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The Flute Portal Forums _ Free notation and instruction _ Taki Ochi (waterfall) Notation By Sensei Seisui

Posted by: Dean Apr 12 2011, 02:56 AM

Taizan-ha Sensei Seisui open source for those interested in learning the tradition, by kind sincere permission. Newcomers should begin with Hi Fu Mi Cho, Choshi, Hachi Gaeshi, Sanya, then Taki Ochi. This is a beautiful long piece that mirrors the sound of the Asahi waterfall, where enlightening sounds were realized.

In this notation, I've circled the octave changes in red for beginners to notice at a glance the rise and fall of the sound.






http://myoanshakuhachi.blogspot.com/2009/09/asahi-waterfall.html

http://myoanshakuhachi.blogspot.com/2010/05/taki-ochi-revisited.html

Posted by: ChrisK Apr 12 2011, 09:42 AM

Thanks again, Dean. I have bookmarked your blog in my music category. Gracias!

Posted by: x moran Apr 12 2011, 09:37 PM

QUOTE(Dean @ Apr 12 2011, 02:56 AM) *
Taizan-ha Sensei Seisui open source for those interested in learning the tradition, by kind sincere permission. Newcomers should begin with Hi Fu Mi Cho, Choshi, Hachi Gaeshi, Sanya, then Taki Ochi. This is a beautiful long piece that mirrors the sound of the Asahi waterfall, where enlightening sounds were realized.


Good work, Dean.

-- chris

Posted by: gregshaku Apr 14 2011, 02:26 AM

Thanks. Do you have a reference for some of the myoan symbols.

Posted by: x moran Apr 14 2011, 03:31 AM

QUOTE(gregshaku @ Apr 14 2011, 02:26 AM) *
Thanks. Do you have a reference for some of the myoan symbols.


From previous posts on reading Taizan Ha notation:

The first Re in the 1st line is a Tsu-Re, but the second Re in that phrase is just a normal Re note — that could be been written as a simple repetition with a > sign, like in Kinko notation.

Basically, but not always, every time you see a Re starting a phrase in Taizan Ha notation it is always Tsu-Re. Always (almost.)

If the Re is repeated in the notation right after, as in this phrase, it's just a repetition of Re alone.

Here's another Taizan Ha rubric taught to me about Tsu-Re:
Kinko players are taught to play Tsu-Re with a fourth hole grace note blending into the front of Tsu-Re . It gives the Tsu-Re a very dramatic sound. In

Taizan Ha Meian (Myoan) you lift the fourth-hole finger rather slowly and then put the fourth hole finger down softly, BUT, you put no breath behind it — in Taizan Ha Meian Shakuhachi this is a silent note. Then you play Tsu-Re as you normally would. It seems silly to have a note played silently but it does have an effect of calmly boosting the air flow so the Tsu of the Tsu-Re is smoother than just starting off on the Tsu. No big drama in the sound.

Taizan Ha players can play or teach very differently but if you want to learn the way Yoshimura plays, notice how everything is understated. Very little drama or strain. Almost bland. It's very subtle and softer than Kinko, or Yokoyama-style, or Watazumi-style, or Chikuho or what is referred to as Myoan Shinpo Ryu. It's not better, it's not worse, it's just different. Even then, different players can teach differently. Taizan Ha and other Myoan (Meian) branches are not strictly speaking on a Ryu system. They are more like a loosely knit group, or federation at best.

Yoshimura's music (and that of one of his preceding Myoan-ji abbots, Tanikita Muchiku) is very quiet and calm music designed to be played in a temple compared to the more modern schools which are designed for the performance stage. My teacher says to play as though you are in a room sitting next to a sick person who is lying down trying to rest and heal. But that is never a rule, only a preference.

You still have to maintain enough pressure and volume to play up to the pitch your flute was designed to make. Good pressure, good embrouchure, excellent-as-possible pitch, but not blasting volume.


The Taizan Ha music as taught by Yoshimura and Tanikita is usually taught on a 1.8 instrument. The pitch is D or somewhat lower. Jinashi 1.8's are usually lower than D, sometimes as deep as a 1.9 (C#). But this, again, is not for everyone. All of my references in pitch are relative to a 1.8 instrument pitched in D at A440. Yoshimura and Tanikita recordings are all 1.8, pitched lower, sometimes significantly lower than the modern D ji-ari instruments.

--The last phrase in the first line of the Taizan Ha Myoan Choshi — the note that repeats three times is called Ha it is exactly the same note as "Ri" in Kinko, played with 1, 2 and 5 closed —3 and 4 are open and your head position will probably want to be slightly karu (slightly cocked up) to achieve proper pitch.

--Fifth hole note in Taizan Ha is called Hi, played with 1 and 2 closed, 3,4,5 open. Again your head position will probably want to be slightly karu.

--The notation that Dean has is slightly different from the notation I have, so bear with me here:

When Tsu is played alone, , anytime you see a plain old regular Tsu in Taizan Ha notation, it is really played like a Kinko or Tozan Tsu-meri — head down, finger covering half of the #1 hole, It is played deeper than the Kinko "Tsu-chu-meri"*. The pitch is about Eb, slightly lower than Eb is fine too. (You''ll have to remember to play your Ro with your head up Kari in order to play in pitch after playing a Taizan Tsu.)

I see that the Kobayshi notation occasionally uses a Tsu with a tiny hash-mark through the far-left stroke. This probably indicates that the Tsu is played as flat as or flatter than the standard Tsu-meri pitch of Eb. It also means the note is played more quietly and subtly and with more finger coverage. (As I said, this notation is a little different than mine).

-- When you see a little Kari notation next to a Tsu (usually to the left of the note) it means to play the Tsu in normal position, head straight and no hovering over or covering the Tsu hole at all. Just a straight non-flatted Tsu pitch of F#.

You really do need a face-to-face teacher, and a REAL teacher with this stuff, but these little tips might help you decode what you're reading and match it up better to what you're hearing.

More later.

Posted by: gregshaku Apr 14 2011, 07:41 AM

Wow. Thanks again. Yes, every school has its own way and a teahcer is the only way. Very informative.

Posted by: Dean Apr 14 2011, 09:06 AM

About tsu-re, when Mori-san demonstrates this, he calls it a wedge, that the re is stronger with what I call a see-saw tsu. Mori also likes to describe it with the onomotopoeiac word "pit tongg", and likens the sound to leverage. Fingers are XIOXXO then move to XIXXOO, left index goes down and pops the right index off the flute to form an abrupt re note with some slight wedge leverage anticipation. (X=finger down, O is open hole, for example XIXXXX = Ro, holes are 5I4321, with the I separating back thumhole and front 4 holes.)

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