Villa-Lobos etude no. 12 chord shapes

Villa-Lobos Etude 12 Micro Study 2 – Chord Shapes

Villa-Lobos Etude 12 Micro Study 2 is a guitar lesson designed to help with playing the 1st section chord shapes, in this case for Etude 12 by Villa-Lobos. These extra lessons are all part of the #villalobos12in12 challenge.

Villa-Lobos Etude 12 Chord Shapes

This is a short micro study which will help get closer to learning the chord shapes, and practice the shifting required in etude 12. It is a very small focused lesson which utilizes the two main chord shapes, and it will improve your overall LH touch mechanism.

villa-lobos etude no. 12 chord shapes


LH Control & pressure awareness

This exercise for etude 12 works the LH pressure technique. It uses a single shape (A min), and moves it up in, almost, a chromatic sequence on 2 different string sets. The idea is to focus on how much energy you are using to press with the LH fingers to achieve a clean set of notes. By the way, you don’t actually need the thumb to play, so do not squeeze with it. It is there for support only.

KEY Strategy

LH Fine awareness

The fine control here is developed with awareness of how much energy is required to play the LH fingers, and then the ability to adjust it as you move up the fretboard. Be aware string action (height) has a direct impact on how hard you press, especially in the upper regions past fret VI. This takes dedicated mindful practice to perfect.

Other Info

Note: It is very difficult to play Etude no. 12 with a forced LH, the shifts will not be clean or clear and fatigue will set in very quickly.


Almost buzzed notes

The LH finger pressure should just be below where your notes buzz. Pressing any harder will be counterproductive in this etude. Do not play mindlessly here.

And Remember: do not squeeze the LH thumb – it supports.

Want More?

Check Out Approaching Villa-Lobos Etude No. 1

Approaching Etude No. 1 Villa-Lobos

#villalobos12in12! what is that?

I bet, like me, you want to play all 12 of Villa-Lobos’ awesome studies? Find it a little tough to get some of them started, or even finished? Want some help? #villalobos12in12 is a community led challenge that aspires to inspire and help get these fantastic pieces up and running. And it all starts here at CGRocks.

Check out this more detailed post below.

#villalobos12in12 Challenge

If you want a free copy of the study guide to etude no. 1 join the CGRocks community below.


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Classical guitarist who strives to share a little #6stringinspiration.

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