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Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao)

 
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meoweth
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PostPosted: 2013-09-14, 10:36    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

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Hi guys, I'm playing the dongxiao made by Winson, and it's got a shakuhachi mouthpiece (but at a different angle so you hold it lower).
Winson has been teaching me and one of the things he said was to move the lower jaw left and right to create a "gradient direction"

See video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B6TpnbnNVHY

I'm not sure what this jaw movement is actually accomplishing in terms of musical change, can anyone enlighten me on this?
My guess is that he does it for pitch bends.
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Kiku Day
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PostPosted: 2013-10-05, 16:20    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

Some people use jaw movements... but I must admit I don't know for what reason.
In shakuhachi the most used is head movements. You can for example move your head a bit to the side when you are ending a prolonged note by fading out. Then the hole open of the top of the shakuhachi will be bigger and you won't drop so much in pitch. So for pitch control.

Jaw movements are more personal techniques. I don't know what they can be used for. Hopefully a player who uses jaw movements will enlighten us one day.

Razz
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kongwee
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PostPosted: 2013-10-15, 08:51    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

For bamboo flute, I move jaw because of intonation. But left and right, I never done it before.
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RimBlown
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PostPosted: 2013-10-31, 13:51    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

You'll notice that in this particular video he is using a notched flute and not a Tang style edge. Depending on notch style, depth and width, shakuachi meri/peri movements are too large. I play many different notched flutes and meri/peri is not as effective as Winson's movements with a notch. Like everything, it takes practice.

That being said, Winson also has video's of him playing a Tang style edge and he uses his lip movements with great effect.

Remember Xiao's have much smaller bores than the shakuhachi although I do not have one of Winson's but will soon. But I imagine a smaller bore might benefit from the micro movements of the lips.

The only way to know is to experiment. Winson is a very open guy and can answer your questions.
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kongwee
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PostPosted: 2013-11-02, 12:29    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

RimBlown wrote:


Remember Xiao's have much smaller bores than the shakuhachi although I do not have one of Winson's but will soon. But I imagine a smaller bore might benefit from the micro movements of the lips.



Concert Xiao is much thinner and will play a lot of fast fingering pieces. Root End Xiao is not commonly used.
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Perry Yung
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PostPosted: 2013-11-03, 19:14    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

kongwee wrote:
RimBlown wrote:


Remember Xiao's have much smaller bores than the shakuhachi although I do not have one of Winson's but will soon. But I imagine a smaller bore might benefit from the micro movements of the lips.



Concert Xiao is much thinner and will play a lot of fast fingering pieces. Root End Xiao is not commonly used.


HI Kongwee, good to see you here on the forum.

I understand that the root end xiao is relatively new as an instrument, unlike the root end shakuhachi. Do you know if it is used by pros other than Winston?
- Perry
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kongwee
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PostPosted: 2013-11-04, 07:25    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

Perry Yung wrote:
kongwee wrote:
RimBlown wrote:


Remember Xiao's have much smaller bores than the shakuhachi although I do not have one of Winson's but will soon. But I imagine a smaller bore might benefit from the micro movements of the lips.



Concert Xiao is much thinner and will play a lot of fast fingering pieces. Root End Xiao is not commonly used.


HI Kongwee, good to see you here on the forum.

I understand that the root end xiao is relatively new as an instrument, unlike the root end shakuhachi. Do you know if it is used by pros other than Winston?
- Perry


Hello Perry,

I go here for some info. Very Happy
Concert root end Xiao is not commonly found. I do see them sometime. In chinese orchestra setting, it is more about the pitch and even dynamics on the notes. To have a root end Xiao is kind of bonus. I don't own a pro Xiao. I do play some of my teacher's one in the past. A very good Xiao is very hard to come by. My teachers often go to the maker to pick one. Sometime he has none during his trip. For chiba or shakuhachi, don't have any contact with pro maker or touch a pro ones.

My former Dizi instructor playing Concert Xiao:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P8CBPA0dnzs
Winson recently made root end Concert Xiao:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3bE0Tr_X_80


Last edited by kongwee on 2013-11-04, 15:02; edited 1 time in total
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RimBlown
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PostPosted: 2013-11-04, 13:06    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

My guess is that Perry might be correct that the root end xiao might be a more recent instrument but I'm looking into it. Not alot of information in English, or Chinese. My speculation is that you don't find it in China, and I've looked and looked, because it is a hybrid and a result of the interaction between Japan and Taiwan. You find the word shakuhachi and xiao used interchangeably around Taiwan. In Taiwan, there are shakuhachi socieites with people playing 8 hole instruments. And some of my bamboo Xiao's from Taiwan have bore's as big as my shakuhachi's which is very unxiao like. Some of my long Xiao's from mainland China are actually more difficult to play fast. Although the bore is narrow, the finger spacing is further apart depending on the maker.

And I know that Winson definitely went to Japan to research the Shakuhachi and fine tunes his instruments by hand including his wooden ones. He probably wouldn't have had to go to Japan if there was a long lineage of these type of flutes in the Chinese tradition. He definitely has some very well thought out philosophies on playing and technique.

Again, I don't know but the lack of these flutes in China tells me they either went extinct or all the fuzhonese took them all to Taiwan when they left Main land. Ok probably not. I like the Japanese influence theory better.

My apologies for the hard landing and just coming onto the shakuhachi forum and chiming in without any sort of introduction. Generally, I'm part of the statistical 80% that reads and doesn't participate. Lurker alert! Actually, I don't lurk that much because I'm too busy playing flutes and cooking for my wife and only occasionally swing by. I play any flute with a rim or a notch and occasionally will play a flute that is held sideways and I try to not poke anybodies eye out.

I live in New York City and my favorite ice cream flavor has yet to be determined. But if pressed for an answer I'd have to go with Butter Pecan.


Last edited by RimBlown on 2013-11-04, 13:38; edited 1 time in total
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RimBlown
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PostPosted: 2013-11-04, 13:25    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

Some more evidence of some kind of cross breeding. And lots of cheek puffing. Very un-Xiao-i for a Xiao.

http://www.microsofttranslator.com/bv.aspx?from=&to=en&a=http://v.y…
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kongwee
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PostPosted: 2013-11-04, 14:21    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

RimBlown wrote:
Some more evidence of some kind of cross breeding. And lots of cheek puffing. Very un-Xiao-i for a Xiao.

http://www.microsofttranslator.com/bv.aspx?from=&to=en&a=http://v.y…


After 0:07 , this is staccato technique. I learn this in Dizi. But it is quite hard for me to transfer into shakuhachi at the moment. He use "to" and "ko". For "to", the tongue hit and front teeth and when the tongue retract, you pronounce "ku". I think he is using otsu register which is bit easier. I use it on Kan register, totally no solid sound. Personally, this is the fastest staccato technique that I learn. For me, you don't get struck in fast and repetitive staccato. In chinese written form is T and K. There is "Poo" and "Foo" as written in P and H, but I never came across it.
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Perry Yung
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PostPosted: 2013-11-04, 17:33    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

kongwee wrote:

... A very good Xiao is very hard to come by...
My teachers often go to the maker to pick one...

This is true for shakuhachi also!
Quote:


My former Dizi instructor playing Concert Xiao:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P8CBPA0dnzs
Winson recently made root end Concert Xiao:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3bE0Tr_X_80


Yes, these have very traditional tone colors. The video by Winston shows a typical xiao construction design where the length is longer than required for the tonic. So the bore is still mostly cylindrical as opposed to tapered.

RimBlown wrote:
Some more evidence of some kind of cross breeding. And lots of cheek puffing. Very un-Xiao-i for a Xiao.

http://www.microsofttranslator.com/bv.aspx?from=&to=en&a=http://v.y…

Thanks for the vid RimBlown, a very interesting development. The tone color is more like contemporary JIARI shakuhachi with the bright overtone on the fundamental. This is the contemporary sound of the tapered bore shakuhachi.

I wonder if there is debate in the xiao world whether this sound is traditional or not. Or, does it matter?

Quote:
I live in New York City and my favorite ice cream flavor has yet to be determined. But if pressed for an answer I'd have to go with Butter Pecan.

Between Green Tea by Haagan Dazs or Ben and Jerry's Cherry Garcia ;)

Thanks for the links! - Perry
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kongwee
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PostPosted: 2013-11-04, 18:16    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

Perry Yung wrote:


Yes, these have very traditional tone colors. The video by Winston shows a typical xiao construction design where the length is longer than required for the tonic. So the bore is still mostly cylindrical as opposed to tapered.

Thanks for the links! - Perry


There are four holes at the base of the Xiao. They form a rectangle at the back of the Xiao. I never understand what the use. The top two use for tunning, but do not know about the bottom two. That make them longer. Dizi also has four hole in different formation.
This Dong Xiao maker do have two hole drill right near the root.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Zs4E-KXOdE
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Perry Yung
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PostPosted: 2013-11-05, 17:28    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

kongwee wrote:
Perry Yung wrote:


Yes, these have very traditional tone colors. The video by Winston shows a typical xiao construction design where the length is longer than required for the tonic. So the bore is still mostly cylindrical as opposed to tapered.

Thanks for the links! - Perry


There are four holes at the base of the Xiao. They form a rectangle at the back of the Xiao. I never understand what the use. The top two use for tuning, but do not know about the bottom two.


Well, the extra length certainly affects the tone color and volume of the tonic note. I was told it also helps with the the pitches and stability of some of the second octave notes, but can't confirm since I don't play the Xiao at a high level. For shakuhachi, how the bell opens up does has a great affect on some of the second octave notes.
-
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kongwee
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PostPosted: 2013-11-05, 17:58    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

Perry Yung wrote:
kongwee wrote:
Perry Yung wrote:


Yes, these have very traditional tone colors. The video by Winston shows a typical xiao construction design where the length is longer than required for the tonic. So the bore is still mostly cylindrical as opposed to tapered.

Thanks for the links! - Perry


There are four holes at the base of the Xiao. They form a rectangle at the back of the Xiao. I never understand what the use. The top two use for tuning, but do not know about the bottom two.


Well, the extra length certainly affects the tone color and volume of the tonic note. I was told it also helps with the the pitches and stability of some of the second octave notes, but can't confirm since I don't play the Xiao at a high level. For shakuhachi, how the bell opens up does has a great affect on some of the second octave notes.
-


Professional Xiao and Dizi player do alter the holes for their own playing style. Properly the maker and professional player know what it is does. And I will never lent my bamboo flute to any chinese professional player.

Hmm that interest that mean how deep is the root being cut for shakuhachi will affect the second octave note. How about the third register? This mean for shakuhachi root end does involved lot of complication between register....
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meoweth
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PostPosted: 2013-12-10, 09:37    Post subject: Moving the jaw and cheek puffing (Winson-xiao) Reply with quote

Alright I figured out why he puffs his cheeks and moves his jaw.
You need to choose one direction of the jaw to make a bigger noise, then the opposite direction to make a tiny noice.
Key is that the jaw movement is diagonal not vertical.

When you goto the bigger noise area, you still keep the lips tightened, but your cheeks are relaxed and can puff up, which allows more air.
The sound for the lowest note on your shakuhachi will sound significantly louder, its almost unbelievable if you've mastered this technique.

On the opposite direction, its good for when trying to make an extremely small noise, as if its disappearing into nothingness.

Of course, you can make a extremely small noise in the middle too, but what's good about jaw movement is that it gives you more range to transition. As its the slowest and smoothest possible transition is only there when you have more distance to control, and that extra element of jaw movement gives you the extra variable to control.

This is pretty hard, but if you just practice the lowest possible note with your jaw diagonal you can get the feel of it, and vice versa for the other direction.
A tip is not to move your jaw too much, its really a tiny jaw movement, and doesnt have to be the same as winson's video, start off with a very small jaw movement and see if you can increase the loudness and resonance of that bottom note.
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