In order to become not only a good guitarist, but an accomplished musician as well, one of the most important skills is being able to arrange an original melody or even an already existing song. In the first case this would be absolutely necessary for a songwriter who wants to give his own songs, not only a basic melodic structure, but also an interesting and captivating harmonic atmosphere. In the second case it would be extremely useful for any guitarist who wants to create solo guitar arrangements in a fingerstyle style, or simply, if he wants to give an overall different flavor to an already existing song.
To properly understand what we are talking about we should firstly define in an accessible way the concept of arrangements in music. In music arranging is more than a skill, it can be considered a proper form of art, because it can be defined as the ability of giving a melody music interest and variety. This process can be applied to an original melodic composition or to an already existing piece of music as well.
In the second case the final result can differ from the original composition for a new reharmonization, for the use of different instruments in the new orchestration, for a further development of the formal structure and for a possible melodic paraphrasing. A particular type of arrangement is the instrumental one, where not only the whole harmonic structure is completely re-adapted to be played on instruments different from those present in the original version, but even the vocal melody is performed by an instrument as well. Even more particular is the case of solo acoustic guitar arrangements, where all the different harmonic parts of the song are exclusively played on a guitar.
But how is it possible to arrange a whole song played by several different instruments with just a guitar? The answer is given by the fact that the guitar is an incredibly versatile music instrument and gives the guitarist not only the chance to play the melody, but the bass line and the basic chord structure at the same time as well. It practically works as a little orchestra and considering it can play up to six different notes together, the potential is huge. The most interesting part is the fact that the guitar can be used not only to produce notes but, thanks to several different possible percussive techniques, even to produce the rhythm usually played by a drum kit. This feature is virtually absent on the classical guitar technique simply because the concept of a steady beat is virtually not existent in the classical music. In any other genre of modern music instead it is usually essential to create convincing and engaging arrangements.
During the last few years many new percussive guitar techniques have come to life and many young guitarists evolved their playing according to the new fashion. If on one side this is extremely good because it allows to explore new uncharted musical territories, on the other hand an overuse of it can often be the reason of poor arrangements in terms of harmony and bass line complexity. Considering the bass line structure essential for a modern song, both in terms of groove and harmonization, we strongly believe that it should never be sacrified in order to get richer rhythmic patterns. The guitar is not a percussive instrument and the harmonic structure of a song, as long as the melody line, should be the main focus of any good arrangements. With several years of experience in the art of the arrangement, here at the Fingerstyle & Classical Guitar Studio, we can assist you in the development of all the skills necessary to produce all the solo guitar arrangements you desire, both of already existing songs as well as of your original compositions.