New video – see previous videos here
New original classical guitar composition: Astoresque (link)
New classical guitar arrangement: Che gelida manina (G. Puccini) (link)
newcenturyguitar.com—who is it for?
“I write this not for the many, but for you; each of us is enough of an audience for the other.” — Epicurus
My name is Tuomas Kourula. I’m a Finnish classical guitar teacher—you can find out more about me here. I compose new classical guitar music for you to listen and play. My style is melodic, emotional, rhythmically alive, accessible and fun. You might call it “cinematic fusion” style. Like movies, I want to tell you a story and move you, and do it in an entertaining way.
This website, NewCenturyGuitar.com, is a resource I’ve created for classical guitar students and teachers. The most important feature here is a collection of my original compositions for classical guitar, sometimes also called nylon string guitar or Spanish guitar. The classical guitar music that is available here on NewCenturyGuitar.com is aimed at diversifying and broadening the repertoire of contemporary music for guitar.
It’s getting harder and harder to motivate guitar students to keep practicing classical guitar. There are so many other things taking up their interest and time. Diverse and interesting repertoire can help out a lot!
My compositions have had an overwhelmingly positive response from my own guitar students. I hope that also you (and your students, if you’re a teacher) will like my music.
Why do we need these new compositions?
Because I’m a classical guitar teacher, I know that there’s never too much or even enough of this kind of contemporary, yet accessible music available for classical guitar.
Classical guitar music seems sometimes to be stuck between the past or the present. I think that the most fruitful approach is to fuse different styles and sounds.
It’s true that the old and familiar studies by Fernando Sor, Ferdinando Carulli, Matteo Carcassi, Mauro Giuliani etc. are great. Many guitarists really love playing them, and Leo Brouwer’s music works especially well with some players. But it’s also true that most guitarists will want to play something like my compositions from time to time, something that reflects both our own time and the classical guitar tradition. That’s why I compose new classical guitar music that combines the many interesting and diverse musical influences of our time, the 21st century.
I’ve been playing classical guitar since I was a child, for over 25 years. The more I gain experience, the more important it becomes to me that the music I write, play and teach to my students should be accessible and fundamentally guitaristic.
It’s a top priority to me that my compositions should sound full and satisfying, but they should never fight you when you play them. The notes must fall easily and naturally under the fingers.
I know that I can never convince you to have a look and listen just by writing about music. So, here are videos that you can view and hear for yourself. There are also many sheet music samples on these pages.
Why do I choose the PDF format for my classical guitar sheet music?
You can download the classical guitar compositions on NewCenturyGuitar.com as sheet music PDF files. The PDF format is the best for sheet music, because PDF files are easy to view, download and print. You can use PDF files on any device, and they just work. Computers, iPads or other tablets, even smartphones, all are compatible.
PDF files are extra handy for educational classical guitar music. There’s no need to buy a whole expensive guitar music book for the one or two pieces in it that you really want to play—you can just pick and choose! You can store the PDF sheet music in your tablet, and you’ll have access to it all the time, wherever you are. Or you can print it out on paper. And if you happen to lose the print, just print out another copy!
Electronic sheet music is a recent development, and we’re just starting to see all the great new possibilities it offers us. At NewCenturyGuitar.com, you and I both can help shape the future of sheet music!
How do you download sheet music on NewCenturyGuitar.com?
It’s quick and easy:
2. Put the music you chose in the download cart and then click checkout.
3. Pay easily, safely and securely with PayPal. Some pieces, such as the opera arrangements, are free of charge and don’t require any payment.
4. You can download your premium quality PDF digital sheet music for classical guitar immediately. Start playing straight away!
- Popular elementary piece for classical guitar: First Flakes Falling
- Popular easy piece for classical guitar: New Blue
- Popular intermediate piece for classical guitar: Chase Music
- Popular advanced piece for classical guitar: The Boy From Minas Gerais 1944
- Popular very advanced piece for classical guitar: Wind in The Woods
If you are interested in new music for classical guitar, educational music, guitar music PDF files and gear reviews written especially for classical guitarists, you might want to bookmark this site. That will make it easier to return from time to time.
Have you read my articles? Here, have a look at some of the most recent ones:
Adventures in Microphone Land, Part II
This article continues the story of my pursuit of the best possible sound that can be achieved in recording classical guitar at home. Like the last time, I've also made a comparison video.
Quick recap: In the first part of the story, Microphones for Guitar (link), I compared different types of microphones ranging from several condenser mics to an active ribbon microphone. I arrived at the conclusion that a ribbon mic was clearly the best for my purposes, and very probably worth looking into, if you're recording your classical guitar at home. You should check that first article out, if you haven't already—at least see the videos!
But there were some questions left over for this second part:
- As good as my sE Electronics VR2 Voodoo ribbon microphone is, maybe there is something better for me out there?
- Is quality dependent on price in ribbon microphones? Can a relatively cheap ribbon mic be any good?
- How could I gain the ability to record in stereo—I was not ready to pay the new asking price for another sE VR2 (900€) just to be able to record in stereo.
Maybe I could get another, cheaper ribbon microphone to complement the one I already had?
Reading James Herriot's wonderful stories about his life as a vet, I came across an interesting phrase, hybrid vigor. In short, hybrid vigor means "the improved...quality in a hybrid offspring (Wikipedia)". For example, a mixed breed dog is usually healthier than purebred dogs. But how does all this relate to music?
Let's face it: guitarists often play out of tune. There are many reasons for this, from forgetful or uninformed players to bad strings and, unfortunately, faulty guitars. I've learned about these things the hard way; I've been uninformed myself, I've had plenty of bad strings and also a bad guitar or two!
In this article, I'll first tell you about my views on how to tune a guitar, and later we'll see how you can easily test your strings and your guitar for intonation (accuracy of pitch) and what you can do if something's not right.Click here for the full post
Microphones for guitarists
In this article, I compare several typical examples of the kind of microphones that guitarists use to record classical or acoustic guitars:
sE Electronics VR2 Voodoo, an active ribbon microphone
Beyerdynamic MC930, a high quality small diaphragm condenser microphone
AKG C1000s, a popular, affordable small diaphragm condenser microphone
Olympus LS-11, a handheld stereo PCM recorder
And, just for comparison, the built-in microphone in my Nikon D800 camera
I'm not sure if anyone's noticed, but I keep fiddling with every aspect of newcenturyguitar.com to make this site better.
Most of the work is behind the scenes, but this morning, I rewrote the page About me and music. I realized that I had failed to include some key bits of info, like my guitar teachers. I had in fact left the names out on purpose, mistaking the usual mention of past teachers is resumes as bragging, when in fact it is a form of thanking your teachers for their contribution to your growth.
I also included a bit about my parents. I cannot adequately thank them, of course, not anymore; but a mention of them is very necessary, to me especially.
It's fiendishly difficult to engage website visitors in a conversation, as I've found out, or to get any kind of direct feedback. It would be extremely helpful, indeed essential, for the betterment of newcenturyguitar. So, if you read this, please, comment or send a message:
how could I improve newcenturyguitar.com for you?Click here for the full post
Thank you for visiting my site! I’d really like to hear from you, and I hope to see you back here. And please share this with any of your friends who might be interested in new classical guitar music!