This lesson introduces the soleá with the most simple of melodies. This melody, played only with the thumb is a fundamental part of the guitar repertoire. Although easy to play there are some important things to consider.
- Keep in compás. Every note should sound with identical volume, except those that you accentuate as part of the compás.
- When playing the bass notes, your thumb should always play rest strokes, that is, come to rest on the next string after playing the one above. Accentuating notes is not a case of hitting a string harder from a distance but pushing it further in towards the sound board.
- You will need to play this first measure dead slow, so that you can manage the final one with ease.
The second measure introduces thumb and index finger alternation. The thumb continues to play apoyando, but the index finger will need to play tirando.
The third measure introduces our first arpeggio. Again, do not discriminate: allow every note to sound for its full value. If you allow some notes to sound for a longer time, and the others are “crushed” together you will not be practicing the arpeggio properly. Record your playing and be your own fiercest critic. Don’t be too ambitious.
The final measure is a further variation of the same theme. This time on beat three and beat six, the thumb plays a chord with a golpe. When you reach this measure, the question I ask myself is: “have I maintained exactly the same tempo and volume throughout?” and “has every note been allowed to sound as it should?”. “Am I in complete control of the music?”