Skip to product information
1 of 3

The Bible of Classical Guitar Technique

by Hubert Kappel

SKU: 02-610425

Regular price
$29.99 USD
Regular price
Sale price
$29.99 USD
More than just a book about technique. Hubert Kappel, a worldwide-recognised and successful classical concert guitarist, left himself more than two decades to publish this book so he could pour all of his teaching experience, spanning more than four decades, into this work. Of the book's three large sections, the second, practical part makes up the bulk, containing many technique exercises (arpeggios, scale exercises, hammer-ons and pull-offs with the left hand, tremolo, flamenco techniques, speed training, vibrato techniques and dynamic exercises). This technical part is framed by theoretical topics: detailed tips for effective and systematic practice and how to move when playing. In the third part fingering techniques and memory training are tackled and comprehensive plans for daily practice cycles are presented. Notation only. 245 pp.

More Details


Introductory Words by Aniello Desiderio

Suggestions for Using this Technique Handbook

Part One: Prerequisites and Basics

I. Short Introduction to Systematic Practicing

  • Prerequisites
  • Organizing Your Practicing
  • Practice Objectives
  • On Practicing Technique
  • On Sound, Rhythm and Tempo While Practicing
  • Motivation
  • Practicing with a Metronome
  • The Importance of Playing from Memory While Practicing
  • On the Frequent Repetition of Difficult Passages, Single Measures or Phrases

II. Holding the Instrument

  • The Four Points of Contact on the Body
  • The Correct Angle Towards the Body
  • Alternate Ways to Hold the Guitar
  • The Fusion of Body and Guitar into a Single Sound Source

III. Left Hand Posture (LH)

  • Four Universal Rules
  • The Principles of the Four Hand Shapes
  • Different Positions of the Left Arm-Hand-Finger System, Clarified by the Fourth Hand Shape
  • The Positioning of the Fingertips

IV. Short Outline of the Movements of the Left Hand (LH)

  • The Shoulder-Arm-Hand System
  • The Motion of the Arm
  • Basic Motions of the Fingers
  • Intonation and Finger Pressure
  • Left Hand Shift
  • Stretching and Contracting the Fingers
  • Ascending and Descending Slurs
  • Barre
  • Vibrato

V. Right Hand Posture (RH)

  • Posture
  • Base Finger Joint Position Relative to the Strings

VI. Tone Production and a Short Outline of the Movements of the Right Hand (RH)

  • Introduction
  • Nail Shape
  • Nail Length
  • Nail Shape of the Playing Finger
  • Polishing the Nails
  • Playing Angle of the RH
  • A System of Springs
  • Tirando: Sequence of Motions
  • Apoyando: Sequence of Motions
  • Sequence of Motions when Alternating Strokes (m-i and a-m-i)
  • Thumb Attack: Sequence of Motions
  • Tonal Colors and Point of Contact
  • Playing Chords (Several Notes Simultaneously): Sequence of Motions
  • Arpeggios: Sequence of Motions

Part Two: Technical Exercises

I. Arpeggios

  • The Practicing Units 48
  • Endurance, Evenness and Speed

Arpeggio Practicing Methods

  • 1. Variable String Assignments of p-i-m-a
  • 2. Impulse and Reflex Development
  • 3. Practicing with Fixed Fingers (RH)

Chord Progressions and LH Patterns

Arpeggio Practicing Units

  • A1 The 6 Basic Arpeggios
  • A2 6 Basic Arpeggios Expanded to 24
  • A3 Arpeggios with p-m-i, p-m-a, p-i-a
  • A4 Alternating Various Arpeggio Patterns
  • A5 12 Basic Arpeggios with Simultaneous Thumb Attacks
  • A6 12 Basic Arpeggios with Polyrhythms
  • A7 Arpeggios with p-i, p-m and p-a
  • A8 Important Two-Part Arpeggios
  • A9 The 12 Basic Arpeggios on Three Strings
  • A10 36 Six Note Arpeggios
  • A11 24 Eight Note Arpeggios
  • A12 Variations of the 12 Basic Arpeggios on Three Strings
  • A13 Arpeggios with Thumb Accompaniment
  • A14 Various Arpeggio Patterns
  • A15 12 Basic Arpeggios as Quintuplets
  • A16 Arpeggios with Two to Eight Note Groupings
  • A17 112 Arpeggios on the 2nd and 3rd Treble Strings
  • A18 Basic Arpeggios with Difficult String Crossings
  • A19 Playing Chords with Arpeggios and Repeated Notes
  • A20 One Finger Arpeggios over Several Strings
  • A21 Arpeggios with Thumb Accompaniment to Strengthen Your Attack

Intensive Training of Important Arpeggios

  • A22 Intensive: The Classic Arpeggio Pattern p-i-m
  • A23 Intensive: The Classic Arpeggio Pattern p-i-m-a

II. Coordination of the Left and Right Hands

Speed and String Crossing Exercises in the Right Hand

  • Speed Exercises with Repeating Rhythms on a Single String
  • Speed Exercises
  • String Crossing Exercises

Synchronization of Your Left and Right Hands – Exercises Using 2 Fingers from Each

  • Chromatic Triplet Exercises over All Strings

Synchronization Exercises While Changing Strings

Synchronization of 3 Fingers of the LH / 2 and 3 Fingers of the RH

Synchronization of 4 Fingers of the LH / 2 and 3 Fingers of the RH (24 Permutations)

Synchronization of 4 Fingers of Both the Left and Right Hands (8 Note Permutation)

  • Intensive Training of the Chromatic Permutations 1 2 3 4 and 4 3 2 1

Various Coordination Exercises

III. Scales in All Keys

Preparatory Studies for Scales and Runs

Scales over Two and Three Octaves in the Circle of Fifths and Fourths

  • Five Short Exercises for Major and Minor Scales

Applied Practicing Methods for Scales

  • 1. RH Patterns, 2. Repetitions, 3. Rhythms
  • 4. Accents, 5. Articulation 6. Dynamics

Examples for Practicing Single Scales and Runs

Scales in Triplets

Scales in Triplets with Three Finger Alternating Patterns a-m-i and p-m-i

Scale Practicing Models in the Circle of Fifths

  • 1. 24 Scales with Alternating Finger Patterns
  • 2. 24 Scales with Repetitions
  • 3. Using a-m-i and p-m-i in Four Note Groups
  • 4. The Practicing Model of the 12 Basic Arpeggios (Excluding the Thumb)

Practicing an Original Run Chosen from the Repertoire

IV. Ascending and Descending Slurs in the Left Hand

  • Immediately Changing from the Treble to the Bass Strings

Slurs with Two Fingers

  • Ascending Two Note Slurs
  • Descending Two Note Slurs
  • Combining Ascending and Descending Slurs
  • Two Note Slurs as Triplets
  • Complex Two Note Slurs as Triplets
  • Ascending Two Note Slurs While Crossing Strings
  • Descending Two Note Slurs While Crossing Strings
  • Two Note Slurs as Triplets While Crossing Strings
  • Two Note Slur Combinations While Crossing Strings
  • Two Note Slur Combinations as Triplets While Changing Strings

Slurs with Three Fingers

  • Group 1 Diatonic – Triplet Slurs
  • Group 2 Diatonic – Triplet Slurs
  • Groups 3 and 4 Chromatic – Triplet Slurs
  • Slurs with Three Fingers Divided into Four Note Groups
  • Combining Two and Three Note Slur Combinations
  • Ascending Slurs with Three Fingers While Crossing Strings

Ascending and Descending Slurs with Open Strings

  • Slurs with Two Fingers and an Open String
  • Slurs with Three Fingers and an Open String
  • Ascending and Descending Slurs as an Embellishment
  • Short and Intensive Slur Exercises
  • Scales with Slurs
  • Chromatic Scales with Slurs

Slurs with Fixed Fingers

  • Slurs with Fixed Fingers / With and Without Open Strings
  • Two Note Slurs with Triplets and a Second Part

LH Trill Exercises and Embellishments

  • Slur Exercise Taken from the Guitar Repertoire Tarrega, Variations on Paganini’s “Carnival of Venice”

V. Tremolo

General Practicing Methods

Preparatory Exercises with a-m-i

Tremolo Exercises on One String

Tremolo Exercises Coordinated with LH Exercises

Tremolo Exercises on Various Strings

VI. Flamenco Techniques

Rasgueado Technique

  • Rasgueado with One, Three and Four Fingers
  • Rasgueado with Thumb and Fingers

Pulgar Technique – The Special Thumb Technique in Flamenco

VII. Supplementary Technical Exercises for the Left Hand

Shift Position Exercises

  • Preparatory Shift Exercises
  • Shifts Resulting from Finger Motion
  • Direct Shift Exercises
  • Indirect Shift Exercises
  • Chromatic Scale on a Single String

Left Hand Independence Exercises

  • Exercises for Leaving the Fingers on the Strings
  • 12 Independence Exercises on Two Strings
  • Four Examples for Practicing
  • Independence Exercises for the Left Hand on Two Strings (Alternating Two Fingers)
  • Rhythmic Variations on Exercise 15 (“Two Against Three”)
  • Strength and Independence Exercises

Barre Exercises

  • Barre Exercises According to Llobet

Stretching Exercises for the LH 2E?/span> Thirds, Sixths, Octaves and Compound Thirds

VIII. Additional Technical Exercises for the Right Hand

Tirando and Apoyando Exercises

  • Tirando Arpeggios Alternating with Apoyando on Two Strings
  • Tirando Arpeggios Alternating with Repeated Notes in Apoyando
  • Alternating Tirando and Apoyando

Thumb Exercises

  • Aguado Study
  • Simultaneous Attaking and Muting with the Thumb
  • Coste Study op. 38, No. 23

Exercises to Help Avoid Nail Noise

Pizzicato Exercises

  • Pizzicato Exercise with Thumb and Index Finger
  • Pizzicato Exercise with Thumb, Index and Middle Fingers (Three Part)

Harmonics Exercises

  • Natural Harmonics
  • Artificial Harmonics

Alternating Exercises with the Pinky and i-m-a

Alternating Exercises with Fixed RH Fingers

IX. Practicing Playing Fast

  • Speed and Relaxation

Practicing Playing Fast with the Right Hand

  • Pure Reflex Development with Double Dotted Rhythms
  • Achieving Speed by Playing with the Outside of the Nail

LH Fingers “Sloppily” Placed on Purpose (Without Pressure)

  • Taregga Exercise No. 7

X. Exercises for Perfecting Musical Expression

Vibrato Technique

  • Sequence of Motions for Vibrato in the Left Hand
  • Rhythmic Vibrato Exercises
  • Exercises for Developing the Flexibility of Hand and Fingers
  • Vibrato Exercises with Two or More Fingers
  • Vibrato Exercises with Barre

Exercises for Practicing Dynamics

  • Developing a Broader Dynamic Range
  • Exercises for Fine Tuning Dynamics
  • Carcassi Etude op. 60, No. 2 in A Minor
  • J.S. Bach: Four Part Chorale “Wer weiß, wie nahe mir mein Ende”
  • Anton Diabelli: Sonata in C Major, Andante sostenuto, 14 Bars
  • Exercises at Different Dynamic Levels in Two-Part Harmony

The Arpeggiated Chord (Rolled) in a Polyphonic Chord

The Elastic Wrist Attack in Dolce Cantabile Playing

Part Three: Important Topics

I. Fingering Technique

Fingering and Interpretation

Left Hand Fingerings

  • 1. Tension and Release
  • 2. Incorporating Harmonic Reasoning when Developing LH Fingerings
  • 3. How to Use an Open String
  • 4. The Open String in Scales
  • 5. Analogous Fingerings
  • 6. Jumping with One Finger
  • 7. Special Issues with Fingerings Including Slurs
  • 8. Shifting by Contracting 1 and 4

Right Hand Fingerings

  • 1. Basic Fingering Rules for the Fingers of the Right Hand when Crossing Strings
  • 2. Special Issues Regarding RH Fingerings on the Bass Strings
  • 3. The Patterns p-m-i, a-m-i and p-a-m-i
  • 4. Arpeggio Patterns Applied to Scales
  • 5. Repeated Notes with a Single RH Finger
  • 6. Combining Different RH Arpeggio Patterns
  • 7. Using a-i on Neighboring Strings
  • 8. Special Issues when Using RH Fingerings in a Musical Context

II. Tuning the Guitar

Simple Tuning by Comparing Neighboring Strings

Tuning Using Harmonics and Octaves as an Aid

III. Playing from Memory – Memory and Mental Training

Playing from Memory

Memory Training

  • Associating Different Areas of Memory
  • Different Memory Training Methods

Mental Training

IV. Stage Fright and Fear of Performing

V. Technical Practice Guides for Daily Practicing

  • Short Technical Practice Guide – about 45 Minutes
  • Compact Technical Practice Guide – about 90 Minutes
  • Intensive Technical Practice Guide – about 3 Hours

TIP Directory