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(003/365) December 1, 2010: My classical guitar instructor at Lafayette | by Jason Alley
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(003/365) December 1, 2010: My classical guitar instructor at Lafayette

Each Wednesday this semester I've met with Laura Oltman, my guitar instructor, to learn how to begin playing classical guitar. My skills aren't that well developed, but it's still early on in the process. She's an amazing guitarist and an insanely patient instructor. One of her big mantras is to play each piece at a speed comfortable (read slow) enough that I can play it successfully. For this week and for the last two weeks of lessons she has me working on playing a modified "Silent Night" accompaniment in the key of D. It's a lot of fun, but getting back into the key of D has been a struggle since it requires three fingers to make the chord. Moving into G or A7 hasn't been a big deal since she has me playing inversions of each chord, which allows me to play them by only holding down one string.

 

Tonight she gave me some strategies for moving from G or A7 into the D chord. Here she is tuning my guitar using harmonics, which is a way to produce high pitched sounds from the bass strings making it easier to tune notes between the bass and treble strings.

 

I'm hoping to continue on with her at least through the spring.

 

She and her husband's official site: www.guitarduo.com

 

(Check out the video of her playing her guitar behind behind her head on "Wipeout.")

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Taken on December 1, 2010