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I escaped down to the shore for a little extra oxygen, and this morning I went to play at the beach.
It was quite windy, which was a bummer at first - the notes barely came out. But after getting tired of getting squeezed up in little corners here and there away from the wind, I remember Bob Dylan's old hit and decided, what the hell, that it might be good practice to just forget it and blow in the wind.
After an hour or so the notes started coming through ok, and I was blowing much harder than I usually do. I also found that playing directly against the wind is not so bad, it's when you're sideways that it's the hardest. But still possible if you blow really strong!
I'm going to start doing this whenever possible, it seems to really help embouchure and volume. Plus it feels so good to play the shakuhachi when you're so close to nature, hearing the waves, feeling the cool breeze and the light winter sun on your skin. I went for a swim afterwards, and it felt really good. There was barely anybody at the beach. No crowds, no pollution. And I had played quite loud against the wind.
Do you guys do this sometimes? Play outside in the wind? Do you find it helps?
Yes it's a very good practice technique. Any kind of playing in nature or in noisy situations is good. Watazumi used to go down to the train yard and blow.
PS III Note that all three objects holding the score have something to do with beverage in some sort of way (except for the clothes pegs).
Did they all contain Bowmore, Kees?
Nilton Machado wrote:
...Do you guys do this sometimes? Play outside in the wind? Do you find it helps?
I love playing in nature. We live two blocks from Central Park in New York City (as natural as it gets here!) and I I always bring a flute when I'm there with the kids, which is nearly every day in the summer. It's wonderful to jam with the birds.
Wind, as you pointed out, can be a very challenging aspect of playing outdoors. I played at an outdoors festival last summer in San Francisco with Heiwa, a unique Taiko group comprised of grandmothers. It was quite windy that day. The sound would disappear with each gust of wind. I had to keep turning away from the wind to get the sound back. When you are in front of an audience, it can get annoying to say the least
It's a good thing the drums were there to fill the space.
... Any kind of playing in nature or in noisy situations is good. Watazumi used to go down to the train yard and blow.
Yes, another favorite place to practice, in the NYC subways! I love how the thunderous crackling of the Express trains flavors the Ma.
In some ways, the environment defines your sound similarly to how the shape a canvas defines a painting. When playing indoors, you can hear how the sound bounces off the walls. This can influence how you shape your notes. When playing outdoors, there is no "room tone" so it can help you develop a clearer picture of the sound want.
Kees, looks like a heavenly set up you have there
Last edited by Yungflutes (2009-07-07 07:51:49)
Looks like he must've used the cup with the spoon in it for his Absinthe
Interesting to see a jointed jinashi flute with a Tozan inlay....
blowing at the train yard - that sounds like a watazumi diversion! 8P
hi perry! it must have been tough performing in those conditions. maybe that's why the komuso wore the straw hats!
kees - with all those drinks and the bad luck...just add a dead black chicken and it will look exactly like a macumba thing...
I take my shakuhachi to the shore and up mountains frequently, and the wind will definitely know if you're blowing correctly or not. It can lead to the ironic situation that one may have to turn around to face away from the gorgeous view of the sea or the landscape below you to escape the wind, but hey, it's still worth it.
Here are me playing outside at the river near my mom's home. This is a place where you just can get by crossing the sea. It was a wonderful experience to play there. I often play outside.