Studying flamenco guitar in Sevilla, this style’s heartland, has been a very humbling experience. Many times I have felt like I’ve picked up guitar for the first time, and that is a great, great thing. With so many of us leading incredibly busy lives centered around that which we maintain a relative mastery over, it becomes easy to lose sight of a simple fact: there is always a beautiful lesson waiting to be learned. For me, this week, it is rasgueados and piccados and compas. As a relatively skilled guitarist I have had moments of great frustration, chiding myself, “you should be able to do this.” But as I go to more flamenco shows, the intricacies of this form continue to unfold before my eyes and ears. Returning to a beginner’s mind has refreshed and rejuvenated my motivation to bring new ideas and the necessary determination to return to the states to complete my album and start performing the material live. And here I have reached one of my conclusions: it’s going to take a lot more than a week in Sevilla to wrap my fingers and mind around flamenco!
Until then, check out some footage of my incredibly skilled teacher, Michelle Iacarino.