In May of 2014 I was in Hilo for my daughter Rebecca’s college graduation. My habit when I am there is to get up early to watch the sunrise.
On Thursday, May 8th I went across the street to Wai’uli Beach Park with my guitar and the opening melody found its way across the strings. I played around with it as the sun rose and pretty much sketched out an 8-measure theme that became the A Section and another that became the B Section.
Running short on time, I went back to grab the camera to record the ideas in case I forgot them as there was a lot to do for the next few hours.
When I got a chance to get back to the guitar I was glad I had gone back for the camera as the themes were slipping away. I played through the song a few more times and got it a little clearer in my head.
The next day I even attempted playing it on the TG News. A couple months later I got back to polishing it up, arranging the parts and adding a somewhat related coda to wrap it up. You can still hear the TG News version for comparison but here is the way it sounded on August 17th.
The Venezuelan Waltzes by Antonio Lauro really grabbed me when I was playing classical guitar a little more seriously, back in the late 1970′s. I have recently resurrected them and have been playing them on the steel-string guitar. This really gives them a different character and feel that I hope you enjoy.
Waltz #1 (Tatiana) is not as popular or famous as #2 or #3 but includes many of the interesting techniques and harmonies of the others.
Continuing to explore the steel-string approach to romantic classics, we have my interpretation of Lagrima, or at least one interpretation. Francisco Tarrega wrote Lagrima (Teardrop) while in England and feeling homesick, missing his beloved Spain.
The piece is similar to many others of his having two eight-measure sections in contrasting keys, E Major then E Minor, arranged in the AABBA form.
As many of you know, I really enjoy playing classical pieces on the steel-string guitar. I would like to think that Francisco Tarrega may have embraced the instrument as well, had it evolved during his lifetime.
As part of preparing lessons on some of my favorite classical pieces, I need to play and practice them over a long period of time to really get a feel for what I think the piece is trying to say. Here is an interpretation recorded on July 10, 2014.
The third video in our House Concert series with Dave Nachmanoff features the song Postcards to Stan.
Written on a family vacation in Italy while Dave was relaxing in a cafe, Postcard to Stan was inspired by a women that was sitting a few tables down. The song is about what might have been going through her had as she sat nearby in the cafe.
In early March of this year our long time TG member and general musical activist Lynn hosted a house concert at her home in Virginia. Dave Nachmanoff, now officially part of the TG family, was her featured guest. Dave is an incredibly talented musician from Northern California who has been performing and writing songs since he was a child. For the last ten years or so he has also been traveling as Al Stewart’s right hand man, essentially Al’s band.
About fifty people were treated to an evening of Dave’s musical magic and we are thrilled that some of it was captured on video. These clips include stories about the songs and give us a glimpse of how fun and entertaining house concerts can be.
The series kicks off with Dave’s instrumental Port Angeles and his piano take on Romeo And Juliet, originally by Mark Knopfler and done on the Dire Straits album Making Movies.