Tag Archives: Flamenco

#Let’sReview | Spanish Guitar – Strumming Techniques by Edina Balczó

Spanish Guitar – Strumming Techniques – by Edina Balczó


Today’s review is all about Edina Balczó’s brand-new book entitled
Spanish Guitar – Strumming Techniques.

The Spanish guitar style, including its probably most popular style called Flamenco, is
becoming more and more popular as the sound and the techniques involved in Spanish style pieces are very unique and appeal to both the amateur and veteran player.

If you are not familiar with Edina Balczó, you may want to look up her YouTube channel
called The Spanish Guitar Hub where you will find many of the techniques covered in this book being used.

This book sets itself the goal of teaching you vibrant Spanish-style guitar rhythms that are closely related to a flamenco type of playing but clearly separates itself from being a pure flamenco method.

According to the author, this book is not intended to teach the style known as Flamenco
but uses techniques that are widely known from that particular style.
Let’s have a look at the content of the book…
1 How to Read TAB and Traditional Music Notation
2 The Duration of Notes and Rests
3 Guitar Parts and Terminology
4 Basic Chord Construction
5 Major and Minor Chords, and the CAGED System
6 Major Seventh, Minor Seventh, and Dominant Seventh Chords
7 Basic Rumba Technique
8 Rumba Technique Variations
9 Pulgar
10 Flamenco Triplet
11 Adding a Hit to the Flamenco Triplet and Variations
12 Replacing the Hits with Golpes
13 Rasgueado
14 Muted Rasgueado
15 Rasgueado Variations
16 Hammer-on and Pull-off
17 Tango with Rasgueado
18 Alzapua as a Strumming Technique
19 Drumming Techniques on Spanish Guitar
20 Quiz Solutions
21 Thank you Notes
22 About the Author
23 Recommended Books
24 Kickstarter Supporters
From the book’s content we can clearly see that the target audience for the book is a mixture of both beginner level players as well as more advanced players who want to delve deeper into the Spanish guitar style.

The book starts out with basic music theory such as reading TAB and traditional music
notation and by explaining the very basics of the guitar and common terminology as well
as the basics in note reading (i.e. durations etc.). That’s a pretty clear indication that the
book is also aimed at the beginner who may have been inspired by that very unique style
of playing the instrument.

Since we are talking about learning the rhythmic part of that particular style, we need to
talk about chords. This book covers this topic in three chapters. The first chapter teaches
the basics of chords such as chord construction and the closely related topic of intervals.
The second chapter covering concepts such as major and minor chords, which is still
something every beginner will find very helpful as well as a more advanced concept called CAGED system, which is mainly about movable chord shapes that open up the fretboard. Going beyond these basic chords, Edina moves on discussing the whole family of major chords in their major, minor and dominant variants.

After having dealt with the different chords and their voicings that you are going to use in your rhythm playing, Edina moves on introducing the basic techniques of Rumba. Rumba is a very powerful style that has lots of momentum going in it, requiring you as a player to be able to play and transform the rhythmical ideas by accentuating correctly. In the first section you learn a basic rumba sequence that you are going to practice on later on, given one of the many exercises Edina provides throughout the book.

After having practiced the basic techniques, you are led further to the more advanced
techniques as well as some technique variations including golpe and percussive elements to further underline your accentuated rhythm playing. Furthermore, you will be taught the pulgar as well as common flamenco triplets and the infamous rasgueado with some of its variations.

What I like a lot about this particular book is the conscious approach to what students really need when learning something new on an instrument, and that is a solid selection of exercises and little studies to further improve their technique on the newly acquired
concepts. This book is full of exercises that give you more than enough possibilities to
explore the individual techniques covered in the book. These exercises are meant to forge your technical abilities in an area that is essential for that particular style of playing.
All in all, my impression of this book is a great one. I loved reading the book, going over
some of the numerous exercises and chapters in the book. The individual techniques are
well described as well as underlined with the studies that follow each chapter.
Throughout the book you are being confronted with small quizzes that test your knowledge in a particular area, simulating a real teacher-student situation.

I definitely enjoyed spending my time with this book and learnt something along the way
in a fun and entertaining fashion. A great book by a passionate guitar player who put her
heart into this very book that is meant to make you a better player.
Lukas Wedrychowski
Meridirhproductions.com – ‘cause music matters

50 Right Hand Techniques You Must Know by Muriel Anderson and Truefire.com

50 Right Hand Techniques You Must Know by Muriel Anderson and Truefire.com


Author:             Muriel Anderson

Genre:              Acoustic / Universal

Style:                Fingerstyle / Universal

Level:                Beginner / Late Beginner / Intermediate / Late Intermediate / Advanced

Features:          Tabs (.pdf) & GP5 files

Lessons:          53 Videos (incl. introduction & conclusion) | 150 Minutes



Have you ever wanted a compendium of right hand techniques for your guitar? Have you ever faced the question which technique to practice next? If the answer is yes then do not stop reading since I have got a course for you that might easily answer all your questions.

50 Right Hand Techniques You Must Know by Muriel Anderson, published by Truefire.com, is a collection of no less than fifty techniques you can use with your right hand. No matter if you are into Blues, into Jazz, Folk, Funk, etc. here in this course you’ve got all you need to further refurnish your fingerpicking technique on the guitar.


Many styles share common techniques, such as palm muting, harmonics, percussion and tapping. With that being said, in this course you are going to learn something universal; something that you can apply over various musical styles, stunning your audience with techniques that not only look great but also give your playing a distinctive touch!

If you are a songwriter you may consider implementing some of these techniques into your songs to make them more challenging or more fun to play. Who knows, maybe you can use these techniques as inspirations to create own techniques, own variations that you will be known for.

With all that summarizing the course per se, what can you actually expect from the course? Well, let me provide you with an answer to it: Over the course of 50 lessons, you are going to be introduced to a particular technique, with a high-quality video in which the lecturer, in this case Muriel Anderson, explains, illustrates and breaks down the technique.

You are not only going to receive visual input, but also auditory! Listening to how the technique should sound like and watch Muriel playing it almost simulates a 1on1 session with an instructor.


Do not forget that whatever the technique might be that you are learning, you are still required to put effort into it and practice the technique. Some of the techniques in this course, such as hand position, thumb position and palm muting, are very basic, very simple and should belong to everyone’s repertoire of right hand techniques. However, if you are into Flamenco and all the Spanish guitar styles you are certainly familiar with the different types of strokes that exist; i.e. Rasgueado.

The courses are clear cut and well structured. In my opinion, they partially even increase in difficulty which is great if you want to challenge you with each lesson. However, the only drawback I see with them is that there is no additional material for the viewer to practice. So what you have got here is literally a course that introduces you and shows and explains you the various right hand techniques that exist, rather than a workshop in which you are encouraged to further practice your newly acquired skills.

On the other side, considering what this course contains, you are most likely to be busy for a very long time, no matter how long the videos are. Those techniques are, not by chance, considered the very fundamentals of right hand techniques and you are well advised to spend some time and work on them. It will be beneficial; not just for you, giving you the feeling of accomplishment, but also for your audience, who will be bound to your playing and admire the techniques and sounds that you are able to create thanks to your finely forged technique.

I feel really good about this course; there is something for all types of players as well as all levels of players. You get clear cut video instructions to practice the learnt techniques at home. I, for my part, am happy that I was able to have a look at this course and I would definitely recommend it to my students! Well done Muriel Anderson and definitely well done Truefire.com for providing such an important toolbox for each single guitarist out there!


Lukas Wedrychowski

MeridirhProductions – ‘cause music matters


This DVD was provided by Truefire.com

#Let’s Review | Soleares Flamenco Guidebook by John Fillmore and Truefire.com

Soleares Flamenco Guidebook by John Fillmore and Truefire.com

Author:          John Fillmore

Genre:            Flamenco

Style:              Acoustic Fingerstyle/Flamenco

Level:             Intermediate / Late Intermediate

Features:        Tabs (.pdf) & GP5 files

Lessons: 29 Videos (incl. introduction & conclusion) | 72 Minutes

  1. Soleares
  2. Half Compás
  3. Solo Flamenco Guitar
  4. Technique and Posture
  5. Pulgar
  6. Alzapua
  7. Rasgueado
  8. Picado
  9. Apregio
  10. Tremolo
  11. Golpes
  12. Ligados
  13. Flamenco Solo Piece (Elements)
  14. Intro Soleá
  15. Falseta 1
  16. Compás
  17. Falseta 2
  18. Falseta 3
  19. Quejillo
  20. Escobillas
  21. Combination Falseta
  22. Tremolo Falseta
  23. Llamada
  24. Popular Falseta
  25. Falseta Alzapua
  26. Cierre
  27. Complete Soleares

Flamenco has always been a style that attracted people from all around the globe. If you are among those who have always wanted to get started in Flamenco guitar, learning about the style as such as well as developing your basics techniques that will be your bread and butter skills while developing a sense for this style, then I’m inviting to go ahead and read this review on Truefire.com‘s Soleares Flamenco Guidebook.

Your instructor, John Fillmore, began to play the style of Flamenco in the tender age of 12, performing with a Flamenco dance group at the age of 14. During his career, Mr. Fillmore moved to Cordoba (Spain) to study at the Centro Flamenco and later to Rotterdam, becoming the first graduate teacher and performer of the Flamenco guitar.

So, what does this course look like? This course’s structure is technically following the approach “learning by doing”. This means that you are, in typical Truefire-fashion, playing your way through the course because you’re given an aim to work towards to. The goal of this course is to teach you the basic techniques of Flamenco guitar, the infamous techniques known as pulgar, alzapua, rasgueado, tremolo, to name just a few, but at the same time work towards a completed piece. Many methods, be it basic instrument methods or style methods, teach you the techniques but miss on utilizing them so that you can apply what you’ve just learnt. With this course’s structure and way of teaching you are going to implement what you have just learnt on a true Flamenco piece. You’re given instruction to practice a complete Soleares, a piece which’s style is said to be the mother of all Flamenco forms. That way you can take a piece – that by the way sounds amazing – and practice something you can perform in front of others but also your technique. I really like this approach that is a trademark of Truefire.com courses.

Once you’ve nailed the basic techniques which, even for long-time fingerstyle guitarists, may still be challenging due to the interesting voicing that you need to achieve, controlling the compás (rhythm) as well as the different thumb techniques required to induce the flair of Soleares that will pin your audience to your playing, you are ready to learn the individual parts of the piece. You start out with an introduction to the basic elements, moving on to the soleá, the falsetas, escobillas, llamada as well as cierra and remate to finally close out your piece. Each of those elements is part of traditional flamenco music in which you will learn how those pieces are divided and what essential part the guitar is playing in it.

Then you are finally able to play what might very well be your first Flamenco piece, incorporating the techniques that you’ve gathered throughout the course and which you can perfect while practicing the Soleares.

The course comes with 19 .pdf-charts, including the notation in mixed tab and classical form. You get those .pdf files for both the small etudes that introduce the various techniques as well as the full notation for the complete piece that you’ve learnt. For those of you who prefer to work with GuitarPro, you also receive .gp5 files that you can open on your computer, print it out or alter in a way you want that accompanies your playing/practicing.

The quality of the video and audio footage is top-notch as known from Truefire.com. I’m really looking forward seeing more Flamenco courses coming up on Truefire.com as I know from the comment section that this is one of the most requested styles. This doesn’t come as a surprise since this course is widely regarded as something mythical, something that touches the very soul of the people that are listening to it and make them connect.

Well done Mr. Fillmore. I highly recommend your Soleares Flamenco Guidebook by Truefire.com.

Lukas Wedrychowski

MeridirhProductions – ‘cause music matters


This course was provided by Truefire.com