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I don't know why it happens but when I blow a specific higher pitch note, my right ear rings like its going to burst(like someone is playing shakuhachi in my ear). I mean I have to bend my head and put my ear to my shoulder if I wanna continue playing it.
I wonder why its happening, is it something to do with resonating frequency of my eardrum.
I had similar symptoms a few years ago. At shakuhachi lessons I had to turn my head away from my teacher on certain notes because it just hurt too much.
I ended up going to a doctor who sprayed my ears out with warm water. A big wax plug fell out and my hearing was super sensitive for a few days. It was almost like that plug in my ear was causing a standing wave to form in my ear.
You might just have the same problem...
Thanks, I think I might be having the same problem, now I remember that I feel my one ear less sensitive when cleaning with a bud. I guess it must be having a large wax deposition.
I should go see doctor right now.
The wax causing a standing wave is interesting. I have noticed when playing into a microphone, my amplifieer system produce some specific frequency hum. One flute in particular is tuned so one note is also at this exact frequency and whenever I play that note the volume is increased due I think to a boost in feedback.
Although this is quite an old topic, it might still be worth passing on the wu wei method for removing ear wax.
I occasionally have problems with excessive wax due to being exposed to excessive noise levels a few years back. I had a real problem at one point because for some reason the wax was so compacted that it wasn't possible to syringe my ears.
I solved the problem by lying in a very hot bath. I think my blood temperature would have risen as well as the overall body heat, but whatever the reason, it softened the wax so that I was able to remove it in quite large chunks.
Perhaps this is an odd first post, but when I saw this topic I thought I should mention that there's a gentle and very effective cure for this problem, especially if syringing doesn't work.
Last edited by Sweep (2008-07-22 20:44:20)
Having damaged my ears in the music-halls of San Francisco, I have to wear a special ear-plug onl called 'musician ear-plugs" whenever I blow, but onlly as the higer resigisters of the shakuhachi really aggravate the tinnitus in my right ear. I can still appreciate and distinguish the fine pitched notes from the flat and sour ones, but without the plugs my ear rings like church bells on a Sunday morning. The plugs are specially molded in the ear, cost approx. 100 dollars per plug.
More on tinnitus: I have been so bummed out lately due to the fact that my musician earlplug is not able to filter out those high-register notes I've been practicing aggravating my tinnitus to the point where I was contemplating giving up shakuhachi. A doctor at the hospital I work out suggested taking up the basson, but I love the shakuhachi too much to abandon it so soon, so I've been researching earplugs and there different ratings and found the "HOWARD LEIGHT" plugs with a NRR (noise reduction rating) of 33 to be most effective. So my spirits lifted, I'm intent on keeping the course. Tinnitus is a curse for a musican, very, very annoying, to say the least! I only have myself to blame--too many nights of unprotected rockin and rollin!
Easier said than done, but those high notes need to be practiced very very softly. It's hard, but it pays dividends in the long run. And then, there's always the longer flutes, and by that I mean those that are pitched a major 6th or more below a 1.8 instrument. Just my .02 whatevers.
Thanks for the information, I may seriously have to consider using a longer flute though I have heard they are can be physically detrimental to the body, putting strains on hands and wrists. I just ordered a pair of shooters earmuffs from Amazon because my tinnitus is really acting up as I play the high notes more. After speaking to an audiologist yesterday, I'm gonna use a earplug and a earmuff over my right ear to protect it from further damage. I don't want to stop playing. I'm trying to play the high notes softer, its just that sometimes you want to go up and up..so I'm hoping plugs and muff with help.
By all means, ears first! When they're gone they're gone, and they won't come back. There are also companies that make fitted earplugs to audiologists's specifications, but they're pricey.
Longer flutes can take some time to become comfortable with. For me, the process was acquiring slightly larger flutes over time, and then, rather than _making_ my fingers cover the holes, _allowed_ my fingers to cover holes without stressing any joints. Making sure hands are warm and relaxed and habitual stretching help. My longest shakuhachi is a 42.875 inch critter by Perry Yung, and it only took a few days to get comfortable with it.
This whole exercise is supposed to be fun, (however it is one defines one's own personal fun), and hearing loss and stressed joints is not fun, so we probably should not do things that make it not so. Other Forum Members have long/longer flutes and no doubt will be writing with more info/ideas.
Best wishes on your quest for better hearing.
Mike Raftery wrote:
Thanks for the information, I may seriously have to consider using a longer flute though I have heard they are can be physically detrimental to the body, putting strains on hands and wrists. .
This can be minimized if you hold them the right way. Look at my youtube videos to see the "best way" to hold long flutes.
Also you are in San Fran. Meet Ken LaCosse, he has a "serpent" long flute which doubles up on itself so it is a 3.2 very low pitch, but plays like a 2.4. I think it's for sale. Ken? If not he can make another for you.
In the worst case there are (at least) 3 honkyoku which are only in the low octave, "Kyorei", "Hi Fu Mi Cho" and "Garyoken Takeshirabe" maybe you should cool it with the high notes and woodshed on those tunes until you figure out a solution.
Ken LaCosse, he has a "serpent" long flute which doubles up on itself so it is a 3.2 very low pitch, but plays like a 2.4. I think it's for sale. Ken? If not he can make another for you.
Here it is. I still have it.
Just found this shot. Guess who??
Yes, I've read some about Ken's local shakuhachi shop and have spoken briefly on the phone with Ken about teachers in the Bay Area. I suspect it is only a matter of time before I make a trip to the shop, but first I want to learn some more on the smaller ones. I love the sound of the big flutes but also appreciate the high, glass-like delicacy of a fine toned 1.8 I hear on CDs and such. Geez, today my thumb was aching from holding up the Yuu I practiced on for a couple of hours, I can't imagine the effect of using 2.0 or bigger will have. Speaking of thumbs, when holding the lower flute steady with my right thumb do I put the pressure on the pad of the thumb or that first joint. Either way, pain eventually develops, but to use the pad I feel I twist the hand into an awkward angle. I will check out those UTube videos, Brian, and check for tips. Thanks, brothers.
Mike Raftery wrote:
Either way, pain eventually develops, but to use the pad I feel I twist the hand into an awkward angle. I will check out those UTube videos, Brian, and check for tips. Thanks, brothers.
You should never grip the flute in such a way that it "twists" anything. Experiment and find some way that doesn't hurt. The way I hold it is unorthodox but it works for me. It also depends on the size of your hands. Hole placement on a 2.1 or 2.2 is more comfortable for me than 1.8.