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Fandango is probably a familiar-sounding form for most people, because it inspired many composers outside of Andalusia to write fandangos, including classical composers such as Rameau, Scarlatti and Boccherini. 

The fandango in flamenco is a style that is both sung and danced to. One of my favourite books for guitarists about fandango is Alain Faucher‘s Keys to Fandango (Editions Affedis).

Alain Faucher defines the two different types of flamenco fandangos: the fandangos de Huelva (also called a fandanguillo) and the slower fandangos grandes or fandangos libres


Keys to Fandango is written for guitarists, but includes the words to many of the fandangos which he has transcribed there, and he explains clearly where the accents of the 12-beat cycle should occur within the poetic lines.

He has made an excellent choice of transcriptions of different fandangos, such as fandangos performed originally by singer Enrique Montoya and accompanied by Sabicas, Paco Taranto accompanied by Rafael Riqueni, Pansequito accompanied by Juan Habichuela. El Pele accompanied by Vicente Amigo, and an extra favourite of mine, Fernanda de Utrera singing Al Mismo Juego accompanied by Juan Maya ‘Marote‘.

In the last section of the book he gives examples of falsetas (small flamenco themes or riffs) of fandangos de Huelva created by guitarists such as Paco de Lucía (Montiño from his Solo Quiero Caminar album), Enrique de Melchor, (Aguardiente from his Cuchichi album), Vicente Amigo (Mensaje from his Vivencias Imaginadas album), Serranito, Sabicas and Pepe Habichuela.

© 2010 Thérèse Wassily Saba