MP3 Dale Harris - Espiritu De La Guitarra
Classical Spanish & acoustic guitarist, whose performances have spanned the British Isles, Europe and South Africa, including tours, recordings and radio broadcasts as a soloist and with other successful artists.
13 MP3 Songs
CLASSICAL: Traditional, LATIN: General
About Dale Harris:
Dale Harris was born in West London, in 1968. Initially taught by his father, Dale began playing the guitar at the age of four and gave his first solo public performance at age 7.
His formal musical education includes a first class B.A.(Hon) degree, an M.A. in performance, and in 2004, Dale successfully completed a PhD entitled ''Cryptograms In The Music Of Alban Berg'' . In 1998, Dale won ''The Larissa Lovelock Memorial Prize'' – part of a Masters Degree scholarship specializing in classical guitar performance. Dale studied the classical guitar with Jeff Alexander and has had master-classes with John Mills, Richard Durrant, and John Myhill. Dale has also composed and performed on library albums and his music has appeared on radio, television and corporate video.
Dale Harris commenced his semi-professional musical career playing both acoustic and electric guitar under producers Ian Grant (BBC) and Pat Collier (freelance) whilst simultaneously studying the classical guitar. Throughout his career, Dale has entertained audiences with classical and Spanish standards, virtuoso showpieces and he often includes folk, country, jazz, blues and popular music in his concerts. He often includes items written for a specially modified steel-string acoustic guitar by Adrian Legg. It was Ian Grant who introduced Dale to a legend in British country music, the singer Lorne Gibson. Dale was immediately asked to join the Lorne Gibson Trio (in a role formerly occupied by Adrian Legg), and they performed numerous concerts and British Isles tours together. Amongst the specially invited performances that Dale has contributed to have been to the 28th I.C.H.P.E.R. World Congress attended by His Royal Highness Prince Phillip The Duke Of Edinburgh (London, 1985) and the Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey (Canterbury Cathedral, 1998) and once gave a private recital to a Zulu King and Prince whilst visiting the Amaslubi tribe in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa. During 1999, Dale performed a series of concerts featuring late 20th Century classical guitar music featuring the 33 minute epic The Princes Toys Suite by Nikita Koshkin. Many audiences have witnessed Dale Harris’s supreme command of the guitar, his sensitive and unique interpretation, his mastery of extended techniques together with his distinctive flamboyant style. The release of Espiritu de la Guitarra (April 2006) heralded the first solo commercial Spanish guitar release from Dale Harris. The new CD features Spanish and Paraguayan music by Albéniz, Tárrega, Sor, De Murcia and Barrios Mangoré.
When not touring or recording, Dale enjoys cross-country walking, snooker & billiards, chess, F1 Grand Prix racing and keenly supports Brentford Football Club.
About Espiritu De La Guitarra:
Paraguayan, Agustín Barrios Mangoré (1885-1944) is an interesting figure in guitar history. He was an outstanding guitarist and performer and one of the first guitarists to make gramophone records. In addition, he was a gifted improviser and a prolific composer boosting the guitar repertoire by approximately 300 works. Choro de Saudade is a nostalgic work dedicated to the "young people of South America". Dale Harris has interpreted the lyrical theme as becoming ever more intense and nostalgic with each recapitulation. A salient feature of Barrios'' music and technique is the requirement of large left-hand stretches, and many are employed in Choro de Saudade. The Waltz in D major is a humorous and lively piece reminiscent of a Viennese Waltz. The special moments include the numerous flourishes and the very beautiful brilliate campenella passage in the trio section. Una Limosna por el Amor de Dios ("An offering for the Love of God") employs a tremolo melody (a rapid succession of alternating ring-middle-index right-hand fingers) which is test of technique and endurance for the performer.
Paraguayan, Agustín Barrios Mangoré (1885-1944) is an interesting figure in classical guitar history. He was an outstanding guitarist and performer and one of the first guitarists to make gramophone records. In addition, he was a gifted improviser and a prolific composer boosting the guitar repertoire by some 300 works. The Waltz Op.8, No.4 is a humorous and lively piece reminiscent of a Viennese waltz. In my opinion, the special moments include the numerous brilliant flourishes and the very beautiful campenella passage in the trio section. Una Limosna por el Amor de Dios ("An offering for the Love of God") employs a tremolo melody (a rapid succession of alternating ring-middle-index right-hand fingers) which is test of technique and endurance for the performer. Choro de Saudade "A memoria de Americo Piratininga de Camargo" is a nostalgic choro dedicated to the "young people of South America". I have interpreted the lyrical theme as becoming ever more intense and nostalgic with each recapitulation. A salient feature of Barrios''s music and technique is the requirement of large left-hand stretches, and many are employed in Choro de Saudade.
The Two Minuets by Fernando Sor (1778-1839) are extracted from his two Sonatas, Opus 22 and Opus 25. Both Minuets are composed according to typical Classical harmony and form. Although Sor''s La Folia de España Op.15, No.1 is seldom performed, it features four charming variations upon the popular song "The Ladies of Spain". Sor was exiled from his native Spain for much of his life and the present interpretation adds a little extra melancholy to the work. La Romanesca is a simple song showing Sor at his most lyrical.
Asturias (from Suite Española Op.47 No.5) by Issac Albéniz (1860-1909) was originally written for the piano and has become one of the most popular transcriptions for the guitar. Albéniz is best known for his miniatures composed for the piano and his pieces are often highly evocative of Spanish culture. The Principality of Asturias is situated on the north coast of Spain facing the Cantabrian Sea (Mar Cantábrico, the Spanish name for the Bay of Biscay). Asturias is subtitled Leyenda (originally used as the Preludio in three-movement set entitled Chants d'' Espagne, op. 232), and the work has inspired numerous dramatic stories of Hollywood epic proportions such as biblical thunderstorms and devastating earthquakes! Although Albéniz left no clues as to what legend or legends he was referring to, it is likely that he was broadly referring to Andalusian culture, he wrote in 1886 to his friend Enrique Moragas:
“I seek now the tradition...the guzla, the lazy dragging of the fingers over the strings. And above all, a heartbreaking lament out of tune... that which is art, which is all that seems to me beauty and emotion.”
The haunting opening section leads to rapid arpeggios and rasgueado (a strum, using all the right-hand fingers in rapid succession). The slower middle section contains a recurring octave motif in the dominant key, evoking the Spanish Gypsy cante jondo (an improvised song, often recalling bygone persecution). An exploration of the typically Spanish Phrygian mode follows. There follows an exact recapitulation of the opening section (that gains strength from its second airing) followed by a brief choral-like coda.
Santiago de Murcia (circa 17th-18th Century) was a court guitarist who wrote in the popular French and Italian styles of that time. His Prelude and Allegro is an example of the late Baroque guitar, a highly decorative instrument strung with 5 pairs of strings.
Recuerdos de la Alhambra (meaning "Memories of the Alhambra") by Francisco Tárrega (1852-1909) is a beautiful evocation of the Alhambra - with its 13th-century Moorish gardens, elegant palaces and water fountains - found in the hills of Granada, Spain. The tremolo melody brilliantly captures the sensuality of the Alhambra. Tárrega has made a highly significant contribution to the guitar as a teacher (formerly Professor of Guitar at the Madrid Conservatoire) and as the composer of one of the worlds most famous works ever written for the guitar. The two miniatures - ¡Adelita! Mazurka and Lágrima: Preludio - capture the unique lyrical qualities of the guitar.
I am indebted to Graham Waller for invaluable assistance and advice, and for kindly providing recording facilities. Special thanks to George and Sheila Harris. Thanks also to all at Canterbury Christ Church University, especially my former teacher Jeff Alexander, and to John Mills and Lora Dimitrova for their advice on performance technique and interpretation.
Dale Harris, Copyright 2006
Guitar by Manuel Contreras II: 1997 doble-tapa (Rio).
Recorded in Hertfordshire, England.