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El Jaleo - John Singer Sargent
El Jaleo - John Singer Sargent

Master guitar players exhibit extreme abilities in the area of technique on the instrument. Many of which defy the ageing process and continue into older ages as master guitar players.

Sabicas, Paco de Lucia, Segovia, Toniho Horta, Pat Martino, Pat Metheny, Benson to mention a few. They seem to posses some secret to their abilities.

Many guitar players have found exceptional teachers and these secrets are passed on. You may have also. Some have figured it out by themselves through their own unique awareness.

I have heard many different ideas about good technique over the years time and time again. Stay relaxed, practice slowly, go over difficult passages (phrases) over and over to perfection. But over time you may have found yourself developing bad habits without realizing it, and come to a place where you no longer seem to progress. Find yourself straining to play fast to a point where you can not.
www.guitarprinciples.com offers new bold insight into these issues and overcoming them. This web site is growing in popularity over the last few years. People are starting to talk about teaching the "Principles" and being a "Principled" player or teacher. And for good reason.

www.guitarprinciples.com offers a lot of free information including forums and a few products. The main product being Jamie Andreas's book 'The Principles of Correct Practice For Guitar' for under $30. The only 'Book' you need to learn good to surprisingly excellent technique. How far you go is unlimited, or only limited by you.
I really don't think I could improve on the Principles, but could use them in my own teaching. So I don't have anything to add here.
The book is intended for all players at any level, and contains all the Principles of Jamie's concepts. There is also a book 'The GuitarPrinciples Path Level One: Chords & Rhythm' a must for beginners

Nowhere have I run into someone that has developed simple exercises that train the player and overcome the difficulties of the instrument so well. Anyone that reads english can gain from Jamie's approach.
The emphasis is on how to physically learn what you want to play. What to play is covered in Folk/pop, Classical, and Rock/Blues styles but applies to anything you play on guitar, especially Jazz and Latin styles. The exercises cover finger style and playing with a pick. These can be easily applied to any style as I said Country, Bluegrass, Jazz etc.

As a Jazz player I strongly suggest first working with the exercises and then applying them and the concepts to your music. If you need to apply them to single string picking practice other than scales, you can go to www.patmartino.com and use his line studies. You will find them under Nature of the Guitar> Giant Steps Studies. Pat Martino also has a book of line studies 'Linear Expressions' Hal Leonard HL00070011. You could also use the fingerings from my Book and make up your own line studies based on the different fingerings as a source melodic material. Use the head to any Jazz or Bebop tune and apply the techniques of these exercises to master them.

You can apply the Principles to chord melody and any other activity on the Guitar.

Page Last Updated: October 8, 2006 | Email: cgrey0224@comcast.net

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