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#1 2010-02-08 14:42:56

TCB
Member
Registered: 2006-09-25
Posts: 34

Chikuho manual

Hi everyone,

I started to relearn my shakuhachi again after 2-year break. I used to have a teacher, now I am on my own. We used Chikuho notation. I still have the materials. I have been working through the practice exercises to try to train my embrochure again. Even though we spent two years of practice, we only worked through the very basic notes and the practice exercises. I am now wondering if there is a good self-learning manual in Chikuho notation. Riley Lee himself claims that none exists. I am justing wondering if there is one now since last time he said so. Thank you.

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#2 2010-02-08 15:16:40

Tairaku 太楽
Administrator/Performer
From: Tasmania
Registered: 2005-10-07
Posts: 3222
Website

Re: Chikuho manual

I asked Riley about this recently and he said "no".


'Progress means simplifying, not complicating' : Bruno Munari

http://www.myspace.com/tairakubrianritchie

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#3 2010-02-08 15:18:17

TCB
Member
Registered: 2006-09-25
Posts: 34

Re: Chikuho manual

Thank you for letting me know sad

Can anyone suggest something else that I might be able to "experiment"?

Last edited by TCB (2010-02-08 15:21:57)

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#4 2010-02-08 15:53:49

Tairaku 太楽
Administrator/Performer
From: Tasmania
Registered: 2005-10-07
Posts: 3222
Website

Re: Chikuho manual

Where do you live?


'Progress means simplifying, not complicating' : Bruno Munari

http://www.myspace.com/tairakubrianritchie

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#5 2010-02-08 16:52:39

TCB
Member
Registered: 2006-09-25
Posts: 34

Re: Chikuho manual

Cincinnati, OH

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#6 2010-02-08 18:13:17

Justin
Shihan/Maker
From: Japan
Registered: 2006-08-12
Posts: 540
Website

Re: Chikuho manual

TCB wrote:

I am now wondering if there is a good self-learning manual in Chikuho notation. Riley Lee himself claims that none exists. I am justing wondering if there is one now since last time he said so. Thank you.

Hi TCB
I have a self-learning manual for Chikuho-ryu but it is all in Japanese, appears to be about 80 years old and no doubt is anyway out of print. Chikuho-ryu is almost extinct here in Japan, along with their notation system. So I would not personally recommend learning that system as a "first language" so to speak. It may be useful as a second language but Kinko notation would be far more useful, and there are several self-learning books available which other members will be able to tell you about. This will also give you access to much more music, as both older styles and newer (much modern music is also available in Kinko notation) styles will be open to you. Of the older styles, of course the Kinko-ryu honkyoku and sankyoku reaching back into the Edo period, and then also other school's honkyoku which have been written in Kinko-ryu notation such as Jin Nyodo's school, or the Myoan schools, which use a varient of Kinko-ryu notation.

With Chikuho notation you are basically stuck with either Shimpo-ryu (where Chikuho notation came from) an old Kansai honkyoku lineage, which has almost no lineage holders left, and Chikuho-ryu which started in 1917. The only reason I could think of using this notation would be if you have a Chikuho-ryu teacher, but then I guess you would not be asking for a self-learning manual.

[EDIT: I now realise that Chikuho notation, although based on the older Shimpo-ryu notation mentioned, was modified to the point of being mutually unintelligible. In which case the 2 systems must be learned separately.]

Last edited by Justin (2010-12-30 10:37:34)

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#7 2010-02-08 22:58:12

Tairaku 太楽
Administrator/Performer
From: Tasmania
Registered: 2005-10-07
Posts: 3222
Website

Re: Chikuho manual

Justin's points are good. Get ahold of Michael Chikuzen Gould who teaches in Ohio, he's a respected teacher.

Justin if your book is 80 years old it's probably in the public domain, if you wanted to you could scan it and post it on the forum.


'Progress means simplifying, not complicating' : Bruno Munari

http://www.myspace.com/tairakubrianritchie

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#8 2010-02-08 23:44:12

Bogert
Member
From: Amagasaki-shi, Hyogo-ken
Registered: 2005-12-05
Posts: 203

Re: Chikuho manual

That would be really cool if you scanned it.  I'm curious to see it.


理趣経百字の偈
菩薩勝慧者 乃至尽生死 恒作衆生利 而不趣涅槃 般若及方便 智度悉加持 諸法及諸有    一切皆清浄 欲等調世間 令得浄除故 
有頂及悪趣 調伏尽諸有 如蓮体本染 不為垢所染    諸欲性亦然 不染利群生 大欲得清浄 大安楽富饒 三界得自在 能作堅固利

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#9 2010-02-09 01:56:18

LowBlow
Member
From: Germany
Registered: 2009-08-23
Posts: 15
Website

Re: Chikuho manual

TCB wrote:

Hi everyone,

I am now wondering if there is a good self-learning manual in Chikuho notation. Riley Lee himself claims that none exists. I am justing wondering if there is one now since last time he said so. Thank you.

There is an explanation of Chikuho notation in "The annals of the international Shakuhachi Society" Volume one pp117 - 132, along with some other writings. Written by Riley Lee. With this help you can read through original Chikuho stuff.


My teacher is teaching Chikuho pieces, but he have rewritten them in Kinko style.

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#10 2010-02-09 02:44:05

Moran from Planet X
Member
From: Here to There
Registered: 2005-10-11
Posts: 1524
Website

Re: Chikuho manual

LowBlow wrote:

My teacher is teaching Chikuho pieces, but he have rewritten them in Kinko style.

Is Jim Franklin still your primary teacher? If not, who is?


"I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass...and I am all out of bubblegum." —Rowdy Piper, They Live!

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#11 2010-02-09 06:33:28

purehappiness
Member
From: Connecticut USA
Registered: 2009-01-13
Posts: 528

Re: Chikuho manual

Scanning this so everyone can see and have a copy would be a great way to keep this part of history alive. Personally, I would love a copy if not to use then just for history's sake.


I was not conscious whether I was riding on the wind or the wind was riding on me.

Lieh-tzu

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#12 2010-02-09 07:20:17

Justin
Shihan/Maker
From: Japan
Registered: 2006-08-12
Posts: 540
Website

Re: Chikuho manual

I'll see what I can do but I have a lot on just now - I leave for Kyushu in a couple of days to perform and study, then as soon as I get back I will be going on meditation retreat. I'll be back home in about a month and see if I can scan some of it, though the pieces are actually not useful. As was typical of that time, beginners manuals contain "popular songs" which would have been well known and easy melodies at that time, so it was easy to know what you were meant to be playing, unlike the popularly unfamiliar honkyoku. However now these pieces are generally neither known nor liked! At least the finger chart is still useful though.

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#13 2010-02-09 08:30:00

Jam
Member
From: Oxford, England
Registered: 2009-10-02
Posts: 257

Re: Chikuho manual

I'm willing to help with any translation if it'll help smile

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#14 2010-02-09 10:36:10

TCB
Member
Registered: 2006-09-25
Posts: 34

Re: Chikuho manual

Thank you so much for those who responded. Yes, a scan of this material is invaluable to me. I am just looking for more stuff to practice. I mostly got the basic, in the sense of how to, not necessarily correctly playing. Also, many thanks to Tairaku for suggesting me a teacher. I am currently seeking for a job. So, a teacher is in the future, hopefully not so far. Again, thank you every one.

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#15 2010-02-09 10:41:33

Jim Thompson
Moderator
From: Santa Monica, California
Registered: 2007-11-28
Posts: 421

Re: Chikuho manual

Justin wrote:

I leave for Kyushu in a couple of days to perform and study

Hi Justin,
     Just curious who you are studying with in Kyushu. I'm going to take lessons from study  Yamato Shudo for 2 weeks in April. Just wondered if that's who you are studying with? Do you go there regularly?


" Who do you trust , me or your own eyes?" - Groucho Marx

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#16 2010-02-09 19:17:43

Josh
PhD
From: Grand Island, NY/Nara, Japan
Registered: 2005-11-14
Posts: 305
Website

Re: Chikuho manual

Hi Jim,
Justin and I are performing in the "Kumamoto Shakuhachi Festival" organized by Jeff Cairns this weekend. It should be a great event! Justin probably meant that there will be workshops on pieces by various schools. Although he may very well be studying privately while down there also.  We are both in a modern piece called "Beyond" and also playing Tamuke. I'll also be playing Sanya (yama tani) in Komuso attire. trying not to fall, trying not to fall...

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#17 2010-02-09 19:43:22

Jam
Member
From: Oxford, England
Registered: 2009-10-02
Posts: 257

Re: Chikuho manual

Best of luck to you both! smile

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#18 2010-02-09 19:55:56

Jim Thompson
Moderator
From: Santa Monica, California
Registered: 2007-11-28
Posts: 421

Re: Chikuho manual

Thanks Josh,
   Too bad I won't be around for that. Just the kind of thing I'd be looking for. Hope to see you in Nara. I won't know my schedule for a while.  Would love to see-hear you guys at work.
    Watch out for stairs in your outfit. If you fall over, save the video. Come to think of it, save the video anyway.
       Good luck!

Last edited by Jim Thompson (2010-02-09 20:12:19)


" Who do you trust , me or your own eyes?" - Groucho Marx

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#19 2010-02-10 03:07:20

Kiku Day
Shakuhachi player, teacher and ethnomusicologist
From: London, UK & Nørre Snede, DK
Registered: 2005-10-07
Posts: 922
Website

Re: Chikuho manual

TCB, I have a copy of a Chikuho learning manual somewhere in my piles of paper. I will try to find it.

I was surprised at discovering how well and alive the Fu Ho U notation system is in Kansai region due to the activities of the Chikuho School. Many people I met in Kansai only read Fu Ho U or both. There are still teachers in Kyushu teaching this too.

But yes, it would be so much easier for you to learn the Ro Tsu Re system as it is the most readily available notation around - unless you want to be affiliated with Chikuho and become a member of the school. Then it will be easy enough to buy scores through them. They also have loads of modern music in the Fu Ho U system - but as already mentioned you will be restricted to what they have published.


I am a hole in a flute
that the Christ's breath moves through
listen to this music
Hafiz

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#20 2010-02-10 04:57:21

Justin
Shihan/Maker
From: Japan
Registered: 2006-08-12
Posts: 540
Website

Re: Chikuho manual

Jim Thompson wrote:

Justin wrote:

I leave for Kyushu in a couple of days to perform and study

Hi Justin,
     Just curious who you are studying with in Kyushu. I'm going to take lessons from study  Yamato Shudo for 2 weeks in April. Just wondered if that's who you are studying with? Do you go there regularly?

Hi Jim
Yes I do visit Kyushu from time to time. Araki Kodo teaches in Kyushu once a month in 2, sometimes 3 places. This goes back to his grandfather's time, Araki Kodo III, who used to go there to teach. In those days it would have been a very long way! (It's still pretty far today, from Tokyo). So I sometimes join in with that and we play with really amazing shamisen/koto players, my favourite in all Japan actually. That is the Yanase family, who are head of the main shamisen school of Kita Kyushu, and whose lineage comes from the great Fukuda Eika, the playing partner of Araki Kodo III.

As for studying, I have a lot of interest in the Kyushu honkyoku. In Yokoyama's school we have some of the Kyushu honkyoku, which Watazumi brought to Tokyo. Also in Takahashi Kuzan's lineage we have some Kyushu honkyoku, but there are other pieces which I have to go to Kyushu to study. I'd rather not talk about the teachers in public as I'm not sure if they would like that, or the attention it might draw. Sometimes the shakuhachi world can be a little different from (what I imagine at least) the Western music lesson system might be like, with the pieces regarded as very precious and sometimes access restricted. Sometimes I think this may be good, though sometimes I think it can be too exclusive, not always in a positive way. Sometimes they have reasons though. There are instances, in Kyushu in particular, of certain characters making trouble and this just makes the teachers even more wary, making things more difficult for future students. So relationships take time to form. Perhaps shakuhachi study would be more encouraged if everyone were open, but then, on the positive side, this may help to keep styles somewhat isolated (and therefore preserve heterogeneity) and may also increase the perceived "specialness" or value for those studying, which can be a good thing.

Jim, if you are coming to Tokyo do let me know. You're welcome to visit!

Last edited by Justin (2010-02-10 05:00:28)

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#21 2010-02-10 05:16:59

Tairaku 太楽
Administrator/Performer
From: Tasmania
Registered: 2005-10-07
Posts: 3222
Website

Re: Chikuho manual

Justin wrote:

Sometimes the shakuhachi world can be a little different from (what I imagine at least) the Western music lesson system might be like, with the pieces regarded as very precious and sometimes access restricted. Sometimes I think this may be good, though sometimes I think it can be too exclusive, not always in a positive way. Sometimes they have reasons though. There are instances, in Kyushu in particular, of certain characters making trouble and this just makes the teachers even more wary, making things more difficult for future students.

Please elaborate.


'Progress means simplifying, not complicating' : Bruno Munari

http://www.myspace.com/tairakubrianritchie

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#22 2010-02-10 06:31:41

Justin
Shihan/Maker
From: Japan
Registered: 2006-08-12
Posts: 540
Website

Re: Chikuho manual

Hi Brian,
Well, as you know, the shakuhachi world in Japan can be very strict about copying notation for example. Partly this is due to money, and this would be understandable anywhere. When you have a very small publisher publishing to a very small group of people, it can be difficult to make money even to break even, and so people copying scores can have a very negative effect on the work of publishing. So simply out of respect, and seeing copying as theft, that is restricted. But then there is another side, which is, for example, notation and/or recordings which are no longer in print. I think many foreigners would think it should be OK to copy things which are out of print. I think that is reasonable too, as it is not taking business away from anyone, and without copying, they are not available. But in Japan, it is sometimes the case that people feel some recordings or notation should only be shared in a restricted way. The way that is restricted can vary. Sometimes maybe any member of that school. Or sometimes only "serious" members. Or sometimes only members who are studying that piece. And so on. Often a copy may be given to one person, but they are not expected to give it to anyone else. Or if they want to give it to someone else, they should ask the permission from the person they got the copy from. In that case it is good practice, when copying something, to ask what restrictions are on it. For example, "is it OK to give copies to my students"? I have seen Japanese also keep notes on their copies of when and from whom they copied the item, which helps in this process.

In fact this can happen with things which are published also. Some scores we can buy from Mejiro for example, or some other shop, and so anyone can buy them. But some scores can only be bought from certain teachers, and even if they are able to, they are not always willing to sell them to simply anyone. They are meant for "insiders". I have even bought a properly bound hard back book which was published by one of my teachers, but must be bought directly from him. When another of my teachers saw it, he explained that he managed to buy one also, and was proud that he had been considered a "serious" enough shakuhachi player to be accepted to buy the book, and congratulated me that I had also passed! This may sound like a different age, or you may just think it's weird! But one reason in this case may have been due to limited supply, perhaps. I suppose there are many reasons why things are like this, in the end.

Foreigners have quite a bad reputation in Japan. One side of this is that things are shared easily. For example, they often have a perception here that is a recording or notation is given to one foreigner, it is likely that soon everyone will have it. So they can be vary about foreigners for this.

So that is concerning restrictedness. Another problem is if someone teaches or performs saying that they have studied under such-and-such teacher, when they have either not studied, or not studied properly. This seems to have happened quite a lot. Usually if you stay under one teacher, this would not be a problem since most people will respect the teacher, and the teacher is there to keep an eye on you, or even "control" you. However this becomes more complicated if you visit a teacher who is not your main teacher. For example you might visit a teacher once, then claim that you learned 10 pieces perfectly, when actually you only had one lesson on one piece and never played that to the teacher's satisfaction. So, the teacher may feel you are misrepresenting them.

Some teachers would not care. Maybe they would just teach you, and let you do whatever you want with it. But often the teachers do care, especially if you perform or record, or teach. So some teachers are wary about teaching "outsiders".

Then there are some who may just want to keep their styles secret from other schools, and there may be various reasons for that. I don't think that is so positive. If it's a good technique, why would they not want to share it? I mean, if it is musically good, it should be positive to spread, right? There may be occasions also where people are shy to play for players who are technically good, or even may be people who have something to hide which may question their own authenticity or lineage.

All this put together can sometimes put a shroud of mystery over things, or even make things invisible, unknown to the larger shakuhachi community. And sometimes it can be difficult to know what the reason is. So it pays to tread gently. And it is also a good idea to be honest, and also to get permission before sharing things. Doing these will make less chance of accidentally upsetting people.

Last edited by Justin (2010-02-10 06:37:17)

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#23 2010-02-10 07:40:15

Jam
Member
From: Oxford, England
Registered: 2009-10-02
Posts: 257

Re: Chikuho manual

Not really relevant, but I used to live in Kitakyushu city. I loved it there. Interesting to know that such a well renowned school of Shamisen players exists there, and typical that I would live there and choose shakuhachi instead!

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#24 2010-02-10 11:25:47

TCB
Member
Registered: 2006-09-25
Posts: 34

Re: Chikuho manual

Hi Kiku,

Very kind of you. I am still a beginner, so sticking with what I know is the best option at this point for me. I look forward to your materials.

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#25 2010-02-10 11:34:44

purehappiness
Member
From: Connecticut USA
Registered: 2009-01-13
Posts: 528

Re: Chikuho manual

Justin wrote:

Hi Brian,
Well, as you know, the shakuhachi world in Japan can be very strict about copying notation for example. Partly this is due to money, and this would be understandable anywhere. When you have a very small publisher publishing to a very small group of people, it can be difficult to make money even to break even, and so people copying scores can have a very negative effect on the work of publishing. So simply out of respect, and seeing copying as theft, that is restricted. But then there is another side, which is, for example, notation and/or recordings which are no longer in print. I think many foreigners would think it should be OK to copy things which are out of print. I think that is reasonable too, as it is not taking business away from anyone, and without copying, they are not available. But in Japan, it is sometimes the case that people feel some recordings or notation should only be shared in a restricted way. The way that is restricted can vary. Sometimes maybe any member of that school. Or sometimes only "serious" members. Or sometimes only members who are studying that piece. And so on. Often a copy may be given to one person, but they are not expected to give it to anyone else. Or if they want to give it to someone else, they should ask the permission from the person they got the copy from. In that case it is good practice, when copying something, to ask what restrictions are on it. For example, "is it OK to give copies to my students"? I have seen Japanese also keep notes on their copies of when and from whom they copied the item, which helps in this process.

In fact this can happen with things which are published also. Some scores we can buy from Mejiro for example, or some other shop, and so anyone can buy them. But some scores can only be bought from certain teachers, and even if they are able to, they are not always willing to sell them to simply anyone. They are meant for "insiders". I have even bought a properly bound hard back book which was published by one of my teachers, but must be bought directly from him. When another of my teachers saw it, he explained that he managed to buy one also, and was proud that he had been considered a "serious" enough shakuhachi player to be accepted to buy the book, and congratulated me that I had also passed! This may sound like a different age, or you may just think it's weird! But one reason in this case may have been due to limited supply, perhaps. I suppose there are many reasons why things are like this, in the end.

Foreigners have quite a bad reputation in Japan. One side of this is that things are shared easily. For example, they often have a perception here that is a recording or notation is given to one foreigner, it is likely that soon everyone will have it. So they can be vary about foreigners for this.

So that is concerning restrictedness. Another problem is if someone teaches or performs saying that they have studied under such-and-such teacher, when they have either not studied, or not studied properly. This seems to have happened quite a lot. Usually if you stay under one teacher, this would not be a problem since most people will respect the teacher, and the teacher is there to keep an eye on you, or even "control" you. However this becomes more complicated if you visit a teacher who is not your main teacher. For example you might visit a teacher once, then claim that you learned 10 pieces perfectly, when actually you only had one lesson on one piece and never played that to the teacher's satisfaction. So, the teacher may feel you are misrepresenting them.

Some teachers would not care. Maybe they would just teach you, and let you do whatever you want with it. But often the teachers do care, especially if you perform or record, or teach. So some teachers are wary about teaching "outsiders".

Then there are some who may just want to keep their styles secret from other schools, and there may be various reasons for that. I don't think that is so positive. If it's a good technique, why would they not want to share it? I mean, if it is musically good, it should be positive to spread, right? There may be occasions also where people are shy to play for players who are technically good, or even may be people who have something to hide which may question their own authenticity or lineage.

All this put together can sometimes put a shroud of mystery over things, or even make things invisible, unknown to the larger shakuhachi community. And sometimes it can be difficult to know what the reason is. So it pays to tread gently. And it is also a good idea to be honest, and also to get permission before sharing things. Doing these will make less chance of accidentally upsetting people.

Very good points and totally justifiable. Us westerners can be rather stupid sometimes. Or, at least me. smile


I was not conscious whether I was riding on the wind or the wind was riding on me.

Lieh-tzu

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