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How to Play Sevillanas Compas

Learn how to play sevillanas compas in this flamenco guitar lesson video from Howcast.


So we're going to talk about sevillanas. This piece I was just playing right now is a sevillanas. It's a style of flamenco. It's a very popular style, mainly because of its dance. The dance of sevillanas is a very big thing in Spain, especially in the South of Spain. It's a very beautiful dance and it's accompanied by guitar and singing and a lot of clapping.

Sevillanas is a style of flamenco, so that it's not played usually in the Phrygian mode. Meaning if I'm in the key of A Major or A Minor, my next chord is not necessarily going to be that B Flat sound. So sevillanas is a style that's in three meter so it's in 3/4, and it features a two measure cycle. There are many different sections to the song or to the keys, but I'm going to show you how to play the basic compas, and then you can elaborate from there.

This is the intro to sevillanas and the basic compas, so it's in three and the first measure we're going to play in the tonic key. So I'm going to do sevillanas in A Major. First beat we're just going to do and indife down, then I'm going to do two rasgueardos. For beat two and beat three. Here's our first measure. Notice this rasgueardo, the beat falls on the index, leads to our pickup notes. These two are pickup notes using your annular and middle finger.

So we're going to go one, two, three. Okay, on beat three I'm going to bring my index back in to give it a little more groove. So that's going to be our first measure, one, two, three and. For measure two I'm going to move the five chord, which is going to be in E Major or in E 7. And I'm going to do the same thing I did with on my right hand. Thumb down, rasgueardo on beat two, and rasgueardo on beat three.

But notice this is one of the characteristics of sevillanas. On the beat three of the second measure I go back to my tonic chord. So I don't wait for one to rasgueardo; I rasgueardo on beat three. Sounds like this. Yeah, that's one of the main features of sevillanas. Now before the singer comes in or before the dancers start dancing, because this is the part where everybody is preparing, there is a section called a llamada, and that's when we tell everybody when to get ready to start singing or to start dancing.

Because we can be jamming on this compas for a while, but there comes a moment where everybody's ready, so then you play this just a little bit different, so everybody know when to come in. And this is how you do it. You play beat one and beat two, and hold beat two over beat three. So we don't play anything on beat three, so three and then we switch the next measure, and we do the rasgueardo first on beat one, rasgueardo, index down on beat two and we resolve on beat three to the tonic and then we play beat one and beat two, okay?

I'm going to do this again very slow. Three, one, two. After you play that beat two, then the singers start, usually with a long phrase for about two measures, and then you come back in. And the dance begins and everybody is having a great time. Let's see how this sounds. I'm going to play two measures and then the llamada.

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