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The Christopher Parkening Guitar Method - Volume 1: Guitar Technique Paperback – August 1, 1997
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Top Customer Reviews
The more I use this book, the more I appreciate it. We're working through about five exercises a week--some of them though basic, offer accompaniments so you can play "real music" with your instructor. Years ago, I played flute a bit and unlike piano (my first instrument) you don't have so much of a self accompaniment with guitar if you are playing a single treble line. Adding another player allows you to concentrate on making music and not being as self-conscious. There are some good basic songs as well--early in the book, such as "Au Claire de la Lune" but with a thumb accompaniment that lets you learn to play both even at the beginning of your musical journey.
This book has been around a long time, but it is a useful book for studying guitar and a real classic.
I find the duets very inspiring -- when I play my easy part along with my teacher (he gets the harder part) it gives me some perspective on where I'm headed and a delicious taste of what's possible. Having these duets is a lovely inducement to work hard enough to play the next one, and the next -- a carrot dangling before me to tempt me through the occasional sticky (repetitive, difficult) practice session.
One important caveat: I think this book would be difficult to use without a teacher. There is so much material that I'm getting from my teacher directly -- seating position, how to hold the guitar, important nuances of hand and finger positioning which he gently corrects throughout the lesson, learning how to mark up and learn pieces, how to read ahead and place my fingers ahead for the next note(s), etc. He helps me shape my nails properly, which is vitally important for a good tone! Personally, I would not rely on this book or any other book in the absence of a good and patient teacher. When we begin guitar (or any other instrument), that is the time when we establish our foundation. It's very difficult to unlearn bad habits once they're formed.
UPDATE: I found the version with the CD and it is very helpful. Four years after beginning my guitar studies with this book, my sight-reading and playing have grown by leaps and bounds. I can't begin to express how thrilled I was when I was able to read and play the final work in this book, a beginner-intermediate arrangement of "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring" by J.S. Bach. Thank you, Mr. Parkening for a VERY helpful method book -- and thanks to my teacher for skillfully guiding me through the early stages of classical guitar studies using Mr. Parkening's method.
I also recommend the version that has an accompanying CD because it gives the students an opportunity to hear what the end product should sound and a chance to play along with a seasoned musician.
If you're looking to get started on Classical guitar and do it correctly, I don't think you could find a better book. Once I start with an instructor, I'll probably ask to use this book. It's layed out in a well thought out manner with really good technique throughout.
This first book takes you all the way through the "first position" on the guitar, and the next book takes you all the way up the neck.
Great book! You can't go wrong.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Christopher Parkening is a great guitarist.Read more