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Shakuhachi length and Shamisen

 
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Eugene
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PostPosted: 2015-06-21, 21:42    Post subject: Shakuhachi length and Shamisen Reply with quote

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Over the past three days, I had the pleasure of participating in a shakuhachi lesson, a shamisen lesson and a ensemble session conducted by a shamisen/shakuhachi player from Japan who is in town.

During the ensemble session, which also involved taiko, shinobue and koto, the teacher said (in Japanese, so I'm paraphrasing the English translation provided by one of the bilingual people at the session) something to the effect that 90% of the pieces that are commonly played at the key/tuning that the shamisen players present usually used would best match a 2.0 shakuhachi, though for the other 10% a 1.8 would be more suitable. For reference, the pieces that we played were: Sakura, Takeda no komoriuta, Soran bushi and Hanagasa ondo.

Unfortunately, I did not quite catch the Japanese name of the tuning and checking a shamisen website does not ring a bell, but I noted "C major" as the key (which perhaps not coincidentally is the key of a 2.0 shakuhachi).

So, my question is: does it make sense for me to invest in a 2.0 shakuhachi given that there are plans for this ensemble session to become a regular fixture (without the guest teacher, but still), or would it be futile because we might proceed to play pieces that are in a different key or require a different tuning of the shamisen, so it would be more sensible to adjust the shamisen instead?
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Lindsay
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PostPosted: 2015-06-22, 18:38    Post subject: Shakuhachi length and Shamisen Reply with quote

From the bottom of the page you cited:

"Where the shamisen is pitched depends on the singer/instruments being performed along with it."

Eugene wrote:

So, my question is: does it make sense for me to invest in a 2.0 shakuhachi given that there are plans for this ensemble session to become a regular fixture (without the guest teacher, but still), or would it be futile because we might proceed to play pieces that are in a different key or require a different tuning of the shamisen, so it would be more sensible to adjust the shamisen instead?


If the ensemble won't tune to play with a 1.8, then you will have to buy a 2.0. Changes in shamisen tunings won't necessarily render buying a 2.0 futile, but it depends on the music. Many gaikyoku pieces feature modulations, but only a few pieces need the player to use two different lengths of shakuhachi, for example.
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Eugene
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PostPosted: 2015-06-24, 21:04    Post subject: Shakuhachi length and Shamisen Reply with quote

Right. Thanks! Smile
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PostPosted: Today at 19:22    Post subject: Shakuhachi length and Shamisen

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