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The traditional Japanese Shakuhachi has deep connections with Zen Buddhism. It is also an instrument with a lot of natural harmonic overtones.
Breathing into a natural bamboo will make your breathing softer and slower. The feedback of your breath from the bamboo will relax you. Open a dialogue with the bamboo by concentrating on your breath.
The method of overtone singing that we teach are based on the traditional method of Tuvan throat singing (Khoomei) practiced in Mongolia, Inner Mongolia, Tuva, and Siberia.
Khoomei emphasizes the harmonic overtones in your vocal chords. You can sing like a whistle over your normal voice, and at the same time. By gently moving your tongue and your mouth cavity, you can sing beautiful overtones.
The Hocchiku Shakuhachi that we use are a large bass Jinashi Shakuhachi, which are all natural bamboo on the inside of the bore, unlike the bore of a modern Jiari Shakuhachi which are completely shaped with layers of plaster to produce a more even modern sound, the Hocchiku Shakuhachi produces a more deep sound emphasizing the natural material of the bamboo.
Its sound is filled with natural overtones, and will relax your body and soul as in meditation.
Overtones are the elements which determine the timbre of the tone. Sounds which are rich in overtones can move your body and soul. You will learn various ways to use your throat by studying the throat singing method as taught in Tuva.
Tuning a guitar to a chord is called Open Tuning Guitar. It virtually turns the guitar into a new instrument, letting you play exciting sounds which are impossible in a standard tuning (EADGBE). There are also many alternate ways to tune the guitar to create complex sounds without straining your fingers.
Blues guitarists, Hawaiian slack key guitarists and many guitarists of traditional European and Latin American guitar music have used open tunings and other forms of alternate tunings to create their own unique sounds. Joni Mitchell, Nick Drake, Richard Thompson, Keith Richard, Sonic Youth, My Bloody Valentine are among the well known players, who have created great music with open tunings.
And yet it is not at all difficult to play.
Joni Mitchell, who had weakened left hand due to polio that she had in her childhood, became one of the greatest to develop open tunings for the guitar. Open tuning allowed her to form the chord shapes she couldn't have played otherwise. Complex Jazz chords feature prominently in her open tuning guitar, and she went on to play with many legendary Jazz performers such as Herbie Hancock, Pat Metheney, Wayne Shorter, Jaco Pastorius and many others with her ubique method of tuning and playing the guitar.
Many guitarists can create a more larger, deeper and vibrant sound by tuning down their guitars. Joni Mitchell, who is said to have used no fewer than 57 tunings often compared it to a full orchestra.
There are still only a few players of open tuning and alternate tuning guitar in Japan, and Ayuo is one of its unique performers. Ayuo has performed open tuning guitar on many major albums since the 1970s.
Ayuo's Workshop & Live Solo will start with a 30-minutes solo performance after which he will teach a a one new song in a group lesson.
On June 12, 20017, Ayuo will teach Syd Barrett's song "Late Night" in Ayuo's own arrangement. The guitar is tuned CGDFGC. This tuning is used both in Celtic and Hawaiian guitar nusic.
On July 4, 2017, Ayuo will teach Big Yellow Taxi by Joni Mitchell. This song was also made popular by Janet Jasckson., This is in Open D tuning (DADF#AD) with a Capo to turn it into an open E.
Ayuo will be inroducing many different types of alternate tunings in future workshops.
Beginners are welcome!
None of the songs chosen are difficult to play.
Those who just wish to come and listen are also welcome.
Ayuo was raised in New York City, and speaks perfect English.
Please bring an acoustic guitar or nylon string classical guitar. There are no amps for electric guitars. Even very cheap guitars can sound good in open tuning.