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This collection by RG Rhoades represents a fresh, interesting and exciting addition to beginner-level guitar ensemble repertoire. The use of simple rhythms, repetitive fingering patterns, short musical phrases, and a limited note range make the individual parts of each trio playable by the most novice guitarist, and yet have a synergistic effect when played together, resulting in a captivating, unique and contemporary soundscape that offers a pedagogical benefit, too. "Ten Trios for Beginning Guitarists" are certain to provide the instructor, performer, and listener with a rewarding musical experience!
This trio was written as a simple but effective introduction to the whole note rhythm as used to indicate both sound (via the whole notes) and silence (via the whole note rests). The students must learn that a rest is a sign of silence, so be sure that the strings are muted during the rests.
Based on the A major pentatonic scale, this selection is quite unique in that all fingered notes are found at the 2nd fret. This gives the students an opportunity for expanded use of the 2nd finger, and the piece can serve as an introduction to playing in II position, too.
Be certain that students let the notes ring over one another, as this is necessary to achieve the desired sound for this piece. It may be helpful to instruct the students to imagine that the rain is about to stop (at the ritard) but only for a moment (1 measure) as the rain resumes (at the a tempo).
Note the interplay between Gt 1 and Gt 2 as they trade the melody from phrase to phrase.
As the name implies "Stepping Tones" is largely based on step-wise movement between the notes of a single part.However, between Gt 1 and Gt 2 a variety of intervals, including 3rds, 4ths, tri-tones, and 6ths, can be heard. The long and parallel rhythms coupled with the moderate performance tempo should give students sufficient opportunity to hear these intervals.
Gt 3 provides the rhythmic foundation for this trio. The other guitar parts offer rhythmic variation although unison rhythms between the parts can be found. These measures should be especially powerful.
Gt 2 is the highlight of this trio. The melody presented in the beginning is rhythmically delayed or echoed in the B section. This piece offers a great opportunity for you to assess how well the students listen to their parts. See who can guess why this trio is entitled "Echoes of the Past".
This music is reflective and meditative in nature. The rit./a tempo measures add expressiveness to the piece.
The upper two voices (Gt 1 and 2) establish an ostinato that is contrasted by a series of differing notes and rhythms in the bass resulting in a constantly changing sound. Dynamics are especially important in this piece as they are used to create the image of something approaching, getting "Closer and Closer".
Rhythmic interplay between the parts adds interest to this music. The Guitar 3 part demands the most attention to counting. The form has been expanded through the use of a DC.