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Old 05-07-2011, 05:32 PM   #22
Mark Freeman
Dojo: Dartington
Location: Devon
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,220
United Kingdom
Re: Aikido and Music

Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Ahhh, Mark.
Like the fella said in the movie 'white men can't jump' ---

'Your hearing the music but your not listening.' Or was it the other way around?

No, but seriously, let me introduce you to a little something about reggae. I remember my old teacher who prided himself with his piano playing. One day composed a piece of music via his musical software on his computer and played it to me joking he was now a master of reggae.

I listened and then laughed to his surprise and said 'we call that english reggae' (by the way it was nothing like ub40) He had emphasized that so called up beat.

I proceded to tell him to listen more from the base line. That is the key. The base covers the first three beats and the fourth is silent so it's; 123_,123_,123_, 123_. Woahhhhh, I feel koshi, all I need now is some harmonies from hara!

Maybe we could put an accent in that space and it would be like a sword?

Mmmm. Think I'll leave the musical translation of Aikido to my son on second thoughts.

Oh I agree that the bass line is what drives it all along, and the space between the notes is where the magic of the music resides. And reggae is directly connected to the hips, no doubt, it certainly gets to mine.

I still think that jazz has the edge in the aikido analogies stakes. There is soft, slow, flowing and melodic, there is fast, rhythmic, and full on ('hard bop', which sounds like an MA style in itself), then there is free form improvisation, where the music can find it's own path. Of course there is some pretty bland stuff out there, and some which is not to everyone's taste.

One of my own favourite clips on youtube is this:

I can't help but watch this and admire the partner work, the superb following, the fearless movement, the focus, the energy, the connection, the timing, the physicality and the shear joy of doing. There's a nice bit of movement from the hips (especially at 0:55) and for those that like a well executed throw, then 1:46 should delight. Most aikidoka would love to be able to operate at their level, wouldn't we?



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