Canon in D

Hi guys,

Since I am still stuck with a classical guitar because I am travelling, I am trying to get the most out of it… (can’t wait to buy a Tele though).

So the last weeks I really focused on this piece:

Funny enough: it is the first piece I tried to learn on guitar - which does not make any sense. When I started 12(?) years ago with guitar, I was playing this piece on violin. After getting a guitar I wanted it to play there too… obviously it was way to difficult. So, over the last decade or so, I came back to it every few months/ years.

Finally, I (kind of) got it together. It still is too hard, I make a lot of mistakes, and I needed a million takes to finish but - there it is :slight_smile:

Let me know what you think - as always, constructive criticism is welcome!

I suppose that my right hand technique is kinda bad, but I could not find anything for it over here on Justin’s platform, does somebody have a tip? It heard that there are some different ways to pluck the sting, but I don’t know any of it :crazy_face:


Beautiful, always loved this piece. Fantastic job and extremely well played. :slight_smile:


That sounded great and looks good to me. So what that you pick strings like a finger style steel rather than a classically trained player? Does it really matter that much?

There are a lot of online classes for classical right hand technique if you look.

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Bravo, Kevin. That sounded wonderful to me. As Justin often says, it must feel good, and that felt good to me. Some truly impressive moments with challenging chord shapes and stretches.

Beyond me to off any feedback to aid improvement. I was going to @mention @Jamolay but see Joshua caught this one and shared some references as I figured he would.

I am aware there are also some books one can get hold of that will guide one down the classical learning path, that should cover the techniques with studies … is etude the correct word in context … to help practice and develop as a classical player.

As you have picked up Justin’s lessons are geared towards finger-style played on a steel string, rather than classical technique.

That said, when you acquire the tele I’d love to hear this played on an electric with suitable tone, like I recall videos of Richie Blackmore playing Ode to Joy.

Hi Kevin,
Nice :clap: :bouquet:
I’m going to learn to play this one on my electric guitar in the new year, … probably a slightly different version, although I didn’t see many (for me) good tutorials that quickly,so i don`t have a choice I’m afraid :smile:,… I hope Justin can give a lesson about this very soon :crossed_fingers: :sweat_smile:

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Wow Kevin that was beautiful. What a lot of work you’ve put into that piece. Well done.

Wow, that sounded great! Love this piece - it pops up in so many contexts - even metal (like the last few minutes here The Seven Angels - YouTube )

Really impressive work with both hands on a complex fingerstyle arrangement. I loved the sigh of relief at the end!

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Thank you so much! :slight_smile:

Well good point… most of the stuff I want to play is definitely fingerstile. But maybe there are some fundamentals that are worth learning? I don’t know, what do you think?

Yeah, and it is what I like more also… there are some classical pieces that I really enjoy, but I won’t persue that too much.

I just wanted to go to bed and finish recording! :crazy_face:

Wow. It is beautiful. Brings back a lot of memories. This is the first finger-style song I learnt, which motivates me to get into acoustic guitar and makes me who I am today.

Uhm. I do not learn finger-style from Justin. Just learn the song (get the tab, watch the original artist, this is important) that inspire me to play. It does take time to develop the technique and this is where all those Justin’s advice/reminder come in.

Thank you for sharing! Kind of want to play it on my guitar right now huh huh

Canon Rock! I often hear some random youngster play in local guitar store.
Makes me want to learn it. Damn

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Fundamentals are always worth learning. In classical training there is a lot of time and emphasis on how you fingers touch and pluck or drive the strings. It is an obsession with “perfect tone”. I suppose there are pluses to it.

If you really want to play nylon and optimize for classical structure, then yes, dive deep into it. But I would suggest starting by spending some time looking at and thinking of it, like in videos similar to the ones I attached.

Mostly, I think spending a little thought on how the finger strikes a string and releases it to make a tone and how to do that with reasonable efficiency, would help anyone with desire to finger pick regardless of classical or other genre.

Then it is all practice. Picking patterns arpeggios and other structured patterns so the fingers get superb at finding their way.

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I think it sounds amazing, well done. The length of this piece is beyond reach.

So sweet! Not exactly the kind of stuff I aspire to play having stiff little fingers xD Thanks for sharing!

Brilliant :open_hands:

Very impressive. I know a lot of work went into that. You’re sounding good!

There are two major right hand “plucking” techniques: free strokes and rest strokes. It looks like you’re using free strokes. If you search for “free stroke vs. rest stroke” on the web or youtube you should turn up a lot of info.

That said, I wouldn’t worry too much about free vs. rest strokes right now. I think you’d see more benefit from practice alternating your fingers (e.g., index/middle/index/middle). That will make it easier to maintain a smooth flow, and it will greatly help when you’re playing faster passages.

That’s great Kevin :musical_note::musical_note:

Not a criticism, but if you wanted to expand this would be an awesome piece to layer up with a looper.

Such a beautiful piece! Thank you for sharing, Kevin. I did like Dave’s suggestion about layering up with a looper.


“Focus” - Lol.

Lovely piece of music very nicely played.
It was like a year’s worth of finger exercises in 4 minutes. :slight_smile:

Watching the rain hammer against my window whilst this soothes the soul.

Great job.


It is similar for me too. Justin’s tutorials and (especially chords, practice routine, etc.) was super valuable and I defiantly could not have done it without him!

It’s always isn’t it? :smile:


Great tip, thanks!

Also a Great idea :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:
Can’t wait to try it on my electrical. Funny enough, there are a lot of covers with exactly this chord sequence, for example “Memory’s” from Maroon IV.


Very tough, but an excellent job!