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Albert Valdes-Blain

A Tribute by Harry Pellegrin, a Son Linked by the Guitar,

to a Mentor and Father

Albert Valdes-Blain

(10 April 1921 - 30 January 2002)


I met Albert Blain in 1974. I had heard of him by reputation, of course. The guitar teacher who had brought me along to that point at which I was ready to undertake a study of the classical guitar at the college level, well, he had admonished me when he'd heard with whom I would be studying. With much the same advise as Mary had given the servants at the marriage feast at Cana, he'd told me "Whatever he tells you to do, just do it!"

Born in Havana Cuba in 1921, Albert Blain was still a New Yorker--he'd lived in the City since 1923, the year his parents brought him and brother Roland to the United States. His father had chosen the guitar for Albert and Roland. The two would become a duo performance act, recording extensively in the 1940's and 1950's.

Albert Blain studied with Andres Segovia , the performer and educator who is truly the father of the Classical Guitar revival of the 20th century. After retiring from the world's concert stage, Blain opened a guitar studio on 13th Street in Manhattan.

So there I stood on the doorstep of Albert Blain's apartment on the South side of 13th Street. I did not know what to expect. I feared the worst -- an autocratic, dictatorial, uncompromising, harsh master. I rang the bell and waited. It was a friday afternoon, four o'clock and I was the last student of the afternoon. The door swung open and there stood Mr. Blain. I was ushered into a long room lined with artwork, plants, hardwood floors and leather furniture. A double music stand occupied a space close to the windows, two grand piano-style benches and footstools faced the stand. A brace of guitar stands flanked this tableau, each held a priceless Herman Hauser classical guitar. I didn't know the book value of these instruments at the tender age of seventeen, but they sure looked impressive.

Albert Blain was associated or on the faculty of any college in the New York City area that sported a guitar program of any repute whatsoever. He was on the faculty of Bronx Community College, The Mannes College of Music, and Brooklyn College by the 1970's. Little did guitar players from the Bronx, signing on at the Community College, realize just how top-shelf a teacher they would soon be molded by!

John Martelli and I both attended Bronx Community College and were guitar majors. We both had our lessons on Friday afternoons -- back to back, so we soon began car-pooling together. We both were astounded by our fortune. Although my old teacher had told me the Blain was an outstanding player and amazingly gifted teacher, he never told me about the recordings, the studies with Segovia, the published book -- the stature of the man.

Albert Blain was a mortal man with all the life-experience and heartbreak that most people have. He had a son, I believe his name is Robert. Whether through death or divorce, Mr. Blain was without permanent female companionship when I met him. He never lacked a female escort at concerts or artistic receptions. My intent is not to discuss the man's private affairs, so no more will be written of these matters.

Michael Newman, sixteen year-old wunderkind, having debuted at Carnegie hall that Spring of '74, was the toast of New York City's classical guitar community and also a student of Albert Blain. Michael was (And is, I am sure) a technically superb player with an interpretive edge that was years ahead of what his youthful countenance might otherwise indicate. He had begun his studies with Albert Blain at a rather young age and was about to attend Mannes College.

[Photo at right: Albert Blain playing a Ramirez 1a in his apartment on the North side of 13th Street circa 1975.]

In 1976, I graduated from Bronx Community College and decided to continue my studies with Mr. Blain while going for my Bachelor's at The Mannes College of Music. There was always the slim possibility I would be assigned a different guitar teacher at Mannes, but my fears were put to rest when I got my first schedule. It seemed to me that the Blain students were of a different temperament than the students of the other Mannes guitar faculty. Blain's students seemed to be the rock n rollers of the classic guitar world -- showmen with gobs of technique and fire. Bob Secrist and David Livingstone were students of Leonid Bolotine who is described elsewhere on this site--and both of them were players of the 'Blain Temperament', breaking the rule. "Big Tone!" "Big Sound!" were comments most often heard by Blain's students. He wanted his disciples to fill a recital hall -- with people, yes, but more importantly -- with sound! And not just any sound, the heavy, sweet sound of a Ramirez 1a. In 1976, Mr. Blain (or Uncle Al as us disrespectful little hooligans referred to him among ourselves) went to Spain and hand-selected an instrument for me from Ramirez' workshop. He chose well. I still play it after all these years and it still delivers sumptuous rich and balanced tone.

Albert Blain did not rely solely upon the whims and fancy of musical stylings and students for his income. It was reported that he was also part owner of the five-star Spain Restaurant on 13th Street between the Avenue of the Americas and Seventh.

I became good friends with Chris Hnottavange, another of Blain's students while at Mannes. An anecdote from 1979 really shows the kind of person Mr. Blain was. Chris was a starving artist, working in a copy shop on Lexington Avenue part time while trying to go to school full-time, practice a program for a graduation recital, and pay for an apartment on 85th Street. Food was not something Chris was budgeted for. I too was off my feed. My Dad had been diagnosed with cancer and between the lethargy of depression and hours spent sitting in hospital rooms, there was little time or desire for food. Chris and I had both lost enough weight that we could have passed for pale Ethiopians. One afternoon, Blain looked at the two of us for a moment then spoke. "No lessons today, we're having a field trip!" He knew the reasons behind our drastic weight loss. We were firmly escorted to the Spain Restaurant where Mr. Blain ordered a huge pot of paella and the biggest, thickest most tender steaks I have ever encountered. Once a portion of the food was consumed, the wine flowed. "And don't forget, we can do this any time !" he told us on the way out.

Albert Blain was not a fan of modern music and considered the electric guitar in any form to be an abomination. Even so, he was keenly aware that the electric guitar had motivated a good number of his students to move on (and up, he'd say) to the classical repertoire. "At least my students will be good at what they do and be able to support themselves." he'd say when we'd discuss gigs we had played on 'the abomination.'

I graduated Mannes in 1980, my Dad passed away in 1981. Mr. Blain announced to us that he would be retiring and moving to Spain permanently. I felt as if every mentor and role model in my life had abandoned me. I had always intended to continue studying with Blain after graduation, but I was out of school, out of work, out of money and to compound my stupidity I had taken a wife. There was no room for guitar lessons. I later heard that Mr. Blain had sold his Hausers to students of his for well below market value. That was so 'in-character' for him -- he'd want the instruments to have good homes with players who would love them for what they were and remember the man who had owned them. I spoke with Albert Blain for what I believe was the last time in 1982. "I'll send you a post card from Spain. They have great wine and terrific women in Spain!"

Maybe six months later I did indeed receive a post card. "I'd like to tell you guys that I miss you all" said the writing on the reverse side of a picture of a beach and bikini'd women "but it's just too nice here!" The postal cancellation had obliterated the return address.

In 1997, I ran internet searches for Albert Valdes Blain, but no information was available. Barry Lazarus, a fellow Blain student, emailed and wrote that as far as he knew Blain was still alive and well and living in Spain. I was overjoyed, but there was no contact information.

In 2003, I once again ran a Google search. This time I found Albert Blain. The obituary, dated August of 2002.

Funny how a few words on a flickering computer screen are all most people will ever know about Albert Blain. His book, 700 Years of Music for the Classical Guitar , is out of print, his recordings haven't been available in ages. You'll see him mentioned in many a famous performer's or instructor's resume, but you'll never hear about the humanity and kindness this gentleman of the guitar possessed. I am generating a chronicle here to let those who are interested know that Albert Blain was a terrific friend and mentor to a student. He didn't have to be this way to just another pimply kid with a guitar, it was his nature and character to be a hard task-master with a soft center. I will miss him with almost the same intensity that I miss my natural father. He imparted so much into my life, not just about the guitar, but about how to be a human being.

-- Harry G. Pellegrin, author of Low End and The Wreck of the Eddie Fitz


Harry George Pellegrin is an author of mystery novels, a musician and recording artist. Primarily a guitarist, Harry's latest recordings are keyboard-driven and most easily classified as New Age, though we don't like to consider the music in a 'genre box.' Harry G. Pellegrin's first published novel, LOW END, is a murder mystery set in South Yonkers and New York City in the late 1980's. The characters, all derived from friends and acquaintances, try to investigate the death of one of their own -- not so much to solve a crime, but to keep from sharing a similar fate. LOW END has been met with great critical acclaim. The sequel, DEEP END, is being shopped by a well-known literary agent at the time of this writing.

This page is designed for a number of reasons. We'll be honest, a primary goal is to expose a larger audience to Harry's music and writing. Another goal of the webmaster is to create a repository for the knowledge that years of experience in the performing arts industry has given Harry. Creating a chronicle of life in the Bronx in the 1960's and 1970's is another goal we hope to accomplish.

 

You've heard Harry's compositions on the Al Roney Radio Show on 810 WGY AM. Buy the album!

NEW TITLE!  CLICK HERE FOR SHEET MUSIC!

Thanks to all you wonderful people for coming out to the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall. Thanks from all of us to the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall Foundation and Time Warner Cable for sponsoring this concert series and my recital!

 

 

Check out my new guitar method.

This is the book you need!

 

 

 

 

The NEW REVISED SECOND EDITION of Low End is now available for purchase. This new edition includes scenes and colloquialisms removed from the first edition. This baby reads like Da Bronx, man! So even if you've read the book before, you haven't read it this way. New, lower price as well. Get LOW END on www.lulu.com now....

 

 

CLICK HERE to listen to an excerpt from the Schenectady Today Television broadcast of February 7, 2007. Ann Parillo hosts the Wednesday Edition and was kind enough to ask Harry to perform on this live broadcast. Be sure to watch the Schenectady Today Show on Time Warner Channel 16!

Get the recipe Harry Pellegrin prepared on the 'Schenectady Today' Program December 27, 2006! (Picture at left: Harry getting ready to play on the 12/27 show.)

And please visit Ann Parillo's Schenectady Today Program Website!

The recipe from August is still up and available for your dining pleasure!

 

The Store A neat collection of guitar-related items.

FREE GUITAR TECHNIQUE SESSIONS AND STRENGTH/DEXTERITY EXERCISES!!!

AVAILABLE NOW !

The Classic Guitar Method: Now in one volume, much of what the novice classical guitarist will need to know to lead him or her to the recital stage. From proper instrument care and maintenance to the necessary technical skills, musical mind-set, and the standard repertoire—all exposed and explored with enough detail and insight that the student will wish to keep this book handy years to come as a ready reference source.

With the aid of a good teacher, the student will rapidly progress through The Classic Guitar Method attaining technical proficiency and musical eloquence.

This method stems from the need to incorporate a number of schools into a single cohesive curriculum. Years of honing a logical approach to the guitar and the creation of music culminate in this volume. As a self-proclaimed Disciple of Valdés-Blain , much of that famed teacher's focus can be found in Mr. Pellegrin's method.

Why do we need another CLASSICAL GUITAR METHOD?

During the course of teaching guitar over the past twenty six years, I have often noted that no single method book contains all the information I wish my students to have readily available to them on a continuous basis. It has not been uncommon for me to assign as many as three methods to a new student—all good, by the way, but not one of them being all inclusive. This is not an unusual circumstance, and one I should have anticipated in my teaching experience as I distinctly remember Albert Valdés-Blain (10 April 1921—30 January 2002) assigning me a mind-numbing ten books at my first lesson, seven of them methods or collections of studies.

I consider myself a disciple of Valdés-Blain. I met him in 1974, though, of course, I had heard of him by reputation. An excellent musician and teacher, Lawrence Silvestro—who had brought me along to that point at which I was ready to undertake a study of the classical guitar at the college level—had admonished me when he'd heard with whom I would be studying. With much the same advice as Mary had given the servants at the marriage feast at Cana , Mr. Silvestro told me "Whatever he tells you to do, just do it!" So I did.

When I decided that the time was right for me to create a new method—one that would include all the necessary technical and musical disciplines to lead the serious student from neophyte hobbyist to burgeoning recitalist—I resisted the urge to call the Method something like ‘Maestro Valdés-Blain's School of Guitar' as this would imply that my method would accurately reflect his system of instruction and musical nurturing. While I do follow his precepts fairly consistently and faithfully, my method reflects his impartation to me and me alone. I did not intimately observe his method with other students but what I did witness leads me to presume that he tailored his approach to each individual, within logical constraints, no doubt. No less importantly, I had also modified my teaching methods to my own personality and style of instruction over the years. In short, this method echoes the classical approach of a well-known and much-loved pedagogue and student of Segovia , but is filtered through and expanded by a respectful devotee.

Is my method all-inclusive? In light of what I wrote previously, possibly not. It should be very close though! No method will be absolutely all-encompassing for every student. A good instructor will direct the student to studies and pieces that focus in on the student's particular weak areas. Aside from this, there is the legal ramification that any composition penned in the Twentieth Century is, of course, protected by copyright and while I can not include any such item here for this reason, I do direct the student to exemplary editions of milestone modern music. All the performance pieces and many of the studies are public domain. In the case of studies by Fernando Sor, Ferdinando Carulli, Mauro Giuliani, Napoleon Coste and the other classic masters, I have included my editions of some of their works. I then direct the student to complete editions from which these gems are drawn. The student can then choose to acquire these for further study. [Photo to left: Albert Valdés-Blain circa 1965.]

What my method does is expose the student to the technical disciplines required to effectively perform on the instrument and give enough basic recital repertoire that when the method is completed, the guitarist will be able to perform a recital of approximately forty-five minutes in length. I have included many tips and explanations that should shed light on the correct process of attempting to solve problems. Teach a student a solution and he has one problem solved. Teach a student to be a problem-solver and he or she is on the road to mastering the instrument.

Included in this book are sections on the correct interpretation of lute tablature in its varieties. Why? The lute enjoys one of the largest repertoires of any instrument ancient or modern. Much of this lute music remains untranscribed for the guitar, its modern descendant. The guitarist will want to mine this wealth of material for fresh program pieces.

Many students have asked me to recount the development of the guitar as the instrument we know today. So few people know exactly what a classical guitar even is: “Children's guitars have nylon strings while real guitars have steel strings.” Little do those who make this ridiculously false statement realize that some of the priciest, most desired instruments on the planet are nylon-strung classical guitars, so this book includes a section on history as well as instrument care.

Music is hard work. Mastering an instrument is an endeavor that requires more years than a lifetime can possibly ever contain. With that said, many will then ask ‘why bother?' It's a fair question and if you ask it, maybe playing an instrument is more a hobby for you and less a vocation. For those who begin their journey by considering it a vocation, it becomes an obsession; a passionate one that can never be fully satisfied. If you are fervent about playing the classical guitar—and playing it well—then this book, my method, may be the one book you need to make it all happen. Practice is crucial, critical listening is, well, critical. An awareness of musicality is more than vital—music is what it is all about and unless the performer can impart an emotion to humanity-at-large, then why bother?

Indeed, it can be stated that music is the most spiritual of all the arts. It is more fleeting than sand painting as once the sound has been produced, it is over and gone except for the image it leaves on the human heart. Recordings are wonderful, but they can never hope to capture the intrinsic veracity of a genuine, intimate live performance. The guitar is arguably the most intimate of all instruments; you must hug it to make music with it! Its relatively small voice requires the listener to draw close to the performer. This double dose of intimacy makes the guitar an incredibly personal and articulate voice for an artist. [Photo to right: Harry Pellegrin Nov. 1980.]

I wish you great success with music. Music will feed your soul in a way that nothing else can. I wish you equal success with the guitar. Attaining mastery of an instrument is a long road—a road with many rewards and more than its fair share of frustration. A good tutorial method will help you avoid some frustrations and work through others. There are poor paths and rough roads to be found. This method of mine, should you decide to let it, will put you on the right road, but this road doesn't end when you close the book. Should you decide to turn the page, I welcome you to the road you will travel for the rest of your life!

ISBN: 978-1-4116-9442-2

Published by PAB Entertainment Group, P.O. Box 2369 Scotia, New York 12302

Please go to www.lulu.com to order.

 

 

Covering a variety of topics and regularly updated, this feature is designed to help musicians of all levels achieve a higher level of professionalism.

 

 

Harry George Pellegrin's first keyboard album Reflecting Pools can be auditioned here. Visit this page link to hear samples...

The second album, In That Zone, has a page where one can hear samples as well. Follow this link...

Spa Anthology -- need relaxation music for your Day Spa or Facial and Massage Facility? Click here for hassle-free music.

If you are looking for some unique gifts, please consider either a copy of LOW END or one of Harry's fine CD's of inspirational and relaxing music.

LOW END is available through www.amazon.com and Reflecting Pools and In That Zone can be purchased through www.bathtubmusic.com. Thanks!

 

 

 

 

 

This is Georgio and his wife Lydia. Georgio is a master coffee roaster and can often be found custom-roastinggreen beans at the Plainview Fairway. Guitar: Paulino Bernabe. Favorite Composer: Agustin Barrios Mangore.

 

http://pellegrinlowend.com/bv03959.gifklassiskgitar.net : On this site You will find many free scores for beginner/student/amateur. The images and artwork on this site are quite beautiful and very worth checking out!

 

 

 

Helen is the kind of girl you dream about. She's smart and confident, funny and affectionate, and is killer good-looking. Gary has fallen for her hard. Even so, he is distracted by life's minor happenstances. It's those little things like, oh, crooked cops, shady club owners, illegal smuggling, and a few dead bodies.

Still, Gary can't keep his eyes off Helen.

Harry Pellegrin's mystery novel DEEP END is packed with eerily real and sinister characters, music, interesting locales, bizarre spiritualizm and a plethora of corpses. Couple this with an exceedingly clever plot and we have this year's best beach-read.

And there's Helen!

Read all about her in DEEP END: The Wreck of the Eddie Fitz




Buy Low End through PAB Entertainment Group on AMAZON.com. (Go to the USED AND NEW section) Not only will you get the book, but you'll also receive a FREE COPY of Reflecting Pools, Harry's first keyboard album. You will enjoy!

 

 

 

 

FREE GUITAR TECHNIQUE SESSIONS AND STRENGTH/DEXTERITY EXERCISES!!!

Do you know how to chain your effects pedals? Do you sound like a 'Wall of Oatmeal' sometimes? ALL the time? Check this out!

Can't read standard musical notation? If you can read the gas prices to the left, sure you can! Please see these articles for the help you need:

Exercise/Technique Session Number Forty: July 14, 2005 Standard Notation -- so simple even musicians can read it!

Exercise/Technique Session Number Forty Four: August 11, 2005 Back to Basics PART ONE -- teaching the new student to read above the fifth fret.

Exercise/Technique Session Forty Five: August 18, 2005 Back to Basics PART TWO -- teaching the new student to read above the fifth fret.

Exercise/Technique Session Forty Six: August 25, 2005 Back to Basics PART THREE -- teaching the new student to read above the fifth fret.

Exercise/Technique Session Forty Seven: September 1, 2005 Back to Basics PART FOUR -- teaching the new student to read above the fifth fret.

Exercise/Technique Session Forty Eight: September 8, 2005 Back to Basics PART FIVE -- teaching the new student to read above the fifth fret.

Exercise/Technique Session Forty Nine: September 15, 2005 Back to Basics PART SIX (The last in this series, but not on this topic! Teaches the new student to read above the fifth fret.  Next week a new topic.  YEAH!

Misquamicut Beach Rhode Island -- a quiet little hideaway by the Sea!

BIG FOOT SPOTTED IN RHODE ISLAND!!!

See photographic evidence.

Pellegrin writes the tale of Gary Bruno's 900cc Thruxton Triumph--READ IT HERE! www.motosavvy.com

Photo and banner courtesy of www.motosavvy.com copyright 2005

 

THE SECOND ALBUM.... Harry Pellegrin's Reflecting Pools is an ethereal journey into the realm of relaxation. In That Zone is a more classically structured exploration of mood and personality. From the baroque flavor of A Little Song for Amanda to the Bartok-tinged Dream of the Night Dance , a wide range of styles and instrumentation transport the listener...

 

What you'll find on this page -- links to Harry Pellegrin's pages on classical and electric guitar technique, rock bands of the past, AIR RAID included. Rory Gallagher, master of the blues, one of Ireland's favorite sons. Harry has a small tribute here as he was a great fan of crime novels and his brother Donal graced the book LOW END with a wonderful foreword. There is a tribute to Harry Pellegrin's mentor Albert Valdes-Blain and his teacher and mentor Andres Segovia. What does that make Harry? Second generation Segovia?

"You'll see pages on Fender's wonderful and innovative guitars. But you'll also find information on my novels and music. Look, I hate to be self-promoting, but I think you'll find my stuff to be worthy of your attention. Please check it all out." -- Harry Pellegrin

No Excuses required for Leftover Turkey Recipe!

 

AND BY POPULAR DEMAND -- HARRY'S FAMOUS CHILI RECIPE and JUST ADDED -- the cornbread to go with it!

NEW! The History of the Classic Guitar from Lute to the 21st Century (New article on Vicente Arias has been added)

AND

Some Arcane Tips for the Guitarist who wants to Play the Lute

 

Harry Pellegrin's Much-Visited Guitar Page Feature!

 

Covering a variety of topics and regularly updated, this feature is designed to help musicians of all levels achieve a higher level of professionalism.




It's all here!

Stupid Deal Of The Day  

 

Harry Pellegrin's choice for a gigging classical guitar: The Kenny Hill Munich -- an affordable recital-quality instrument. Hey, it's a very nice guitar for any amount of money! More...

The Beautiful Bronx

The Bronx was the place to live in the thirties, forties and most of the fifties. It suffered from its own success. Hey, Harry Pellegrin grew up there. Everyone wanted to live in the urban paradise and the strain on the infrastructure proved too great. Changing social values may have contributed to the downfall of the Bronx as I knew it during the sixties and seventies. People who had lived all their lives in the Bronx decided that the place was too crowded or too 'working class' and moved to Westchester or across the river to Nyack, Nanuet, New City and points north. Many people blame the decline of the Bronx in the eighties to one ethnic group or another. I don't believe this is an accurate assessment. It was the vacuum of people that drew in an economically poorer stratum of society. Landlords panicked and formerly well-rooted families pulled up their stakes and fled. The City's financial crises of the seventies left little solvency to either maintain or expand development or even merely patch up the roads. More...

Rory Gallagher, Legendary Blues Guitarist

In those days, progressive rock was popular. Guitarists had large stacks of amps, tons of outboard gear and numerous instruments on stage. Who could afford all this hardware to make music? Why was it necessary? This frustrated Harry to the point that he had decided to stop playing guitar and concentrate on the bass. Then he heard Rory. There on stage was one man with a battered Stratocaster and one small combo amp. With this limited arsenal, Rory Gallagher made more honest, meticulously crafted music than anyone Harry had seen before. Not only did Harry decide to stick with the guitar, he found the genre known as the Blues and began a love affair with the Stratocaster that continues to this day.

Rory Gallagher toured almost continuously until shortly before his death on June 14, 1995. In Europe, the anniversary of his passing is commemorated with tribute festivals and other events. Rory has never found the recognition he deserved in the United States. His popularity in Europe was huge—and it continues to grow! Loyal American fans are continuously spreading the good word as well, we will see Rory get the fame he so justly deserved! More...

Fender Guitars, the Telecaster and the Stratocaster -- How they're built , How they play!

Untermyer Park , Yonkers New York

Located in North-west Yonkers, is a beautiful site, full of interesting architecture and expansive flower beds.

It was once the site of a private estate owned by the Untermyer family. The original mansion has become part of St. John's Riverside Hospital. The grounds of the mansion are now included in the park. The park affords a spectacular view of the Jersey Palisades.

Popular local legend has it that various sites on the property were used in occult rituals. Regardless, the locale is quite spooky on a moonlit night. The park closes at dusk, so you'll have to take my word for that! As teenagers, we'd often drive up from the Bronx to hang out, play hide and seek and do other things that teenagers do when relieved of parental observation. More...

 

Woodlawn Cemetery , Bronx New York NOW WITH MORE PICTURES!!! (7/7/05)

About fifty yards from the Pellegrin grave , lies the earthly remains of one of American music's brightest lights-- WC Handy , the father of the blues. His stone is basically a grave marker, carved with a musical staff, a trumpet and a simple name and dates. As I took a photo of this great man's grave, something shiny caught my eye in the grass. If you look at the photo, you will see a horn mouthpiece. This was the shiny thing I saw. I do not know whether it was a remembrance from a fellow musician, or a token placed by a grieving loved-one. More...

 

Big Hill Shelter , Harriman State Park

 

Famed Performer and Instructor of the Classical Guitar -- Albert Valdés-Blain

I met Albert Blain in 1974. I had heard of him by reputation, of course. The guitar teacher who had brought me along to that point at which I was ready to undertake a study of the classical guitar at the college level, well, he had admonished me when he'd heard with whom I would be studying. With much the same advise as Mary had given the servants at the marriage feast at Cana, he'd told me "Whatever he tells you to do, just do it!"

Born in Havana Cuba in 1921, Albert Blain was still a New Yorker--he'd lived in the City since 1923, the year his parents brought him and brother Roland to the United States. His father had chosen the guitar for Albert and Roland. The two would become a duo performance act, recording extensively in the 1940's and 1950's.

Albert Blain studied with Andrés Segovia, the performer and educator who is truly the father of the Classical Guitar revival of the 20th century. After retiring from the world's concert stage, Blain opened a guitar studio on 13th Street in Manhattan. More...

plus

a tribute to Andrés Segovia

Andrés Segovia (1893-1987) is the father of the twentieth century's classical guitar renaissance. Indeed, his efforts can to still be felt in the seventeen years (as of this writing) since his death. Without his untiring work to promote the instrument through his ambassadorship of the guitar, it would still be considered a folk instrument.

Segovia's career got its start when his uncle introduced the four year old Andres to the guitar through folk songs sung to a strummed ‘air guitar.' The boy showed a deep interest and was transported forthwith to the local luthier. Young Segovia's family attempted to dissuade him from throwing his life away on a humble instrument. They told him ‘it wasn't respectable.' This hardened his resolve to both master the instrument on his part as well as to legitimize it to the music world and the world at large.  He dreamed of a day when the guitar would share the concert and recital stage on an equal footing with the piano and the violin. This vision drove him on. His plan was threefold—to present the guitar to the concert-going public as a serious virtuoso's instrument, to establish a pedagogical system for the instruction of the instrument on the university level and to build a repertoire for the classical guitar through his own careful and stylish transcriptions of Bach, Scarlatti and others as well as to persuade prominent modern composers to craft new music for the instrument. This was his lifelong path. He followed it through to the end; no one can argue that he didn't succeed far above and beyond. More...

 

AIR RAID Bar Band of the 1980's

Bronx Bar Band Telepathe Reunites under the guise of AIR RAID

Harry Pellegrin and John Podesta try to reassemble AIR RAID, one of Harry's old bands...

Way back in 1975, there was a band in the North Bronx. Yeah, there were quite a few bands in that part of the world, come to think of it, but this one was a curious blend of former Mount and former Cardinal Spellman students. (With a smattering of Fordham University folk.) The lion shall lay down with the lamb... Music can solve the world's problems.

Read more about their thirtieth reunion -- More...

 

AIR RAID was formed by Martin Seddon in the early Fall of 1980. Martin, aka Captain Marty, was born in England and moved to the USA (well, if you call Mt. Vernon, NY the USA.) when he was fourteen years of age. Naw, Mount Vernon is a nice little city that was home to the Left Bank, a great new wave/rock club in the late seventies and early eighties. Anyway, Marty is a graduate of Parsons School of Design, and being a graphic artist and fronting a rock and roll band are the only two things that have ever meant anything to him. Harry met Marty through the bulletin board at PragmaTech Sound. More...

The Discords , Five Part Bronx Harmonies of the 1960's

Some of Harry Pellegrin's past articles including:

The Hitler Youth in Ohio

Speedy Atkins

Daytona Bike Week 1993


MOUNT SAINT MICHAEL ACADEMY in the Bronx

In 1968 I had begun attending Mount Saint Michael Academy, also known by its students as “The Concentration Camp on the Hill.” This was an all-boy's junior and senior high school well known for its sports programs. The Mount was also considered academically superior to the many of parochial schools and definitely on a higher level of excellence than the public high schools in the area. My parents had always been lenient with me when it came to self-expression. If I wanted to wear green bell bottoms and grow my hair long -- even if they didn't approve of the style – they would allow me to go that route and even defend my right to be strange! By 1967 my hair was a good bit longer than was socially acceptable and definitely way past the Mount's nothing-on-the-collar code. I soon realized I really couldn't fight this; I could be going to public school after all. My father went to bat for me every time the Dean of Discipline would send a letter home in an attempt to have me dress more conservatively. The Mount had a tie and sport jacket policy. They didn't indicate either sizing or color -- facts I was well known to exploit. Needless to say, I had most of my fellow students -- the jocks -- wanting to beat me up because I was different. To give a glimpse into what six years at the Mount did for me, let me tell you about my response to my ‘recent graduate' survey. When asked ‘What is the most important thing Mount St. Michael's taught you?” I responded “Never trust a man who wears a dress.” More...

Your humble scribe, his books, his music

 

 

Just the Facts...

The Mystery Series written in the hard-boiled cool style of the 1940's masters

Upstate author pens rock 'n' roll mystery
LEE GOODEN , For The Saratogian 08/13/2004
.............................................
Low End

By Harry G. Pellegrin

Published by Bedside Books

332 pages $22 Trade paperback

'Low End' is a mystery that Harry Pellegrin's protagonist Gary Morrissey solves between 1988 and 1989. It is similar to other mystery crime noir characters written in the first person, like Robert B. Parker's Spencer, Raymond Chandler's Philip Marlowe and Lawrence Block's Mathew Scudder.

Pellegrin sets the story in the late '80s New York City rock 'n'roll scene with believability. His knowledge of blues and rock is undisputed. He mentions the late great guitarist Rory Gallagher, who was not only one of the world's greatest guitarists, but also a fan of detective and crime fiction.

The novel begins with a cleverly paced prologue describing the murder of Morrissey's friend and former bass player and band mate Devon. As a present day Morrissey reminisces about Devon, Pellegrin sends the reader back to 1988.

In 1988 Morrissey is a rock 'n' roll blues guitarist and a recent divorcee who lives in a hot sticky apartment in the South [Yonkers]. His day job consists of repairing copy machines.

He drives a [Fiat 124S Spider] and seems relatively happy going day to day from beer to beer, paycheck to paycheck and gig to gig until a friend and band mate named Captain Marty, from their defunct band Air Raid, informs Morrissey that their mutual friend and bassist Devon has died and was possibly murdered.

Captain Marty asks Morrissey to investigate because he thinks Morrissey would be good at getting the answers.

Morrissey follows clues and discovers that everything is not what it seems. He is led to a gripping cat-and-mouse ending with a remorseless killer.

'Low End' is crafted like a song. It is a crime novel narrated in the first person with the typical wise cracks and testosterone-fueled bravado, and a mystery that one can sink their teeth into. But it is also a spiritual journey.

There are many writers who try too hard to emulate the masters, like Hammett, Chandler, MacDonald, Spillane and McBain. So cumbersome are their efforts, that they lose their own voices. But Pellegrin's protagonist has a voice of the street and a hardened cynical edge, softened with a good heart.

But readers will trust Morrissey only so far, because we know that with enough rope he will hang himself. Morrissey is like a mouth sore that we just can't help but touch. We know it's going to hurt but we don't care. Pellegrin, like God, sits in the back seat while his creation takes over.

I look forward to the further adventures of Morrissey and anything else Harry G. Pellegrin writes. He has written for periodicals like Soundboard: The Journal of the Guitar Foundation of America, The Horse: Backstreet Choppers. He lives with his wife and two daughters in rural upstate New York.
©The Saratogian 2004

 

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The Guitar School - Iceland

The Musician's Mystery Series --

Can one burned-out guitar player save his 'loser' friends, let alone himself?

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What's New? The New Album!

Hey, the new album is out! That's right, finally a follow-up to the reissue of my old album from the late 1980's.

Reflecting Pools is a departure for me as it is totally keyboard. Well, the guitar did show up on one track...

Click the image to the left to learn more, hear a few tracks --even get ordering info if you want it!

 

"...Reflecting Pools is a notable first album [for Mr. Pellegrin]. A dramatic sense of tonality and mood are propelled by exemplary musicianship and exciting compositional exploits."

Available through www.BATHTUBMUSIC.com...

...And containing nine tracks that are relaxing, inspirational -- sounds like a snooze. Not really, this is great stuff to listen to on a rainy afternoon, while with your significant other (nudge, nudge, know what I mean?) Please visit the Reflecting Pools page on this site or www.bathtubmusic.comIn That Zone, is now out! Please visit www.bathtubmusic.com for details and to order.

 

LOW END What's new with the book that came out over a year ago? After being on back-order at Amazon.com for what seemed like a century, it is my understanding that copies are once again shipping. Barnes and Noble's website is on-again-off-again, but PAB (on Amazon as an authorized vendor) has LOW END in stock and it comes with a CD!

DEEP END, the exciting sequel, is being shopped by my literary agent even as we speak.

The Guitar Sessions: Weekly tech tips and exercises to help the guitarist improve. This feature has really taken off. Each week a new page is posted with either an exercise to get the left and right hands moving more efficiently and effectively or an interesting piece from the standard repertoire , demonstrating a necessary technical ability. Judging by the hits these pages receive, you guitar players love this feature!

The page is updated every Thursday. Visit the 2004 Archive as well!

 

My Mission, My Policy

In my opinion, the murder mystery genre reached its zenith in the 1930's and 1940's. The novels penned in those decades were taut, no-nonsense stories of people in life and death crises, people who did not flinch when confronted with overwhelming odds or overwhelming emotion. Some of these tales could be hard-edged and hard-boiled, but the heroes invariably had a soft side as well.

I believe that over the years, in an attempt to mimic real life, the writers of murder mysteries--and most other literature, for that matter--have lowered the standards of excellence set by such authors as the gritty Raymond Chandler and the sophisticated Dorothy Sayers. Many authors misinterpret smut for romance and brutality for strength.

My novels aspire to the standards set by the 1940's mystery writers. My tales are as real and grimy as the mean streets that spawned them. Even so, and though they deal with modern issues, you will not find gratuitous sex in my characters' relationships. Sex may be alluded to, but it is never allowed out from behind closed doors. You will find that my books are entertaining to a broad audience--I have had positive comments from teens to grandmothers. One reader was surprised when I told him that there were no obscenities in the book he'd just finished. He hadn't missed them! A good story doesn't need such unnecessary 'embellishment.'

I have conducted book signings at churches, country clubs, libraries and even a street corner (don't ask!) and I've never been called to task for, or ashamed of, my work. Pick up a copy of my latest novel and see if it isn't a good read!

Harry Pellegrin

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About My Site:

This site is a way for me to commemorate and celebrate a life and lifestyle that is now extinct. Why extinct? Is it that Thomas Wolfe " You-can't-go-home-again " thing? Is it because life is so much different now that what we experienced in the Bronx in the 60's and 70's is no longer relevant? Yes. No. Yes and no? Definitely maybe ! Why do I always start these little essays with questions?

At first, the main thrust of this site was to promote my book. It is a worthy goal; the book tells a good tale and everyone who has read it finds it entertaining and thought-provoking. With that sole goal, I went live with this site back in August of 2003. What happened next is what makes this site truly valuable.

There are people I grew up with, attended school and with whom I played in bands -- neighbors, friends, good family -- who I hadn't seen since I moved from the Bronx in 1986. Divorce had forced me into exile, time and distance conspired to seemingly turn this into a life sentence. Thank the muses for the internet! This site wasn't live for more than two months before I was reunited with Paul Silvestro , a childhood friend whom I hadn't seen in seventeen years. His brother Larry , the guy who had turned me on to playing guitar and taught me the things about music that matter the most, now with him I had no contact since 1983. Twenty years! Too long. I felt as if a part of my soul had been restored -- a part that had been missing for ages and had long ago been written off. But more was to come.

Anthony Pernice, Art Clement , Mike Moretti -- all reunited to me.

The 1960's weren't good to a number of us -- many of us had our personal demons to exorcise, be it substance abuse or the insidious hedonism of the times. but through it all, we were instilled with a vibe, cast in an artistic mold--call it what you will--but unless these same environmental stimuli are exactly reproduced, there will never be another crop of people quite the same.

This page delves into what we experienced and how we incorporated these experiences into art, music, literature and life . I've paid tribute to my neighborhood, the Wakefield section of the Bronx. The Discords -- Larry Silvestro and Artie Clemente's first band in the early mid-sixties-- they're here with their matching outfits, Fender, Hagstrom and Gretsch guitars plus those impeccably precise five part harmonies.

And speaking of the Bronx, I can't talk about Wakefield without mentioning Mount Saint Michael Academy on Murdock Avenue. The Mount was my Junior and High School and although I was not a happy camper while there, I made a few really good friends and consider the education received to be a fine one.

Of course, there is an homage to Leo Fender and his magnificent designs, the Telecaster © and the Stratocaster ©. I officially declare C.L. Fender an honorary Bronxite. These instruments have literally changed my life and the way we all hear music. Check out this page on my site.

Rory Gallagher, whom I saw play in 1973 and who has influenced me ever since--he has a page here as well. He has gone on now, but the impact he made is still rippling outwards, changing how we interpret the blues.

Untermyer Park in Yonkers and Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx are included on this site. We were kids interested in a good ghost story and both these places were terrific for providing a few innocent and fun goose bumps.

...and of course, my book!

Please enjoy this site. Nose around. Anyone can find something here to read and get a chuckle.

Thanks!

   
This site is a member of WebRing.
To browse visit Here.

©2005-2007 Pound Sterling Graphics

 

 

 

 

 

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Harry Pellegrin Website

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Harry George Pellegrin
 

Ted, The picture

MY FAMOUS CHILI RECIPE!!

MISQUAMICUT BEACH, RHODE ISLAND

For the Mystery Lover

 

LOW END -- my first published novel

DEEP END--The Wreck of the Eddie Fitz (The exciting sequel to LOW END)

The Reader's Digest Overview of the Series

RELAXATION MUSIC

The Spa Anthology -- collection for professional use

Reflecting Pools -- My CD of keyboard tone poems

In That Zone -- My Second Keyboard Album!

For the Classical Guitarist

The History of the Classical Guitar

Private Lessons

Albert Valdes-Blain

Andres Segovia

Left Hand Accuracy

My Other CD's

The Kenny Hill Munich

Transcriptions

El Noi De La Mare arranged in the style of Llobet

Hear It!

Nacht Tanz original composition by H. Pellegrin

Hear It!

El Testament D'Amelia arranged in the style of Llobet

Strength, Dexterity, Stamina & technique sessions

YEAR 2004 ARCHIVE

YEAR 2005 ARCHIVE

YEAR 2006 ARCHIVE
 

YEAR 2007 ARCHIVE

 

YEAR 2008 ARCHIVE

YEAR 2009 ARCHIVE

NEW FOR 2010

The Rule of Quarters: How we practice efficiently!  Week Number 151 January 7, 2010

Guitar Technique Session Number One Hundred Fifty July 23, 2009  What's this thing called, love?

Guitar Technique Session Number One Hundred Forty Nine July 16, 2009 AM I getting old?  Sixty Four?   A rapid Beatles arrangement by necessity!

Guitar Technique Session Number One Hundred Forty Eight July 2, 2009 Depressing, isn't it?

Guitar Technique Session Number One Hundred Forty Six June 2, 2009 Learning a New Piece Part Two.

Guitar Technique Session Number One Hundred Forty Five May 26 2009 Learning a New Piece

Guitar Technique Session Number One Hundred Forty Four May 5, 2009 Fix that Attitude!

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Forty Two August 14, 2008  Leyenda Part Three

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Forty  One August 7, 2008  Leyenda Part Two

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Forty  August 1, 2008  Leyenda Part One

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Thirty-nine  July 24, 2008 Yeah, okay, it's an advertisement, but it will definitely interest you!

Part Three of  The Guitar: From Bowstring to the 21st Century  This is a large file, don't attempt with dial-up! February 29, 2008

Part Two of  The Guitar: From Bowstring to the 21st Century  This is a large file, don't attempt with dial-up! February 15, 2008

Part One of  The Guitar: From Bowstring to the 21st Century  This is a large file, don't attempt with dial-up! January 31, 2008

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Thirty-seven  January 3, 2008  Some really early music...

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Thirty-six  December 31, 2007 The cure for Leyenda Syndrome

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Thirty-five December 25, 2007 Dominant  Chords Part THREE

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Thirty-four December 18, 2007 Dominant  Chords Part TWO

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Thirty-three December 11, 2007 Dominant  Chords Part ONE

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Thirty-two December 6, 2007 Major Chords Part FOUR

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Thirty-one November 31, 2007 Major Chords Part THREE

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Thirty November 24, 2007 Major Chords Part TWO

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Twenty nine November 17, 2007 Major Chords Part ONE

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Twenty eight November 10, 2007  Rudimentary Harmony Part TWO

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Twenty: seven November 3, 2007  Rudimentary Harmony Part ONE

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Twenty: six October 27, 2007  It's the pizz, man

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Twenty: five  October 18, 2007 Don't act like a dink on stage!

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Twenty: four October 11, 2007 Is the fingering in your edition right for you?

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Twenty: four October 4, 2007 Basic Theory 101: Intervals are the Building Blocks of Harmony

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Twenty: three September 27, 2007 Basic Theory 101: Intervals are the Building Blocks of Harmony

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Twenty: two September 20, 2007 Choice of String makes for different sounds...

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Twenty-One: May 17, 2007 Giuliani Practices What He Preaches

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Twenty: May 10, 2007 The Importance of Scales

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Nineteen: May 3, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 30)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Eighteen: April 25, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 29)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Seventeen: April 19, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 28)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Sixteen: April 12, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 27)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Fifteen: April 5, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 26)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Fourteen: March 29, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 25)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Thirteen: March 22, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 24)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Twelve: March 12, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 23)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Eleven: March 5, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 22)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Ten: February 26, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 21)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Nine: February 21, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 20)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Eight: February 14, 2007 A Little Waltz

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Seven: February 8, 2007 Stretches

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred six: January 31, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 19)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Five: January 25, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 18)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Four: January 18, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 17)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Three: January 11, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 16)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred Two: January 4, 2007 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 15)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred One : December 28, 2006 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 14)

Guitar Technique Session One Hundred: December 21, 2006 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 13)

Guitar Technique Session Ninety Nine: December 14, 2006 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 12)

Guitar Technique Session Ninety Eight: December 7, 2006 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 11)

Guitar Technique Session Ninety Seven: November 30, 2006 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 10)

Guitar Technique Session Ninety Six: November 23, 2006 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 9)

Guitar Technique Session Ninety Five: November 16, 2006 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 8)

Guitar Technique Session Ninety Four: November 9, 2006 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 7)

Guitar Technique Session Ninety Three: November 2, 2006 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 6)

Guitar Technique Session Ninety Two : October 26, 2006 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 5)

Guitar Technique Session Ninety One: October 19 , 2006 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 4)

Guitar Technique Session Ninety : October 11 , 2006 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 3)

Guitar Technique Session Eighty Nine: October 5 , 2006 Continuing the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 2)

Guitar Technique Session Eighty Eight: September 28 , 2006 The beginning of the Complete Pascual Roch Volume 2 (part 1)

Guitar Technique Session Eighty Seven: September 13 , 2006 Villa-Lobos Prelude One and 1950's interpretation.

Guitar Technique Session Eighty Six: September 6 , 2006 Villa-Lobos Prelude Two repeats the left hand fingerings quite a bit. It's a good thing!

Guitar Technique Session Eighty Five: August 30, 2006 Another look at artificial harmonics through the haze of time.

Guitar Technique Session Eighty Four: August 23, 2006 Hey man, it ain't written that way! When to play something differently.

Guitar Technique Session Eighty Three: August 16, 2006 The Plateau, and how to get the heck off of it!

Guitar Technique Session Eighty Two: August 9, 2006 A piano transcription on a long boring plane ride.

Guitar Technique Session Eighty One: August 2, 2006 Right and Left hands both get a work-out in this Albéniz classic. PART THREE

Guitar Technique Session Eighty: July 28, 2006 Right and Left hands both get a work-out in this Albéniz classic. PART TWO

Guitar Technique Session Seventy Nine: July 21 , 2006 Right and Left hands both get a work-out in this Albéniz classic.

Guitar Technique Session Seventy Eight: July 13 , 2006 Weird and Funky Reverses

Guitar Technique Session Seventy Seven: July 7 , 2006 Pascual Roch and harmonics: a must-read!

Guitar Technique Session Seventy Six: June 29, 2006 It's all too trilling !

Guitar Technique Session Seventy Five: June 22, 2006 Oops I klinkered Again!

Guitar Technique Session Seventy Four: June 16, 2006 Artificial Harmonics and Amelia

Guitar Technique Session Seventy Three: June 8, 2006 Technique and Musicality: Which is More Important???

 

Guitar Technique Session Seventy Two May 2, 2006 The Classic Guitar Method has Arrived!

Guitar Technique Session Sixty Nine March 9, 2006   Carulli and a few new Kama Sutra positions, well actually one new position on the guitar.  That sounds just plain wrong!  Oh, click the link and see what the flap is all about! PART THREE

Guitar Technique Session Seventy  March 16, 2006   Carulli and a few new Kama Sutra positions, well actually one new position on the guitar.  That sounds just plain wrong!  Oh, click the link and see what the flap is all about!  PART FOUR

Guitar Technique Session Seventy One  March 23, 2006   Why Transcribe?  We look at a Bach Cello Suite. (First in a series.)

 

Guitar Technique Session Sixty Eight March 2, 2006   Carulli and a few new Kama Sutra positions, well actually one new position on the guitar.  That sounds just plain wrong!  Oh, click the link and see what the flap is all about!  PART TWO.

Guitar Technique Session Sixty Nine March 9, 2006   Carulli PART THREE

Guitar Technique Session Seventy  March 16, 2006   Carulli PART FOUR

Guitar Technique Session Seventy One  March 23, 2006   Why Transcribe?  We look at a Bach Cello Suite. (First in a series.)

Guitar Technique Session Sixty Seven February 26, 2006   Carulli and a few new Karma Sutra positions, well actually one new position on the guitar.  That sounds just plain wrong!  Oh, click the link and see what the flap is all about!

Guitar Technique Session Sixty Six February 17. 2006   Giuliani is great but a bit harmonically challenged!  what is this HERESY?  Tune in and check it out.

Guitar Technique Session Sixty Two January 5, 2006 How do you get the new student to cleanly, accurately and quickly transition from one chord to another?

 

Guitar Technique Session Sixty Three January 17, 2006 Getting the new student to use Apoyando and Free Stroke in the same phrase to articulate a melody, A simple Etude by yours truly.

Guitar Technique Session Sixty Four January 27, 2006 Sor's Etude Number One can still teach a few things after a century and a half or so...

Guitar Technique Session Sixty Five February 9. 2006   Guitar taught right.  Figures Carulli would take the point! My man!

______________

Exercise Week One: September 23, 2004 Warm Up and Work Out

Exercise Week Two: September 30, 2004 Legato (Slurs)

Exercise Week Three: October 7, 2004 The Barré in Melody Passages

Exercise Week Four: October 14, 2004 A Trip to Nosebleed Country

Exercise Week Five: October 20, 2004 Sor and the Interval of the Third

Exercise Week Six: October 28, 2004 Scale Passages in Bach's Chaconne

Exercise Week Seven: November 4, 2004 Right-hand finesse in Villa-Lobos

Exercise Week Eight: November 11, 2004 Working in Fourths

Exercise Week Nine: November 18, 2004 Apoyando

Exercise Week Ten: November 25, 2004 Rock and Rollers! Open string speed riffing

Exercise Week Eleven: December 2, 2004 Giuliani variation demands right hand intricacy

Exercise Week Twelve: December 11, 2004 Tremolo Study Number 1

Exercise Week Thirteen: December 18, 2004 Tremolo No. 2 Recuerdos

Exercise Week Fourteen: December 23, 2004 Guardame Las Vacas

The Main Exercise Page

Exercise Week Fifteen: December 30, 2004 Tremolo No. 3 Una Limosna

Exercise Week Sixteen: January 6, 2005 Special Effects

Exercise Week Seventeen: January 13, 2005 Blues/Rock Soloing--The Box

Exercise Week Eighteen: January 20, 2005 Blues/Rock Soloing Part Two--Bending the Box

Exercise Week Nineteen: January 27, 2005 Blues/Rock Soloing Part Three--Vibrato

Exercise Week Twenty: February 3, 2005 Blues/Rock Soloing Part Four -- Majorly Outside the Box

Exercise Week Twenty One: February 10, 2005 Tendonitis and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. AVOID IT!

Exercise Week Twenty Two: February 17, 2005 Getting Sor with an Etude... Apoyando PART TWO

Exercise Week Twenty Three: February 24, 2005 Sight Reading 101 with a Giuliani Rossiniane (Opus 119, No. 1)

Exercise Week Twenty Four: March 3, 2005 Bend and stretch, doing two things at once and finger independence

Exercise Week Twenty Five: March 10, 2005 Apoyando Part Three -- using Carcassi Opus 60 No. 16 to get that ring finger resting...

Exercise Week Twenty Six: March 17, 2005 Get those fingers where they ought to be! Proper Left Hand Positioning

Exercise Week Twenty Seven: March 24, 2005 Drop D tuning a classical guitarist's perspective on a common practice.

Exercise Week Twenty-Eight March 31, 2005 Right hand Technique --tone production on the Electric Guitar

Exercise Week Twenty Nine: April 7, 2005 Right hand Technique -- tone production on the Classical Guitar

Exercise Week Thirty: April 14, 2005 Sight Reading 101 Part Two -- Back to a more Basic Approach

Exercise Week Thirty-One: April 21, 2005 Sight Reading 101 Part Three -- Let's Read all over the Freakin' Neck, man

Exercise Week Thirty-Two: April 28, 2005 Sight Reading 101 Part Four -- We got the flashlight and the Lizard Poison!

Exercise Week Thirty-Three: May 19, 2005 Sight Reading 101 Part Five -- The shape of things to come and tone ranges

Exercise Week Thirty-Three: May 25, 2005 An old Carulli Prelude gets that Butt-Ugly Thumb moving like a champ!

Exercise Week Thirty-Four: June 2, 2005 Jon Voight taught me not to be late. But until that time when I really learn the lesson, here is a neat Carulli Andante for you to finger.

Exercise Week Thirty-Five: June 9, 2005 Practice Versus Playing The Bout of the Century -- but who will win? He who practices, not just plays...

Exercise Week Thirty-Six: June 16, 2005 The Stretcher You want to get used to this here rather than at a gig. Actually an easy exercise that builds a skill.

Exercise Week Thirty-Seven: June 23, 2005 Lute Tabulature You'll need to know how the various methods work to cop some good early music. Viel Ton, the tab of Dowland. THIS IS PART ONE

Exercise Week Thirty-Eight: June 30, 2005 Lute Tabulature Spanish, Italian and French. The cuisine is great, but the tabulature is good too! THIS IS PART TWO

Exercise Week Thirty-Nine: July 7, 2005 Lute Tabulature German Tablature -- this is the tough one to interpret (at first.) THIS IS PART THREE

Exercise/Technique Session Number Forty: July 14, 2005 Standard Notation -- so simple even musicians can read it!

Guitar Exercise or Technique Session Forty One: July 21, 2005 Planting and Hold That Note! Making your fingers work a little keeps them from working a lot!

Guitar Exercise or Technique Session Forty Two: July 28, 2005 Planting and Hold That Note! Making your fingers work a little keeps them from working a lot!

Guitar Exercise or Technique Session Forty Three: August 4, 2005 Rasgueado (Ooo, pardon me!) Yes, it's a sound, but not that one!

Guitar Exercise or Technique Session Forty Four: August 11, 2005 Back to Basics PART ONE -- teaching the new student to read above the fifth fret.

Guitar Exercise or Technique Session Forty Five: August 18, 2005 Back to Basics PART TWO -- teaching the new student to read above the fifth fret.

Guitar Exercise or Technique Session Forty Six: August 25, 2005 Back to Basics PART THREE -- teaching the new student to read above the fifth fret.

Guitar Exercise or Technique Session Forty Seven: September 1, 2005 Back to Basics PART FOUR -- teaching the new student to read above the fifth fret.

Guitar Exercise or Technique Session Forty Eight: September 8, 2005 Back to Basics PART FIVE -- teaching the new student to read above the fifth fret.

Guitar Exercise or Technique Session Forty Nine: September 15, 2005 Back to Basics PART SIX -- teaching the new student to read above the fifth fret.  This is the last part of the series.  Next week, something new!

Guitar Exercise or Technique Session Fifty: September 23, 2005 Rigging Your Pedals - Sounding like a garage band? Try rearranging the furniture!

Guitar Technique Session Fifty One: October 13, 2005 Be a tone meister with a crap amplifier!

Guitar Exercise or Technique Session Number Fifty Two: October 10, 2005 Raiding Hollywood's soundtrack to find great tunes for transcription -- The Harry Lime Theme

Guitar Exercise or Technique Session Number Fifty - Three: October 27, 2005 Another trip to an unlikely place for some recital repertoire PART TWO

Guitar Exercise or Technique Session Number Fifty Four: November 3, 2005 More repertoire from the 'lite' classic arena

Guitar Exercises Session Number Fifty Five: November 10, 2005. Mauro Giuliani shows us his stuff!

Guitar Exercises Session Number Fifty SIX: November 17, 2005. Napoleon Coste gives a glimpse of 19th Century life.

Guitar Technique Session Fifty Seven December 1, 2005 FIRST OF THREE PARTS Drop D Tuning and the Marlbrough Variations

Guitar Technique Session Fifty Eight December 8, 2005 SECOND OF THREE PARTS Drop D Tuning and the Marlbrough Variations

Guitar Technique Session Fifty Nine December 15, 2005 THIRD OF THREE PARTS Drop D Tuning and the Marlbrough Variations

Guitar Technique Session Sixty December 22, 2005 Queen Elizabeth's Galliard by John Dowland. F# tuning??? Checkout what's going on here. A great little piece

Guitar Technique Session Sixty One December 29, 2005 MERRY CHRISTMAS!! A nice little -- and simple transcription/rendition of Greensleeves. ENJOY!

 

Guitar Technique Session Sixty Two January 5, 2006 How do you get the new student to cleanly, accurately and quickly transition fromone chord to another?

 

Guitar Technique Session Sixty Three January 17, 2006 Getting the new student to use Apoyando and Free Stroke in the same phrase to articulate a melody, A simple Etude by yours truly.

Guitar Technique Session Sixty Four January 27, 2006 Sor's Etude Number One can still teach a few things after a century and a half or so...

Guitar Technique Session Sixty Five February 9. 2006   Guitar taught right.  Figures Carulli would take the point! My man!

 

For the Rock N' Roller

The Fender Guitar (Stratocasters mostly!)

Fender Construction Technique

AIR RAID -- Bronx Bar Band of the Early 1980's

The Discords -- Five-part harmony on Ely Avenue in the 1960's

Rory Gallagher -- Irish-born master of the Blues.

Funny Old Photos -- Harry Pellegrin in various incarnations...

Ensemble Performance

PART ONE: The Technique of Ensemble Playing: Emotions and Expectations -- the price one pays.

PART TWO: Rehearsal Etiquette -- Are you a squid in the band room?

PART THREE: Blending with the band -- do you fit in or do you take over?

PART FOUR: Numbers and Hand Signals -- It is polite to use your hands for some things

PART FIVE: Behaving at The Gig Professionalism Pays Big Dividends

PART SIX: VOLUME! How loud is too loud? How do you get loud enough and keep from assaulting ears and sensibilities?

PART SEVEN: Gig Realities --Some sage and humorous advice.

PART EIGHT: 'And so, the end is near, it's time to face that final curtain...'  When is it time to quit a band?

Some Interesting Places to Visit

The Beautiful Bronx of the 1960's

Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx -- Where the Elite Meet to Decompose

Untermyer Park in Yonkers -- Home of beautiful statuary and night-time occult practices. Son of Sam chilled here. So did the rest of us little urchins back in the 197o's

Scenes and Sites from LOW END and DEEP END

MORE -- The Scene of the Crime

ARTICLES

INTERVIEW: Jack Kirk Master Builder of Fine Classical Guitars. Conducted in 1983, this interview appeared in edited form in Soundboard Magazine. Here is a transcript of the tape made that day in June. Names are named and myths debunked.

Ever break a fingernail prior to a majorly important recital? Here's a way of patching your hand and your career using stuff you already have in the house. NAILS!

Want to fondly recall life as it was in New York City in 1983? Read this article on guitar in NY .

GUITAR QUEBEC 1983 -- A great conference held by the Guitar Foundation of America. Harry covered the series of master classes held. Read the article he wrote for the Winter 1984 issue of Soundboard.

An old Soundboard article from 1983, this piece discusses college education for guitarists in New York City. READ.

The Wave on a Cool Fall Afternoon A short ghost story

Are You Hard Core? From Plastic Pony Magazine Editorial

Wild Horses From Plastic Pony Magazine , June 1994 Diatribe on music and memory-jogs

On the Road Again From Plastic Pony Magazine , November 1994 Editorial

Excerpt Number One from The Monkey Butt Essays Editorial

Excerpt Number Two from The Monkey Butt Essays Editorial

Excerpt Number Three from The Monkey Butt Essays Editorial

Excerpt Number Four from T he Monkey Butt Essays Editorial

The Wake From Plastic Pony Magazine Maudlin piece on a dead guy and a dead motorcycle

Excerpt Number Five from Plastic Pony Magazine Editorial

Daytona 1993 Recount of a road trip to the sunny climes

It Pays to Advertise Editorial

Bias Anyone? The AMA hates outlaw bikers -- enough to, well, shall we say 'make up stories?'

Adirondack Weekend Another road movie...

Music and Motorcycles Bikes and tunes