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So you want to learn classical guitar?

Elvis Elvis

As with jazz, it takes years of discipline and practicing good technique to learn classical guitar. There are subtle differences between this type of guitar and other acoustics that require perfect posture and form, unlike rock guitar which allows much more freedom of style and playing technique.

Classical music, folk music, salsa, and Brazilian jazz utilize the sound of the classical guitar. Joao Gilberto helped to popularize bossa nova music in the early 1960s and some famous jazz guitarists, like Antonio Carlos Jobim, brought the style to the forefront of modern jazz. As a result many musicians were inspired to learn classical guitar.

So you want to learn classical guitar?

Anyone who is casual about learning the guitar need not take up classical guitar studies. Learning classical guitar requires far more than a desire to strum your favorite tunes. It is a serious study requiring years of discipline and hard work. The guy playing the classical beauty below shows techniques that took time to develop.

For one thing, you have to have a specific posture while playing, including how you hold the guitar and how you pluck or strike the strings – no wild Pete Townshend windmills here!

The study of the classical guitar will also require many tedious repetitive exercises to reinforce the correct positionings of the body and hands. If you want to listen to some of the masters of classical guitar to hear how it is played, check out the recordings of Andres Segovia, one of the world’s greatest ever, or John Williams, Julian Bream, Liona Boyd, or Laurindo Almeida, to name just a few.

In short, you can get yourself a guitar, learn four or five chords, and amuse yourself endlessly playing hundreds of classic rock, blues, or folk songs, but if you want to study the classical guitar, be prepared to work hard, cultivate discipline, hire a professional instructor, and practice, practice, practice!