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Old 08-09-2017, 08:58 AM   #11
Klondike Waldo
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Default Re: Breathing cycle

Old Dog, congratulations on your journey learning "new tricks"
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Old 08-09-2017, 10:50 AM   #12
old_dog
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Default Re: Breathing cycle

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Law View Post
If I may offer for consideration...

When striving for constant pressure (a worthy and commendable ambition), don't faff about with manometers or even trying to maintain a given pressure....just blaw steady and listen to the sound you're producing....when the sound is steady, so will be the pressure.

If you wanna know what pressure actually is, by all means play with mechanical instruments, but the MOST important thing is the TONE....and that comes with steady pressure...

Along the way this will develop your ability to HEAR the tone, not rely on gizmos.

Good luck and persevere...sounds like you're making great progress
Thanks for the advice :-) Yes, I see devices such as a manometer and a tuner as learning tools to help me develop correct breathing and correct tuning, but not to rely on them.
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Old 08-11-2017, 05:07 AM   #13
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Default Re: Breathing cycle

Look for videos on You tube of the great Donald MacPhearson playing. He take frequent short, breaths with short blowing spells. His left arm barely moves as it is merely holding the pressure constant. He thus blows right through to the reed and minimizes the amount of arm/body movement. Almost all the top players play like this - very little movement of any part of the upper body, and certainly none of the "pig Wrestling" you sometimes see with the player madly pumping away with the left arm.
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Old 08-11-2017, 05:46 AM   #14
Green Piper
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Default Re: Breathing cycle

Why not begin as Steve suggested by listening to the tone, especially of the drones while you play. If you're able to get your tone into the "ballpark" of sound that you want, then good and you can work to improve it from there.

Then, if your instructor thinks it important, get a manometer later.

As for tuning devices, I use one for fine tuning my chanter scale. I have never used one to tune my own drones. For my chanter, I "rough in" my reed to get low A where I want it then balance to high A sometimes using a tuner, then hunt for badly flat notes by ear, etc. I am still working on hearing good tuning on my own chanter without the aid of a tuner and am getting better, but it takes work!

Anyway, I wouldn't invest in a manometer unless your instructor advises you to, same with a tuner!

Charlie


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Old 08-11-2017, 11:57 PM   #15
colinmaclellan
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Default Re: Breathing cycle

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Law View Post
If I may offer for consideration...

When striving for constant pressure (a worthy and commendable ambition), don't faff about with manometers or even trying to maintain a given pressure....just blaw steady and listen to the sound you're producing....when the sound is steady, so will be the pressure.

If you wanna know what pressure actually is, by all means play with mechanical instruments, but the MOST important thing is the TONE....and that comes with steady pressure...

Along the way this will develop your ability to HEAR the tone, not rely on gizmos.

Good luck and persevere...sounds like you're making great progress

Completely agree with this extremely good advice!
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Old 08-12-2017, 06:05 AM   #16
bob864
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Default Re: Breathing cycle

If you search youtube videos of great pipers, you'll see all sorts of things, but here is the most common:

Inhale. Blow and blow and blow and keep blowing until all your air is gone, and then inhale. Your left arm should barely move and your drones should be absolutely stable.
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Old 08-14-2017, 08:56 AM   #17
Mac an t-Sealgair
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Default Re: Breathing cycle

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Law View Post
If I may offer for consideration...

When striving for constant pressure (a worthy and commendable ambition), don't faff about with manometers or even trying to maintain a given pressure....just blaw steady and listen to the sound you're producing....when the sound is steady, so will be the pressure.

If you wanna know what pressure actually is, by all means play with mechanical instruments, but the MOST important thing is the TONE....and that comes with steady pressure...

Along the way this will develop your ability to HEAR the tone, not rely on gizmos.

Good luck and persevere...sounds like you're making great progress
+1 for this. Keep it simple. Relax, persevere, enjoy.
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Old 08-19-2017, 09:03 PM   #18
Pip01
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Default Re: Breathing cycle



Old Dog....
(Happy to see you're no longer lurking. :)

As Collin and Steve and Mac have all said...
just listen... to your drones... :)

As I have quoted an old Argyll piper here before...
"Jeez!! Drunken shepherds ha' been playin' these
things on th' sides a rain-soaked hills for hundreds
o' years! Just blow in to it... and play th' damned thing!"

Long... long before there was the advent o' pressure
gauges... and sixty-'leven electronic tuning gadgets...
there was only... a reasonably good pressure-sensitive
underside of the forearm... and a good set of ears. :)

Which is why a great many of us refer to all of this as...
"The Great Waltz-About"... :)

No help for it... Just get tore in... And keep after it...

Its all rather akin to learning how to change gears with a
manual transmission... Feel it... Hear it... Time it right... and
Bob's Your Uncle... and you have a smooth ride... :)

Wishing for you the Best of Good Fortune with it all,

Pip01


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Old 08-20-2017, 04:30 AM   #19
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Default Re: Breathing cycle

Agree with Pip....how delicately put....but for one small but important detail.....

I was NOT drunk at the time, Your Honour....a little tipsy perhaps, but NEVER drunk
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