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Tube of delight!

#26 2010-03-16 11:50:23

madoherty
Moderator
Registered: 2008-03-15
Posts: 366

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

Shakuhachi is an oral tradition.  Oral traditions are unique in both their vibrancy as well as there longevity.  Learning from a person - in an organic and analog environment - is not the same as looking at a video, or reading digitized text.  I am convinced that humans learn and process information best in organic ways, environments, and encounters.  So much more the case with an oral tradition.  Recordings are stagnant - capture a moment that has passed.  Recordings have a sense of authority in part because they remain unchanged (though will degrade significantly- and more so with more technologically "advanced" recording solutions).  We like to think that they are the rule, the authority.  They can be dissected and analyzed, but is what is analyzed the "thing" we were studying anymore?  With a living tradition, the answer is "only part".  We can learn something in particular, but the context is lost.  When it is the context that gives meaning and significance to a technique, as is the case in traditional art forms, codified moments lose their depth.

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#27 2010-03-16 12:41:43

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

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

edosan wrote:

And unless you have someone to show you how to do it, it's pretty much useless...

       JUST SAYIN'

I guess your right, Ed. It wouldn't be of much use to someone unless you already knew the techniques involved.  Mike, I think pursuit of shakuhachi involves a lot of reaching. Things won't get served up to you in the nice little package you are looking for.


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

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#28 2010-03-16 13:09:30

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

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

Jim Thompson wrote:

Things won't get served up to you in the nice little package you are looking for.

smile

Good analogy.

Learning shakuhachi is like going out, locating a wild boar, chasing it, grabbing it by the tusks, wrestling it to the ground, head butting it, twisting its neck until it breaks, ripping the skin off with your fingernails, plunging your teeth into the guts and munching on the raw liver.

Not like walking to the corner bodega and buying a styrofoam and plastic wrapped pile of ground beef.


'Progress means simplifying, not complicating' : Bruno Munari

http://www.myspace.com/tairakubrianritchie

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#29 2010-03-16 13:14:44

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

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

Kind of like the true meaning of life. smile  (ok, too corny).

Last edited by purehappiness (2010-03-16 13:18:32)


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

Lieh-tzu

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#30 2010-03-16 13:55:46

John
Member
From: Minneapolis, MN
Registered: 2010-01-13
Posts: 18
Website

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

Jim Thompson wrote:

edosan wrote:

And unless you have someone to show you how to do it, it's pretty much useless...

       JUST SAYIN'

I guess your right, Ed. It wouldn't be of much use to someone unless you already knew the techniques involved.  Mike, I think pursuit of shakuhachi involves a lot of reaching. Things won't get served up to you in the nice little package you are looking for.

"Some but not all" as the late Robert Anton Wilson said...  Despite all the good points about oral traditions and the need for one on one guidance, I'm pretty sure that when experienced players listen to recordings or the Box Sets with scores, there is in no small part a desire to preserve and to learn from these things, despite the inherant limitations of any media.

Who wouldn't love to see videos from the lost 17th century.  I'm quite certain if we had videos of the classic maters teaching or performing, they would be considered priceless treasures.

To think future students would be better off without video recordings doesn't say much for the faith we have in future generations to apply themselves diligently.  There are probably stories of students who sat outside the masters studio and learned only by hearing through the walls.  If there aren't such stories, we might invent them as examples of students who overcame much greater obsticals than trying to manage learning from videos of masters. :-)


"The more necessary anything appears to my mind, the more certain it is that I only assert a limitation." ~ The Book of Lies, Ch. 45 "Chinese Music"

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#31 2010-03-16 15:59:05

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

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

Eventually we will be able to walk into a virtual reality room and take a lesson with Jin Nyodo or Watazumi! smile

Until then we should take lessons with living people. roll


'Progress means simplifying, not complicating' : Bruno Munari

http://www.myspace.com/tairakubrianritchie

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#32 2010-03-16 21:27:40

Mike Raftery
Member
From: San Francisco
Registered: 2008-10-25
Posts: 44

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

I would certainly purchase any classes that you are teaching, Perry.  I don't think it would be fair either, not to charge  You should charge.  But it seems like these are not available for purchase yet. You are still in the planning process?   Any other members interested in purchasing instruction videos? Might give other people ideas..And Perry, I have to sharpen my RI too.  Chin up?

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#33 2010-03-16 22:20:42

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

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

Mike Raftery wrote:

Can you attempt to describe what is being taught in one to one, it is a non-verbal teaching? Something being transmitted mind to mind.  Is it a zen thing?

Hi Mike
Have you never had a music lesson? Rather than spend so much time asking about what it's like, why don't you just take a lesson with someone? It would take a lot less time and would then be your experience rather than others' reports of the experience, not to mention that you would be learning shakuhachi in the process.

To answer your question of what is in a lesson that isn't in a video, the simple answer is "interaction". The purpose of a teacher is to guide the student. And in order to guide a student the teacher needs to hear the student. That should be quite simple to accept. No video can listen to you, know what you are doing wrong and why, and then give you the personal instruction in accordance with that. There's nothing particularly mysterious about that. The teacher's job is not simply teaching with no regard for the individual student as a video would do, but to listen to the student and guide him step by step through his personal progress towards or beyond the level of the teacher.

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#34 2010-03-16 22:54:29

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

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

Has anybody noticed that the people who know how to play think lessons are a good idea, and the people who don't know how to play think they are not necessary? Wonder why? roll


'Progress means simplifying, not complicating' : Bruno Munari

http://www.myspace.com/tairakubrianritchie

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#35 2010-03-17 00:22:54

geni
Performer & Teacher
From: Boston MA
Registered: 2005-12-21
Posts: 830
Website

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

A good teacher is priceless.A bad teacher $ 50;-)

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#36 2010-03-17 12:04:04

Yungflutes
Flutemaker/Performer
From: New York City
Registered: 2005-10-08
Posts: 1061
Website

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

Mike Raftery wrote:

I would certainly purchase any classes that you are teaching, Perry.  I don't think it would be fair either, not to charge  You should charge.  But it seems like these are not available for purchase yet. You are still in the planning process?   Any other members interested in purchasing instruction videos? Might give other people ideas..And Perry, I have to sharpen my RI too.  Chin up?

Hi Mike, Thanks for your input. and yes, Chin up!

Although I offer a free lesson to buyers of my instruments, I normally charge for lessons after. My dilemma is whether I should make public video lessons that were paid for by students.

If you want to try an mp3 /video lesson, you can contact me through my email. However, since you are in San Francisco, I recommend that you take a face to face lesson with my brother's teacher, Masayuki Koga - http://www.jmia.org/

If you want to play serious shakuhachi music, a relationship with a teacher is a must. However, I do understand the value of video or recorded tutorials. I recently had a new student cancel our first meet three weeks in a row. When he finally arrived, he apologized profusely. He was nervous about about a face to face lesson.

We are at a unique time in history where communication technology has eclipse nearly every other aspect of societal development. We all know that nothing beats live human contact, especially in the transmission of a cultural art form. But, we should not be afraid of what the future may offer. We should, in fact embrace it. I say, Yes, we can smile

Last edited by Yungflutes (2010-03-17 12:50:49)


"A hot dog is not an animal." - Jet Yung

My Blog/Website on the art of shakuhachi...and parenting.
How to make an Urban Shakuhachi (PVC)

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#37 2010-03-17 16:47:22

Vevolis
Member
From: Toronto, ON
Registered: 2007-12-24
Posts: 175
Website

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

I think the ability to upload lessons publicly should be at the discretion of the student. I've only had two formal lessons with a teacher, it is an excellent learning experience though there is absolutely no way I could afford taking one single lesson every month.

I'm going the eclectic route. If there's a seminar nearby, I'll attend. If there's a reasonable online lesson I'll take it. If there's a birthday coming up, I'll buy a lesson.

I don't think distance lessons necessarily cheapens the learning experience. I don't think the word 'cheapen' should apply in the first place. It's very hard... and sometimes you need to make due. Down the street I can get nearly 4 piano lessons during my lunch breaks for the price of 1 Shakuhachi lesson which I'd have to take transit downtown to do it.

That being said, in terms of preserving teachings this would label me & many others a hobbyist. One day, I hope to be a really good hobbyist.

In poverty comes craftiness.

... although i suppose it doesn't really preserve a whole lot of cultural relevance. I'm stumped.

Last edited by Vevolis (2010-03-17 16:58:10)

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#38 2010-03-17 18:46:06

John
Member
From: Minneapolis, MN
Registered: 2010-01-13
Posts: 18
Website

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

It's kind of dawned on me that when I originally posed the question in this thread, I was falling into a common sort of trap when I start something new.  Something along the lines of "hey if I'm into this great new thing, so must everyone else be if they only had the chance!" and so, given my odd need to spread the joy, how will we serve the waiting masses? etc..

I think the reality is something more like "gee, practically no one is really into this"

... in which case - we're incredibly lucky!  :-) This community is tiny, even on this forum we seem to have a significant percentage the professional level english speaking players and teachers.  It's like joining a "guitar" forum and trading tips with the Beatles or something.  (daing myself here...)   Oh, and not only that, the Beatles are offering personal lessons!? 

These generous people had to fly to Japan who knows where, spend huge amounts of time and money to learn an obscure, nearly dying art and they are willing to sit down in front of a skype connection one on one and teach us students...

I'm GLAD they aren't saying "Just go watch those videos and come back in three or four years."  They could ...

But I think we've kind of vered off topic, preserving the teachings of the masters for the ages is really beyond the topic of cheap or free video lessons.  Maybe the best place for those teachings to be stored is in the hearts and minds of the next generation of students.

Last edited by John (2010-03-17 18:54:13)


"The more necessary anything appears to my mind, the more certain it is that I only assert a limitation." ~ The Book of Lies, Ch. 45 "Chinese Music"

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#39 2010-03-17 19:58:03

radi0gnome
Member
From: Kingston NY
Registered: 2006-12-29
Posts: 1030
Website

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

Yungflutes wrote:

Although I offer a free lesson to buyers of my instruments, I normally charge for lessons after. My dilemma is whether I should make public video lessons that were paid for by students.

How about a shakuhachi master class video? The students audition by sending in performances to be critiqued knowing they may be used for teaching purposes, of course at a discounted price from individual lessons. The teacher can then select the videos or audio recordings to critique according to what points he wishes to convey. It would make for a very nice teaching video. It would be a lot of editting and more work than just throwing some some private lesson material up for public viewing, but the results should be worth the effort and if put up for sale as a teaching DVD would probably recoup production costs in a reasonable amount of time.


"Now birds record new harmonie, And trees do whistle melodies;
Now everything that nature breeds, Doth clad itself in pleasant weeds."
~ Thomas Watson - England's Helicon ca 1580

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#40 2010-03-17 21:10:41

edosan
Edomologist
From: Salt Lake City
Registered: 2005-10-09
Posts: 2185

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

radi0gnome wrote:

How about a shakuhachi master class video?

Stricly speaking, master classes aren't really about teaching, but about refining the skills and musical ideas of already accomplished players.

Furthermore, stop and consider for a nanosecond how much you'd have to pay a master shakuhachi player to put in that kind of time.

Can we just move on from this endless, useless thread?

Last edited by edosan (2010-03-17 21:12:56)


Zen is not easy.
It takes effort to attain nothingness.
And then what do you have?
Bupkes.

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#41 2010-03-17 21:17:58

radi0gnome
Member
From: Kingston NY
Registered: 2006-12-29
Posts: 1030
Website

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

edosan wrote:

Can we just move on from this endless, useless thread?

No.


"Now birds record new harmonie, And trees do whistle melodies;
Now everything that nature breeds, Doth clad itself in pleasant weeds."
~ Thomas Watson - England's Helicon ca 1580

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#42 2010-03-17 22:22:44

Priapus Le Zen M☮nk
Historical Zen Mod
From: St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada
Registered: 2006-04-25
Posts: 612
Website

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

edosan wrote:

radi0gnome wrote:

How about a shakuhachi master class video?

Can we just move on from this endless, useless thread?

Hell yes! Man what is so freaking hard to understand.

#1 Buy a flute then suck at it
#2 Get a teacher live or now newbies should consider themselves damm lucky we have the online thing as well.
#3 Suck less for X amount of years and still take lessons
#4 Accept where you wanna go with this either full pro or serious player for personal enjoyment.

I really don't get it why make videos etc etc what is it now people need to be spoonfed? Like buying flutes you get what you pay for the same thing goes for playing and getting a teacher you get what you invest into as far as time energy and $.

I started playing when you either had a teacher near or you got one in Japan or once or twice a year took classes when a teacher came to visit seeing so many doing mental masturbation is just a real waste of bandwidth.

Now lets get back to what video was really meant to be PORN! well youtube porn that is hahahah!

http://www.youtube.com/user/jonlajoie#p … xp3zqIqO68


Sebastien 義真 Cyr
春風館道場 Shunpukan Dojo
St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada
http://www.myspace.com/shunpukandojo

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#43 2010-03-18 02:39:10

Karmajampa
Member
From: Aotearoa (NZ)
Registered: 2006-02-12
Posts: 574
Website

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

Riley Lee will soon be announcing the release of DVD's from the 2008 Sydney World shakuhachi Festival, they should contain several Master Classes, go buy them.

K


Kia Kaha !

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#44 2010-03-18 09:38:56

geni
Performer & Teacher
From: Boston MA
Registered: 2005-12-21
Posts: 830
Website

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

Looking forward to that! Any release dates?

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#45 2010-03-18 14:37:52

Karmajampa
Member
From: Aotearoa (NZ)
Registered: 2006-02-12
Posts: 574
Website

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

geni wrote:

Looking forward to that! Any release dates?

Recent email suggested not too far away, but no specific release date.

K.


Kia Kaha !

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#46 2010-03-18 15:54:41

edosan
Edomologist
From: Salt Lake City
Registered: 2005-10-09
Posts: 2185

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

A Master Class:

       http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nEuVvSKN__I


Zen is not easy.
It takes effort to attain nothingness.
And then what do you have?
Bupkes.

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#47 2010-03-19 00:56:08

Yungflutes
Flutemaker/Performer
From: New York City
Registered: 2005-10-08
Posts: 1061
Website

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

John wrote:

... in which case - we're incredibly lucky!  :-) This community is tiny, even on this forum we seem to have a significant percentage the professional level english speaking players and teachers.  It's like joining a "guitar" forum and trading tips with the Beatles or something.  (daing myself here...)   Oh, and not only that, the Beatles are offering personal lessons!?

Hi John, Sorry for hijacking your thread. Good analogy though! I have co opted John and Yoko's "Make shakuhachi not war" many times for my shakuhachi making workshops smile

Jon wrote:

Yungflutes wrote:

I do understand the value of video or recorded tutorials. I recently had a new student cancel our first meet three weeks in a row. When he finally arrived, he apologized profusely. He was nervous about about a face to face lesson.
We are at a unique time in history where communication technology has eclipse nearly every other aspect of societal development. We all know that nothing beats live human contact, especially in the transmission of a cultural art form. But, we should not be afraid of what the future may offer. We should, in fact embrace it. I say, Yes, we can smile

I don't think anyone that has spoken here is afraid of what the future has to offer. In the special case of your shy student I am sure any of the teachers who instruct via the web like Michael or my teacher Ronnie would be more than happy to accommodate anyone's needs, as well.

Anyone's needs? There's a lot of different folks out there with different needs.

This student was not a special case. He was just nervous. I have however, had a few memorable special cases. These made me aware of the need for making the experience of the shakuhachi more easily accessible for anyone who is interested.

Shortly after we relocated to Northampton, MA for my partner's grad work in 2006, I received a phone call from an Australian chap visiting New York for a conference. He said he'd been wanting to meet me for several years. When I told him we had just moved two hours away, he sounded quite distraught. I suggested he wait for the weekend as my partner could have the kids and I could drive in to the city, but his flight was leaving Friday. I said sorry, I just couldn't get away in the middle of the week. Then, a day later he sent a short email saying he would like to come to Northampton for the lesson and inquired about public transportation options. So I sent him some bus and train info. He then called with more logistical questions as he would need to travel with an assistant and would also have to spend the night. It was getting quite complicated (and expensive) for this chap to take a lesson with me. Over the next two days it occurred to me that he was calling quite a bit with questions that simple Googling would answer - where to stay, how to get from the hotel to my place, can he get a return bus directly back to the airport etc... Eventually, I said, "It would be best to rent a car." ...there was silence...then the chap said, "My assistant can not drive...well, me neither. You see, I'm blind. My heart skipped a beat. (It turned out his conference was on voice activated internet software for the vision impaired). Then, I said, "Uh, let me get back to you."  When I mentioned this to my partner, I saw it in her eyes before the words left her lips, "Get your ass in the mini van and drive to New York!".

The other memorable case, and I'll make this one short, was with a guy who could not get up to my second floor walk-up. He was wheelchair bound. He offered to come all the way from Queens by car service but we would have to sit in the park. I went to his place. We still meet.

However, offering free or purchasable pre-recorded video lessons openly to everyone is a different matter all together.

As I said, my dilemma is in sharing, not selling, the videos I made for my student. I have decided that my students can have access to all the videos. But, if you search Japanese Youtube, you can see video demonstrations for shakuhachi, including how to make. All free. I personally do not see a problem with any of this.

Last edited by Yungflutes (2010-03-19 01:04:01)


"A hot dog is not an animal." - Jet Yung

My Blog/Website on the art of shakuhachi...and parenting.
How to make an Urban Shakuhachi (PVC)

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#48 2010-04-03 22:56:21

edosan
Edomologist
From: Salt Lake City
Registered: 2005-10-09
Posts: 2185

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

Jon wrote:

I don't need to be reassured of the good things you have done for people. I think most of the community sees you as a nice individual. However I don't understand why these instances justify teaching indiscriminately with prerecorded video? Or rather how they related to the question of prerecorded video as a suitable main method of teaching shakuhachi. Or to the issue of students having access to various lessons at will.

FWIW: I agree.


Zen is not easy.
It takes effort to attain nothingness.
And then what do you have?
Bupkes.

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#49 2010-04-16 12:30:21

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

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

The best things in life are free?Doesn't money always wind up corrupting things somehow? Just a thought.

Last edited by purehappiness (2010-04-16 12:34:03)


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

Lieh-tzu

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#50 2010-04-16 12:54:52

radi0gnome
Member
From: Kingston NY
Registered: 2006-12-29
Posts: 1030
Website

Re: Preserving teachings in the age of Youtube

Jon wrote:

However I don't understand why these instances justify teaching indiscriminately with prerecorded video?

I've started taking video lessons from Perry and they aren't pre-recorded. He personally records a video addressing things he hears in the student's recording. There are both advantages and disadvantages to this method. One of the advantages I enjoy is that it is much more relaxed than real-time lessons in that I don't have to reserve a good chunk of time for a real-time lesson. With Skype lessons, I had to reserve not only the lesson time in advance, but I also had to reserve some time before the lesson for warmup. I couldn't schedule much else on lesson days. This way I can choose to record the lesson materials on a day when I'm sounding my best, and I don't have to "waste" a lesson just because it's an off day for me. Another plus is that I can watch the video lesson as many times as I want, I don't have to wait until next week (that's assuming weekly lessons) to refresh my memory on anything I forgot that was said in the lesson.

I don't see any problem with this method of teaching. For students who need a lot of hand-holding it's obviously not a good alternative, and live lessons have the distinct advantage of immediate criticism. However, this method works for me, one lesson and my playing has improved (to be fair I can say the same from the free lesson I got from Chikuzen).

I think Ronnie Selden offers lessons with a similar format, and has been for decades via cassette and postal service with great success.

I don't think many would argue that live lessons are better with Skype lessons being a close second. But for a lot of people those options are either impossible or inconvenient. If it weren't for this video format it would be back to teaching books and CD's for me and there are very few of those that teach honkyoku and they are far from being as good as the video lessons.

Unless you want to say a student should just give it up if they can't get live or Skype lessons to work with their lives, there's a place for teaching in these alternative formats, including books and CD's. Pre-recorded videos would be the next best thing to books and CD's, and the individually recorded videos, like what Perry is doing, is another step in the right direction.


"Now birds record new harmonie, And trees do whistle melodies;
Now everything that nature breeds, Doth clad itself in pleasant weeds."
~ Thomas Watson - England's Helicon ca 1580

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