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Author Topic: Vibrato  (Read 24236 times)
GregSchneider
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« on: November 14, 2008, 11:40:00 pm »

As a sax player, I use my embouchure and jaw motion to achieve vibrato, as a violin player the rocking motion of my hand and finger achieve it, but on the ocarina I understand that I achieve vibrato by oscillation of the diaphragm. Can you recommend some exercises that will help me, a newbie on this instrument, to develop beautiful vibrato like Karl's?


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Cliff
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« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2008, 11:51:16 pm »

Hi Greg.

Thanks for dropping by.

Here's something Karl wrote a number of years ago regarding diaphragmatic vibrato:

How to play diaphragmatic vibrato. While there are different ways of producing vibrato, the method that I employ is diaphragmatic vibrato. The diaphragm is a muscle that is used for breathing and that separates the thoracic cavity, where the heart and lungs (etc.) are located, from the abdominal cavity, where the stomach and intestines (etc.) are located. When your diaphragm contracts, it flattens downwards, thereby increasing the volume of your chest cavity and causing your lungs to take in air to fill the resulting vacuum. When your diaphragm relaxes, it moves up, forcing air out of your lungs.

While it frequently functions with no conscious input from you (such as when you sleep), here are some steps you can take to gain control over your diaphragm to produce a nice vibrato. First, place your hand on your stomach and try laughing, "Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha," in a whisper, i.e., without using your vocal cords.

Can you feel your stomach pulsing?

That was your diaphragm propelling air out of your lungs. Now, play a long G note on your ocarina while expelling air in slow rhythmic pulsations with your diaphragm as you did when laughing. After practicing this for a time, eventually begin speeding up your vibrato by tightening your stomach muscles slightly.

Dont expect spectacular results the first or second time you try this. Learning to produce a pleasing, controlled vibrato is not complicated, but it usually requires small amounts of practice over an extended period of time.


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Karl B
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« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2008, 05:31:27 am »

Thanks Greg for the topic.  This is one area I'm going to be working on as well! 

Karl B


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Spatolo
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« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2008, 01:58:32 pm »

For me vibrato is an advanced area; I still want to focus about using breath control to get clean, in tune, tones. Nevertheless I'd love to read your progresses, discoveries, and the like. Thank you!


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Cliff
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« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2008, 06:50:36 pm »

Greg,

I just got off the phone with Karl a little bit ago, and he will be making a short video to offer some help.


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GregSchneider
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« Reply #5 on: November 18, 2008, 01:27:12 am »

I'll look forward to Karl's video. His vibrato is pretty wonderful.


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ubizmo
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« Reply #6 on: November 18, 2008, 01:48:45 am »

I'll look forward to Karl's video. His vibrato is pretty wonderful.

His vibrato is amazing.  I find that vibrato is a pretty individualized thing.  Once you start to practice it, it quickly becomes automatic, but the beat rate and intensity seems to vary from person to person.  You can control it to some extent but there's a tendency to return to whatver is natural for you. 

Something to think about when learning vibrato is this: Try to keep the "contractions" low in your abdomen, rather than resorting to a kind of throat constriction.  Otherwise you can end up making a kind of unpleasant coughing sound without being fully aware of it.  Try to feel it in your belly and you'll do fine.

It's a little harder on higher notes where you need faster air flow, but it'll come.

ubi


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ken
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« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2008, 12:49:02 am »

There is one other way to produce a vibrato for some notes. Take a note, play a trill on it. Keeping the trilling motion going but with the trilling finger coming close to covering only part of the hole. If done right it will cause a wavering in pitch. With experimentation it is possible to produce a really good sounding vibrato on long notes in this manner. It is easier to show someone how it is done then trying to describe it.


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Cliff
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« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2008, 09:03:24 am »

Just wanted to update you on the status of the video that I mentioned above. Karl has been working on this, and Karl realized  it needed a more detailed treatment than the quick one I had in mind. That being said, it should be done soon. Thanks for your patience.


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Cliff
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« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2008, 08:23:02 am »

I just posted a video that Karl put together on vibrato. It's in the "quick thoughts" board... but this thought is not so quick  Wink

http://www.ocarinaboard.com/bb/index.php?topic=203.0


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Spatolo
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« Reply #10 on: December 08, 2008, 08:48:28 pm »

Today I was playing on the bed (not a great idea for breathing, I know) with a leg outside of it and a foot on the floor. I accidentally started to move the leg up and down and that poduced vibrato! Of course the movement of the leg affected my abdomen area and that affected how air flowed out of my mouth. That was very interesting!

If anybody is going to try I'd love to know your opinion and if that worked for you too (I bet it will  Wink )

Ciao!


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Secretagentdan
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« Reply #11 on: December 08, 2008, 09:49:05 pm »

Spatolo, you should try and sit on the washing machine and playing, I bet that would produce some serious vibrato! Smiley


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Spatolo
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« Reply #12 on: December 08, 2008, 10:38:26 pm »

Spatolo, you should try and sit on the washing machine and playing, I bet that would produce some serious vibrato! Smiley


And you can even save on the costs of a metronome! Just listen to the washing cycles.

 Angry Angry Angry


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Secretagentdan
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Exodus, movement of jah people!


« Reply #13 on: December 08, 2008, 11:09:38 pm »

That's a valid point! Hey Spatolo, I think we've had a breathrough! Smiley


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Karl
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« Reply #14 on: December 11, 2008, 03:02:00 am »

I was going to include "leg twitching" and "washer sitting" in my Vibrato video, but I didn't want to overwhelm beginners with too many advanced techniques.Smiley


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