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5 Beautiful Classical Guitar Solos for Beginners

by Jules Fitzgerald, guitarist and blogger at  knowyourinstrument.com

Beginners to classical guitar can easily feel overwhelmed with the amount of musical knowledge and technique they need to learn and gain mastery of. Something that can alleviate the stress and keep you motivated to practice is being able to play a beautiful song. 

We have here a number of classical guitar solos that beginners would enjoy learning to play and can soon play on their own instrument. These compositions are inherently beautiful and impressive so that whether you’re playing by yourself or in front of an audience, you will surely have a wonderful and fulfilling experience that will make you want to keep playing as often and as long as you can.

 
Greensleeves

No one really knows who composed this traditional English folk song - legend says it was written by Henry VIII for no other than Anne Boleyn, but history has no actual proof. Moreover, the centuries-old piece is based on an Italian composition style that only reached England after the death of the king, so the song is more likely to be Elizabethan in origin. 

Nevertheless, nearly everyone who’s had music lessons can play it, as it’s often taught to all beginners regardless of instrument, whether it’s piano, classical guitar, violin or flute.

”Greensleeves” is also highly recognizable as it has become a holiday staple. An 1865 version with lyrics penned by William Chatterton Dix is titled “Whose Child Is This?” and can be heard everywhere Christmas is celebrated.


Study in C Major

Composed by Fernando Sor, one of the most eminent classical musicians of the 19th century, “Study in C Major” is another piece that beginners should have in their repertoire. This song isn’t too technically demanding, making it a great piece for beginners to learn. With it being sweet, gentle and mellow, this song is a delightful melody that is beautifully simple yet is still a joy to hear.


Minuet

Yes, this is the song you usually hear in the background in period films and documentaries, particularly in scenes showing a grand ballroom. For more than 200 years, it was believed to have been composed by Johann Sebastian Bach. However, “Minuet in G Major” is now attributed to another German musician, Christian Petzold.  


Country Dance

Here’s something a little bit more upbeat yet still easy and fun to play for beginners. Ferdinando Carulli’s “Country Dance” is a fantastic way to practice your simplified arpeggios. This piece is simple, and beginners can learn it quickly.  


The Entertainer

How about something a little more contemporary? By contemporary we mean composed in the 20th century. If you’ve ever experienced being put on hold when calling an office, chances are you’ve heard “The Entertainer” - yes, it’s that little ditty that you couldn’t help but hum or move your head along to. Terribly old-school technology we know, but those things did happen and did work to keep callers uh, entertained while the person they sought out was being called.

“The Entertainer” was a “classic rag” composed by Scott Joplin in 1902. It’s a great little song you’ll have fun playing and your audiences would love hearing. 

When learning these songs, remember to be patient and start slow. Take things measure by measure and increase your accuracy along with your speed. Use a metronome as a guide, and forgive yourself if you make mistakes every now and then. It’s all part of learning - just try it again, as often as you need to. Take a break when you get tired so you’ll feel fresh when you come back to your classical guitar. With enough practice and determination, you’ll soon be able to nail these songs and more. Have fun!

 

 

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