Gymnopédie No. 1 by Satie for Guitar (Lesson, PDF)

Gymnopédie No. 1 by Erik Satie. PDF sheet music or tab edition for classical guitar.

Gymnopédie No. 1 by Erik Satie (1866-1925) arranged for classical guitar. PDF sheet music or tab edition for classical guitar. Comes with both a notation-only edition and a tab edition. Late-Intermediate (grade 7). This is a PDF download.

Sheet Music or Tab Edition

Gymnopédie No. 1 From Trois Gymnopédies for Piano by Erik Satie (1866-1925) with the dedication “à Mademoiselle Jeanne de Bret”. The Gymnopédies, or Trois Gymnopédies, are originally three piano compositions written by French composer and pianist Erik Satie. He completed the whole set in 1888, but were published individually in 1888 and the second in 1895. The tempo marking is just excellent: Lent et douloureux (slow and painful). This Post-Romantic Era work has a beautiful simplicity to it and sounds lovely on the guitar despite some adjustments from the piano score. I’ve tried to keep the chords intact as much as possible but some revoicing was necessary. Here’s the Youtube Lesson Link if you want to watch it there.

Video Performance & Lesson 

Capo – A capo adds a light and higher pitch charm as well as equalizes the sound of the open vs fretted notes. I prefer to capo the 4th fret but it is only personal preference and completely optional. It has no relation to the desired pitch of the arrangement, just a sweet spot on the instrument.

Bar 34 – The use of the 2nd finger on C# is not ideal so special attention to sustain and legato is needed. Advanced players may wish to use their 3rd finger on C# if the stretch is feasible.

Bar 37-39 and 45-47 – The upward moving accompaniment is awkward but does add a nice moment in upper positions. I originally arranged it for first position but it sounded a little static overall. If possible, try to sustain the F# and G on the first beat as long as possible while softly cascading upward with the accompaniment. Some students may have to release notes early if the stretches are difficult.

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