Folias – a little tremolo study

I used to give this piece to all my pupils in their first months of playing guitar… and they have no idea then that they learn something considered “difficult”!
Tremolo is the base for a perfect right hand, you learn how to treat the fingers “democratically”, dynamic control, speed of relaxation, speed of movement and tone quality balanced between all fingers can be learned with this technique.
So here a video of me playing it at home:

and the sheet music

Heike Matthiesen: Folias
Heike Matthiesen: Folias

Enjoy!

Why you should also play music you don’t like

It is one of the myths that musicians always play music to which they have a deep connection, which inspires them, which transports a secret message…
But sometimes a piece matches to a program which is on your “private blacklist”, music you don’t like to listen to and you never in your life wanted to play. ( Confess it: every musician has a list like this in his head….).

But to embrace a piece which you don’t like can be one of the most powerful lessons for all your preperation routines:
1) You don’t want to work it – so be efficient!
2) You don’t enjoy hearing it – you never get carried away from practising into just fun playing! ( important in EVERY piece you are working to know when it is work time or pleasure)
3) You need to “sell” it – find a way that maybe also you but for sure the audience enjoys listening, so look at it with the loving eyes of its composer or with the eyes of researcher showing why this piece is important for this special program or instrumental history

…. and maybe you will fall in love with it then also!!!

P.S.: I will not tell you which piece inspired me to this blogpost – and you should never give anybody your private blacklist, especially your audience should NEVER be able to find out which pieces are on it!

Periscope for musicians

The latest hype right now: Periscope!
But how to use it as musician?
You broadcast directly, no way to edit it. And without hacks not possible to be downloaded- screenshots possible. So it means this is a perfect tool for everything that should be shared directly and live ( did you see how much Periscope is already used for breaking news?):
1. Viewing concert and opera from backstage ( I saw opera from la Scala)
2. Masterclasses ( Verbier broadcasted them)
3. Lectures ( for example I saw some history speeches of the Alhambra)
4. Playing at home ( John Mayer, Al di Meola and many more)
5. Showing technique, tips and tricks of your instrument
6. Announcing recent events
7. All kind of messages to your fans
8. Question and answer sessions with your fans ( Gohar!)
9. Let them share a little bit of your life ( had breakfast with blogger Sasha Pallenberg in Taipeh)

First steps:
Make sure your Periscope account is connected to your Twitter, update your Twitter bio, because this will be your bio on Periscope. Make sure you mention there your “key words” like “Classical guitar” etc. You will be found via them in Periscope search, plus name search of course.
Like in every other nonmutual network: Follow a lot of people! You will get insides how they use Periscope and they will see that you are there, check their followinglists also to find interesting people and collegues.
I follow now around 500 people, most of them connected with classical music.So Periscope turns into a really specialised live TV🙂

Practical advices:
When you click on the little broadcast in the right down corner you will see this ( of course in your language..)
Periscope
FIRST create a senseful title – if you want to keep your broadcasts connected to your profession- otherwise you risk to attract people who just want to flirt etc…..
Then click on the little Twitter icon so your broadcast will be announced there, it will enlarge your audience immensely
Then check if you want to broadcast publically or not- then go for it and click on “start”.
Attention: There is not yet a possibility to start directly with your front camera, you switch directly after starting with doubletapping on the screen, but your first picture will be the thumbnail so make sure that it is a senseful view when you start!
Have fun now!
You can read the comments of your live audience ( same you can comment when you watch somebody live), all other live viewers will see the comments too, you will see who is online, the way to show appreciation is sending hearts. It will feel weird at first to communicate like this, but sooner or later it is really like talking!
You finish with swiping down the screen- and then you have the possibility to decide wether erase it or to leave it for the public for the next 24 hours, I would recommend this for all kind of professional stuff – thinking of time zones around the world.

I am right now “playing” with it, trying to figure out which possibilities are interesting for us professional musicians, so this are just my first experiences after some weeks.
Do you have some more ideas how to use it?

Recording my new CD

A little diary, I just came home from studio:
December 2015: Decided to go to studio in April 2015.
That is soooo far away, completely relaxed trying new pieces for the CD, changing the order of the program, practising all the stuff for my normal “work”.
January 2015
This recording I want to do something better than the last time: Having booklet etc ready when I go to studio.
Still not knowing which pieces exactly to record, but April still is sooooo far away.
But starting to do test recordings at home and to play the program for the musician whom I trust completely ( Thanks, Inge!).
Lots of sports.
February 2015
okay, March I will have many concerts, so really starting to focus on the CD. Social Media starting to disappear from my everyday life, starting to tell friends if we could talk or meet after the recording.
Deciding what to record plus the order. More test recordings, less conversations with the real world.
Lots of sports.
March 2015
The plan was besides tough concert schedule to play once a day a runthrough. Forget it! The old professional rule: “The next work is the most important!”
Starting to turn into a helicoptermum for my hands.
Last minute gigs including Flamenco arriving ( brushing up my rasgueado-OMG, the nails!).
Less sports, more chocolate.
Two weeks before going to studio
Oh, I completely forgot the booklet…
Panic for my fingers, starting to wear gloves, my home turning more and more into chaos, almost impossible for outside world to talk to me on the phone.
No more sports, just a little stretching after work, lots of chocolate
One week before the recording
Just can’t wait anymore to finish the CD!!!!!!!!
Home in messie status, brain cool and focussed- and nails and hands still perfect.
Missing my daily sports – and no more desire to eat chocolate.
studio
Day 1: recording as many pieces as possible
Day 2: recording tough pieces
Day 3: recording the beasts, those pieces where you have to cross your own limits.

Returning home, unloading the luggage, breaking my thumbnail.

Recording session
Recording session

Fingers
Fingers

Facebook

Facebook is getting more and more a difficult place for musicians. We once believed that giving our content and our data was enough paying, but Facebook pages which many of us use as second ( or first) homepage are less and less visible without paying more and more money…
We have seen Myspace disappearing and with it all the energy we had put there to share our music, so it is really time to rethink our socialmedia strategies.
I see just one solution:
Having a wellkept homepage, building a good newsletter- and everything you share in the net should appear in different places too!
I personally love to use Twitter and especially google+ ( Hey, you are in the social media of THE search engine), but I see there many abandoned zombie profiles of fellow musicians.
If you are used to the mutual system of Facebook it is in the beginning quite a change to go to a non-mutual place and it is not enough to create a profil and believe that people will find you…
In a nonmutual you have to do the next step and that is searching what you want to read:
Twitter is my culture newspaper, I am following all the culture news I can find, musicians and some nonsense to have fun. ( Calling it “my playground”)
Google+ is a place to be professionell ( Hey, you are in the social… etc), fill out the profile as precise as possible and connect your youtube channel with the profile there! ( Calling it “business fair”)
In nonmutual networks I see the crucial number of 500, if you are following minimum 500 pages/profiles, you start to discover what those networks can offer.

So I am giving you some starter kits:

Twitter:
Classical guitar 1
Classical guitar 2
classical music
And spend half an hour to search for your newspapers, local news…

Google+ :
classical guitar
classical guitar community
and search for what you love to read! ( Hey, you are in …) about music, news or your local stuff!

I do not use automatic postings, but you can tell FB to post to Twitter, or with for example IFTTT create system of autoposting. I prefer to copy and paste the basic info, shorten it for Twitter, use the layout possibilities of google+ .. and to tag all the people in each network that are mentioned in my postings!
And I comment a lot and I love to give stars, plusses and likes to show that I read and appreciated posts of yours!!
I hope this was helpful, we all give a lot of energy for our music and classical music and we have limited time…

P.S: Facebook I call “The bar around the corner”, where you meet your friends!

10 classical guitar print magazines adressbook

1) Akustik Gitarre Acoustic Music GmbH
Jahnstrasse 1a
49078 Osnabrück (Deutschland)

2) Gitarre Aktuell
Schlüterstrasse 77/77a
Postfach 131081
20110 Hamburg (Deutschland)

3) Seicorde
Viale Lombardia, 5
20131 Milano (Italia)

4) Soundboard
769 NE 72 Terrace
Miami FL 33138 (USA)

5) Classical guitar
1&2 Vance Court, TransBritannia Enterprise Park
Blaydon on Tyne NE 21 5 NH (UK)

6) Gendai Guitar Magazine
1-16-14 Chihaya, Tashimi-ku
Tokyo 171 00 44 (Japan)

7) Il Fronimo
via Orti,14
20122 Milano (Italia)

8) журнал гнгарнст
125635 г.москва А/Я 68 (Russia)

9) Guitare classique
14 rue Corneille
91270 Vigneux sur Seine (France)

10) Gitarr och Luta
Dösvägen 31
22654 Lund (Sweden)

classical guitar charts in Facebook pages

Classical guitar charts of active and living soloist with more than 1000 fans (number of likes from the 4th 11, circa 15 pm)

1. Berta Rojas 54,780 like

2. Edoardo Catemario 34,709 likes

3. Ana Vidovic 34,o43 likes

4. David Russell 21,951 likes

5. Milos Karadaglic 18,741 likes

6. Pirai Vaca 16,327 likes

7. Pepe Romero 15,031 likes

8. Lily Afshar 14,347 likes

9. Cristiano Porqueddu 13,310 likes

10. Tariq Harb 12,739 likes

11. Liona Boyd 9,566 likes

12. Pablo Sainz Villegas 9,277 likes

13. Manuel Barrueco 8,069 likes

14. Julian Bream 6,101 likes ( ??? problems with the site)

15. Andrew York 6,890 likes

16, Marcin Dylla 6,527 likes

17. Sharon Isbin 6,316 likes

18. Eliot Fisk 6,225 likes

19. Roland Dyens 5,284 likes

20. John Williams  4,824 likes

21. Thibault Cauvin  4,359 likes

22. Heike Matthiesen 4,185 likes

23. Vladimir Gorbach 4,182 likes

24. Kaori Muraji 3,962 likes

25. Tatyana Ryzhkova – Official 3,791 likes

26. Scott Tennant 3,228 likes

27. Antigoni Goni 2,998 likes

28. Sabrina Vlaskalic 2,889 likes

29. Xuefei Yang 2,846 likes

30. William Kanengiser 2,751 likes

31. Galina Vale 2,750 likes

32. Gabriel Bianco 2,646 likes

33. Petar Čulić 2,269 likes

34. Pablo Garibay 2,170 likes

35. Artyom Dervoed 1,890 likes

36. Karin Schaupp 1,764 likes

37. Jorge Luis Zamora 1,696 likes

38. Dimitri Illarionov 1,632 likes

39. Zoran Dukic 1,556 likes

40. Shin-ichi Fukuda 1,550

41. Elena Papandreou 1,537 likes

42. Gaëlle Solal 1,520 likes

43. Judicaël Perroy, Classical Guitarist 1,486 likes

44. Maestro Angel Romero 1,354 likes

45. Carlo Marchione 1,264 likes

46. Luz Maria Bobadilla, guitarrist 1,170 likes

47. Roberto Aussel 1,130 likes

48. Guitarist Susan McDonald 1,065 likes

49. Ian Watt 1,029 likes

I am sure I forgot some pages, next update around christmas I will include them!