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  • siegfried steinkogler

Guitar Music for Beginners - Simplicity as a Challenge

Is it possible to compose music in a contemporary way for beginners? As a composer I have been busy writing new music for guitar learners. Hereby I wanted to avoid well-known forms of children's songs and folksongs, as well as patterns of Rock-, Posp-, or Blues Music although I sometimes use single elements of these genres in my own music - f. e. Five Rock Pieces (audio sample movement 4 .

Composers know how difficult it is to write music for beginners, much more than composing music for professionels. This is due to the limited possibilities which can be used for these pieces. Also it is quite demanding, a real challenge to form a new piece out of some single notes only.

Most concerned about the challenge of the"biggest-possible" simplicity was while writing the first volume of my pedagogical work "Igel Gigels Gitarrenabenteuer".

Due to the demanded brevity of the pieces they may consist of very few musical ideas, sometimes only of one idea.

Let me introduce to you my intentions by the opening piece of this edition: the guitar duo "Das Schlagzeug"/"The Drum"

This piece consists of two musical thoughts only:

  • a melody of three quarter notes and a quarter rest

  • the bass-motif A-E-A which - executed in fortissimo - imitates a drum or two timpani.

In didactical and pedagogical matters the beginner can learn a lot of different aspects, which are as follows:

  • alternate picking

  • powerful attack of the thumb

  • the first three fretted notes

  • execution of quarter rests by damping the strings

  • to play music together with the teacher

The piece consists of two guitar parts. First of all the student will learn the first part which is one-line throughout - using only 8 different notes. Later on he will pass over to the second part, which is slightly advanced in the level of difficulty. ​

Due to simplicity the stressmarks (>) on every third quarter note can be ignored at first. When the player has practised the piece properly the stressmarks are a well-sounding rhythmical detail.

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