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  #16  
Old 07-12-2009, 09:19 AM
menhir menhir is offline
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In the interest of full disclosure, I can read music, I play fingerstyle, I can play classical music but I am not a classical guitarist, and due to some anatomical deficiency, a pick/plectrum is something that is designed for the sole purpose of having something to slip out of my fingers.

This all smacks to me of "This is what I like in music and this is the way I approach playing it and anything that produces another result suffers by comparison."

I call bull****.

Classical musicians not being inventive? Who wrote those classics, then?

I remember working on a piece for my instructor a few years ago and later hearing it played by John Williams. To say that the results were identical (obvious differences in talent aside ) put to rest the idea of being a slave to the written music. Oh, we were both hitting the same notes, but the interpretations were totally different. Needless to say, I changed my interpretation of the piece more than a little after that.

It's true, there are a lot of uninspiring musical technicians out there never get beyond the score, but that's hardly restricted to classical musicians or classical techniques or the lack or inclusion of a plectrum. But that shouldn't be the standard all classical musicians should be judged by, anymore than all jazz or rock guitarists should be judged by the endless minions whose musicianship, including improvisation, lie only in duplicating what they heard others do on a recording.

I would also like to point out that the ability to improvise is not a goal that every musician aspires to. And historically speaking, the ability to improvise is hardly cutting edge stuff. Jazz and rock musicians (not a jab here, honest) are just the last group to embrace it. From the days of Handel, probably even before, what are now considered classical musicians (they were contemporary back then) would put on improvisational performances...it was quite popular back then. Why don't more people know about this? The performances were not written down...they were improvised.

Last edited by menhir; 07-12-2009 at 11:32 AM.
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  #17  
Old 07-12-2009, 11:46 AM
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rick-slo rick-slo is offline
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I was into playing classical guitar for over thirty years and I love classical music in general but:
Quote:
Originally Posted by menhir;1899502
Classical musicians not being inventive? Who [I
wrote[/I] those classics, then?
The classical music composers - most people who play classical music are not composers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by menhir;1899502
Oh, we were both hitting the same notes, but the interpretations were [I
totally[/I] different. Needless to say, I changed my interpretation of the piece more than a little after that.
Interpretation is not the same as coming up with new material.

Quote:
Originally Posted by menhir;1899502
...would put on improvisational performances...it was quite popular back then. Why don't more people know about this? The performances were not written down...they were [I
improvised[/I].[/
Today it is the rare exception, not the rule.

I do think a typcial good jazz player for example is likely to be more in tune with what chords lead to other chords, how to harmonized spontaneously, etc. (if not of the theory at least in practice)
than a typical good classical music player. It is just in the nature of what each style calls for. But as I posted earlier personally on average I would rather listen to music where each note was
thoughtfully planned out by a composer than music that is largerly spontaneous in origin.
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  #18  
Old 07-12-2009, 02:37 PM
Billy Memphis Billy Memphis is offline
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I can attest that the mindsets of classical vs plectrum use is distinct and polar opposites in some ways. I spent time in college studying classical and also played my electric and acoustic in popular music. The techniques I learned in classical as far as guitar are invaluable to me in all of my music and I think being able to read music is a tool I would hate to be without. If only for all of the music I discover from fake books and other written material I would have never heard!
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