Francisco Tárrega

(1852-1909)


Country: Spain

Francisco Tárrega is often referred to as the "Father of the classical guitar" due to his contributions of self-penned compositions and arrangements of music by other composers. He was born in Villarreal, Spain in 1852 and listened to his father's guitar playing of flamenco and other other styles while a child.

Tárrega damaged his eyesight after falling into an irrigation channel, his father feared that Tárrega would end up completely blind, and so moved the family to Castellón de la Plana where his child could learn music, and be able to later earn an income despite his impairment. Both of his early music teachers, Eugeni Ruiz and Manuel González, were blind.

The famous Spanish guitarist Francisco Tarrega

The famous Spanish concert guitarist, Julián Arcas, heard the young Tárrega play and persuaded his father to allow him to move to Barcelona where he could study with Arcas, in 1862.

Later, in 1874, Tárrega entered the Madrid conservatory via a sponsorship of a wealthy merchant named Antonio Canesa. There, Tárrega studied composition under Emilio Arrieta, who subsequently persuaded him to abandon any ideas of a career with the piano, and to focus on the guitar instead.

Tárrega's music is amongst the most popular of all guitar composers, he penned classics such as Recuerdos de la Alhambra , and Lágrima.

Free sheet music by Francisco Tárrega

Lágrima