“Jay’s pedagogy is clear and accessible. He takes into account all levels of students, so the beginner doesn’t run away discouraged or the advanced turn off because they’re not challenged.”
“Jay’s approach to teaching is distracting me TO the music and away from the usual din in my head which disconnects me from both my hands and the guitar. So instead of listening to the whirlwind of chopped up thoughts I’m usually having while practicing, which are mostly negative (did that wrong, strings ALWAYS buzz, my hands must be misshapen, shouldn’t be even trying to do this, etc.), I am listening to the guitar — to the strings. The second thing is coming naturally from the first: I am feeling a direct connect between my mind, hands and back and shoulders and what sounds are happening. So I feel in control. “