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#1 2006-05-03 14:26:59

dstone
Member
From: Vancouver, Canada
Registered: 2006-01-11
Posts: 552
Website

On tuning, temperaments, and between-the-tones

I didn't want to pollute the original thread, so I'll continue my inquiry here...

Tairaku wrote:

Equal temperament can't be the implied tuning because when Japanese music originated they didn't know about it.

Fair enough.  I'll buy that.  Recalculating what I thought was true before, I think there could actually be a good 10 or more cents difference between Just and Equal now for certain intervals.  This would be very audible, so it seems the targetted tuning system is significant, even for a beginner. 

Tairaku wrote:

Basically all the kari notes are the same pitches we use and all of the meri notes waver, but usually are about a quarter tone above the next lowest note. In other words tsu meri is about a quarter tone above ro. Of course these rules go out the window when playing shinkyoku.

Good to know.  I was taking tsu meri to be a half tone above ro; sharper than what you suggest.  Just so we're talking the same language, here are the assumptions I've been working under...  ro and tsu are 3 semis apart and here are the pitch equivalents at each semitone step down...
3. http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/tsu.gif tsu
2. http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/tsu_han_on.gif "tsu han on" or "tsu chu meri"
1. http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/tsu_meri.gif "tsu meri"
0. http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/ro.gif ro = "tsu dai meri" (in pitch)

So completely independent of tuning system used...  am I wrong to believe that meri notes fall onto a twelve-tone scale?  (Tuned Just or Equal or otherwise.)

Related questions...
In pitch, does tsu http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/tsu.gif = re dai meri http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/re_dai_meri.gif?
In pitch, does re http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/re.gif = u dai meri http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/u_dai_meri.gif?

Thanks for the patience and any corrections!

-Darren.


When it is rainy, I am in the rain. When it is windy, I am in the wind.  - Mitsuo Aida

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#2 2006-05-03 14:40:37

Tairaku 太楽
Administrator/Performer
From: Tasmania
Registered: 2005-10-07
Posts: 3225
Website

Re: On tuning, temperaments, and between-the-tones

dstone wrote:

Tairaku wrote:

Equal temperament can't be the implied tuning because when Japanese music originated they didn't know about it.

Fair enough.  I'll buy that.  Recalculating what I thought was true before, I think there could actually be a good 10 or more cents difference between Just and Equal now for certain intervals.  This would be very audible, so it seems the targetted tuning system is significant, even for a beginner.

The microtones and slightly undefined pitches (because meri notes are always played with vibrato) are some of the things that make it sound "Japanese" to outsiders. Think of how it sounded to you before you played shakuhachi.

dstone wrote:

Tairaku wrote:

Basically all the kari notes are the same pitches we use and all of the meri notes waver, but usually are about a quarter tone above the next lowest note. In other words tsu meri is about a quarter tone above ro. Of course these rules go out the window when playing shinkyoku.

Good to know.  I was taking tsu meri to be a half tone above ro; sharper than what you suggest.  Just so we're talking the same language, here are the assumptions I've been working under...  ro and tsu are 3 semis apart and here are the pitch equivalents at each semitone step down...
3. http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/tsu.gif tsu
2. http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/tsu_han_on.gif "tsu han on" or "tsu chu meri"
1. http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/tsu_meri.gif "tsu meri"
0. http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/ro.gif ro = "tsu dai meri" (in pitch)

So completely independent of tuning system used...  am I wrong to believe that meri notes fall onto a twelve-tone scale?  (Tuned Just or Equal or otherwise.)

I think that's correct. My observation is that ro, tsu chu meri and tsu are objective pitches, most people play them the same. But tsu meri is pitched different ways by different players and in different contexts. Whether it's "right" or "wrong" I don't know how to define. Every time I have tuned to a koto player for sankyoku the notes they use which correlate to our meri notes are much less than a half step.

dstone wrote:

Related questions...
In pitch, does tsu http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/tsu.gif = re dai meri http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/re_dai_meri.gif?
In pitch, does re http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/re.gif = u dai meri http://bitmason.com/shaku/pitch/img/u_dai_meri.gif?

Thanks for the patience and any corrections!

-Darren.

As far as I know yes re dai meri and tsu are the same pitch (although one teacher told me re dai meri is a tad LOWER than tsu) and u dai meri is the same pitch as re. That's how you check if you are getting low enough on U dai meri, compare it to re.


'Progress means simplifying, not complicating' : Bruno Munari

http://www.myspace.com/tairakubrianritchie

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#3 2006-05-03 14:53:31

dstone
Member
From: Vancouver, Canada
Registered: 2006-01-11
Posts: 552
Website

Re: On tuning, temperaments, and between-the-tones

Great answers, Brian.  Thank you very much.  I especially like your idea of "... the things that make it sound "Japanese" to outsiders. Think of how it sounded to you before you played shakuhachi."  That's a hard thing to put my finger on, but worth pondering...  smile

I'm at the stage of my practice right now that might be premature to work on the meri vibrato.  Just getting thru pieces roughly in tune and internalizing them to play from memory/feeling is really what I'm digging.

And congrats on that Bass Player coverage I saw the other day.

-Darren.


When it is rainy, I am in the rain. When it is windy, I am in the wind.  - Mitsuo Aida

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#4 2006-05-03 20:45:58

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

Re: On tuning, temperaments, and between-the-tones

Just to whip things into a fine, frothy lather:

This from Masayuki Koga:

       "Before you play Honkyoku, you must know [that] there are five kinds of distinct tones in each note.
       Then you must know the relationship   among the notes. There are twelve semitones in each octave,
       therefore there are sixty kinds of notes in one octave.

       Because of this complexity I do not teach Honkyoku to beginners."

eB


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

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#5 2006-05-03 21:41:16

dstone
Member
From: Vancouver, Canada
Registered: 2006-01-11
Posts: 552
Website

Re: On tuning, temperaments, and between-the-tones

Oh great, Ed!  Smash my honkyoku confidence to bits, why don't you!  wink 

Just kidding.  Thanks for the quote.

-Darren.


When it is rainy, I am in the rain. When it is windy, I am in the wind.  - Mitsuo Aida

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#6 2006-05-04 01:50:37

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

Re: On tuning, temperaments, and between-the-tones

Tairaku wrote:

... Every time I have tuned to a koto player for sankyoku the notes they use which correlate to our meri notes are much less than a half step.

Being a rather dense student, do you mean flatter or sharper than half a step concerning meri notes? I assume you mean flatter than half a step from your post, but I want to get this clear in my head.

Also, after finally having listened to Meian (Myoan) masters Tanikita Muchiku Roan and Yoshimura Soshin Fuan I'm struck by the impression that their meri notes sound sharper than the Kinko and Dokyoku players who I normally listen to ... particularly U and kan-Chi-meri. Also their Tsu-meri in otsu and kan.


"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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#7 2006-05-04 02:55:26

Tairaku 太楽
Administrator/Performer
From: Tasmania
Registered: 2005-10-07
Posts: 3225
Website

Re: On tuning, temperaments, and between-the-tones

Chris Moran wrote:

Tairaku wrote:

... Every time I have tuned to a koto player for sankyoku the notes they use which correlate to our meri notes are much less than a half step.

Being a rather dense student, do you mean flatter or sharper than half a step concerning meri notes? I assume you mean flatter than half a step from your post, but I want to get this clear in my head.

Also, after finally having listened to Meian (Myoan) masters Tanikita Muchiku Roan and Yoshimura Soshin Fuan I'm struck by the impression that their meri notes sound sharper than the Kinko and Dokyoku players who I normally listen to ... particularly U and kan-Chi-meri. Also their Tsu-meri in otsu and kan.

Flatter than the Western pitch we associate with the meri note.

And yes there is quite a range between players and styles. I think there was an article in Hogaku Journal where someone charted out several players' meri notes.


'Progress means simplifying, not complicating' : Bruno Munari

http://www.myspace.com/tairakubrianritchie

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#8 2006-10-18 11:44:35

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

Re: On tuning, temperaments, and between-the-tones

Hi everyone,

I have a question regarding notations. What is the difference between Ro and Fu? I know that they are different octave, but I am not sure what I am looking at. Thank you.

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#9 2006-10-18 14:24:52

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

Re: On tuning, temperaments, and between-the-tones

edosan wrote:

Just to whip things into a fine, frothy lather:

This from Masayuki Koga:

       "Before you play Honkyoku, you must know [that] there are five kinds of distinct tones in each note.
       Then you must know the relationship   among the notes. There are twelve semitones in each octave,
       therefore there are sixty kinds of notes in one octave.

       Because of this complexity I do not teach Honkyoku to beginners."

eB

That's quite exciting Ed.

Kel   


Kia Kaha !

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