The vast majority of flamenco guitar transcriptions on the market today are of solo flamenco guitar and solo-oriented flamenco guitarists. Part of the reason for this is the rapid evolution of flamenco guitar since the 1970s. The solo work of the great accompanists of the past may sound crude and simple to us today: not just primitive, as this may entail more traditional or emotive playing, but simply outdated and lacking in interesting ideas. However, close examination of the accompaniment of those great players reveals highly developed levels of skill that would challenge many of today’s extremely talented guitarists. Old-school accompaniment was based on strong right-hand articulation and rhythmic precision, and it offers examples of techniques that are falling into disuse such as thumbed single-note lines. Accompaniment playing is normally more traditional, less extravagant, more respectful of rhythm, less convoluted and more understated: all desirable elements in great works of art.
I used audio processing software to slow down the recordings for transcription. Each falseta has been analyzed dozens of times: Alternative fingerings have been considered; multiple takes of the same falseta have been taken into account, as well as similar falsetas from other guitarists; video has been checked when available; and each transcription has been contrasted with its source by playing it against the orginal recording at normal speed. In addition to this, I have spent years playing the falsetas and checking their accuracy. Although several falsetas appear on the original recordings with imprecise phrasing, the accuracy of the transcriptions can be guaranteed in over 95% of the cases in all three collections.
Today, most guitarists study the work of the great Paco de Lucía, who remains the point of reference in today's guitar playing. He owed his success to his enormous talent, but the guitarists before him also paved the way, and, in many cases, laid the foundations for some of his ideas. The artists presented here are generally his elders, and in some cases his mentors (Ricardo, Sabicas). These artists formed the base from which Paco and others created modern flamenco guitar.
Whether for learning tradition or forging the next link in its chain, these studies will provide historical perspective of great value to the guitarist. You will be able to analyze the different elements present in bulerías, soleares and siguiriyas falsetas and the ways these elements have been handled by flamenco guitarists over the last one hundred years. The collections also provide an excellent method for strengthening your hands and developing certain techniques (more on this below). Each falseta has been labeled to aid in reorganization for analysis. You can organize falsetas by guitarist, year of recording, key, technique used or musical idea. All of this information is included in the collections. In this way, the evolution of an idea may be traced throughout time, offering perspective on how guitarists handled the same situations, the earlier elements they retained, and the variations they added. We can also witness the impact of such greats as Ramón Montoya, Niño Ricardo and Manuel Morao, whose work echoes throughout. Insight is provided on the ancestral form of the soleá dating back to the café cantante period: faster, more rhythmic and more closely related to dancing. The ever-expanding harmonic palette in guitar playing can also be traced through the musical structures used in the older falsetas that, over time, led to more sophisticated harmonies. The collections offer an idea of the art of pioneering flamenco guitarists like Maestro Patiño and Paco Lucena, as the oldest guitarists presented here studied directly with them (Habichuela, Molina) or were only a generation or two away (Borrull, Montoya). Diverse regional playing styles are represented, as well, with exponents from Cádiz, Jerez, Morón, Sevilla and other areas.
All three collections include introductory texts on the techniques, rhythms, terminology and symbols used in the standard notation and tablature. The soleá and siguiriyas collections include summaries that group the falsetas according to the techniques or musical ideas (alzapúa, arpeggio, picado, rasgueado, tremolo, etc.) The siguiriyas collection includes a summary of 49 cierres and remates to end your falsetas. The bulerías collection includes a summary of 16 different rasgueados (only one of which is abanico) and 15 basic rhythm patterns from Melchor, Morao, Cepero, Parrilla and Rafael Alarcón.
At the end of 2020, I revised the scores of this website with MuseScore notation software, but the scores of the falseta collections remain in the previous format. In order to avoid any confusion, I have uploaded a screenshot from one of the PDFs. As you can see, the time values (stems and beams) are indicated in the tablature of the soleá and siguiriya collections and the tablature numbers appear in a bolder font in all three collections. It is also worth noting that the falsetas are identified in Spanish and English in the MP3s of the bulería collection and in Spanish only in the soleá and siguiriya collections.
The number of falsetas of each artist is indicated in parentheses. Click here for more information on these artists.
Ramón Montoya (6), Luis Molina (2), Antonio Moreno (5), Manolo de Huelva (2), Miguel Borrull hijo (1), Perico del Lunar padre (3), Sabicas (1), Niño Ricardo (11), Manolo de Badajoz (8), Melchor de Marchena (5), Diego del Gastor (4), Eduardo el de la Malena (1), Antonio Arenas (1), Juan Carmona (4), Pepe Carmona (1), Juan Maya "Marote" (4), el Poeta (1), Ramón Gómez (1), Manuel Morao (36), Paco Cepero (20), Manuel Parrilla (23), Juan Morao (1), Rafael Alarcón (3), Enrique de Melchor (1).
TOTAL: 145 falsetas (94 por medio, 28 por arriba, 18 in A major, 3 in E major and 2 in A minor)
Juan Gandulla "Habichuela" (4), Javier Molina (8), Antonio Moreno (4), el Hijo de Salvador (12), Ramón Montoya (36) Niño Pérez (3), Manolo de Badajoz (8), Perico del Lunar padre (1), Antonio Delgado (3), Miguel Borrull hijo (1), Niño Ricardo (17), Paco Aguilera (8), Melchor de Marchena (59), Diego del Gastor (8), Sabicas (1), Andrés Heredia (5), Eduardo el de la Malena (7), el Poeta (10), Manolo de Brenes (5), Manuel Morao (5), Félix de Utrera (3), Antonio Arenas (5), Juan Carmona (4), Juan Maya "Marote" (1), Perico del Lunar hijo (5), Manuel Parrilla (2), Diego de Morón (9), Enrique de Melchor (2).
TOTAL: 236 falsetas (177 por arriba and 59 por medio)
Juan Gandulla "Habichuela" (6), Javier Molina (7), Antonio Moreno (1), el Hijo de Salvador (2), Ramón Montoya (20), Niño Pérez (3), Manolo de Badajoz (9), Perico del Lunar padre (1), Miguel Borrull hijo (4), Niño Ricardo (21), Melchor de Marchena (36), Diego del Gastor (8), Sabicas (1), Andrés Heredia (6), Eduardo el de la Malena (2), el Poeta (10), Manolo de Brenes (7), Antonio Arenas (2), Félix de Utrera (5), Manuel Morao (8), Juan Carmona (4), Juan Morao (10), Manuel Parrilla (4), Diego de Morón (1), Jose Luis Postigo (1), Diego Carrasco (1).
TOTAL: 180 falsetas (146 por medio, 30 por arriba and 4 in A major)
Each collection has about 70 pages and is available in PDF format. Each falseta appears in standard notation and tablature and in MP3 audio. Please read the following information. For further information, please email me at the following address:
Each collection with MP3s costs 40 euros. There are no shipping costs as I will send you the PDF and MP3 files as email attachments, the largest of which is almost 15 megabytes.
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2) Bank transfer in euros. This is a very quick and easy payment method, although it will depend on how much your bank will charge you to place a transfer in euros to an account in Spain. Please ask your bank about this first and contact me for further details.