Clap by Steve Howe

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TGNeil
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Fri May 28, 2021 10:20 am

Hey Folks,
After at least 10 years of avoiding this, but working on a plan for much of the time, I finally have a workable version of Steve Howe's Clap, from The Yes Album in 1971. The arrangement finally came together when I found a great treatise of multiple versions put together by Conall Gallagher. All 39 pages of his doc are included with the lesson, which I will put out over the next couple weeks or so. I strongly suggest taking it in bite-sized pieces, taking your time, and playing all the parts very slowly at first.

Steve Howe joined Yes in 1970 and significantly changed their direction into the developing progressive rock genre. The transformation was completed in 1971 with the addition of Rick Wakeman and their 4th album Fragile. Steve's contributions to their 3rd album, The Yes Album included his solo instrumental Clap.

The piece was written quickly around the time of the birth of Steve's son Dylan and pays homage to ragtime guitar, Chet Atkins, and even a quote from Mason Williams' Classical Gas.

After playing and messing with this piece for about 20 years, I have finally been able to come up with an approach to teaching it to advanced fingerpicking students. Steve plays Clap with a flat pick using the hybrid technique of adding the middle and ring fingers to play many of the notes. I approach this with a thumb pick and 3 fingers, which also lets me strum parts using the fingers. I think this will be more accessible to most students.

A turning point in my getting a picture of the piece was finding what was almost a treatise on it by Conall Gallagher, published around 2000. His breakdown compared at least 3 separate audio and 5 video recordings, looking at every measure and every little difference. This fabulous doc (all of 39 pages) is included in the attachments for anyone who would really like to do a deep dive into Clap.





dew52
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Mon May 31, 2021 9:49 pm

Hallelujah, Clap is here! I've been waiting for you to do this for 11 years. I'm psyched to finally correct all the mistakes, and cheap short cuts, I've been making for all these years. It has been my dream to go to a party somewhere, where someone hands me a guitar, and I unexpectedly blow them away with this song. I'll let you know how that goes. Thank you Neil.


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TGNeil
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Tue Jun 01, 2021 11:38 am

Thanks for the message and I am definitely happy to have gotten to this. Parts 4 and 5 are added now.

Neil


thereshopeyet
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Tue Jun 08, 2021 7:53 am

Neil

I just viewed some of your amazing lesson on Steve Howe's Clap.
What a feat and complementary lesson on this wonderful dynamic masterpiece.

Dermot

:D


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TGNeil
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Tue Jun 08, 2021 9:33 am

Thanks Dermot,

It was a fun project to finally wrap up. The remaining parts are now live.

Neil


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