Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Lección de Bodhran Parte Tres

I was 10 minutes late again for my bodhran lesson. I was in a mad rush coming in from my shopping spree at the city centre. I saw my teacher sitting on his doorstep texting on his phone. I was going to get a yelling for sure and I'm sure he was texting that very moment.

I opened the gate breathless and apologized for being late. He seemed to be in good spirits and said it was ok. Mind you, I didn't practice at all this week and I was sure that he wouldn't be in good spirits for too long.

He gave me a glass of water. He inspected my new drum and said it was a really good drum. We went over what he taught me last week with the new 4/4 Reel rhythms. Of course, I completely forgot. He started doing them and told me to play along with him. I forgot what they were so I asked him if I can record our lessons from now on. Once I get home, I lose everything and don't know where to start practicing. He said, "Sure". So I whipped out my digital recorder from argos and plugged away. This time I won't have any excuse to not practice. I also noticed that he used the word "practice" in every sentence like his trying to tattoo it on my brain. Could he be hinting at something? Nah!

After we reviewed everything I learned with reels we went on to jigs. Jigs are slower than reels and is in 6/8 time. I love 6/8 and I picked up the rhythms quickly. He was astonished. He'd show me once and I would get it. He says I'm the first ever student that picked it up immediately. He also gave me handouts of the different jig rhythms and he photocopied an article on the history of the bodhran.

I thought I did well in class except towards the end my left eye was stinging and distracting me. My eye was tearing up. I didn't even bother to wipe the stream on my left cheek because I wanted to concentrate. He keeps emphasizing that the bodhran is easy to play. I don't think it's that easy. It's so different from the other styles I play (Middle Eastern, African, Indonesian, Pilipino, Afro-Cuban, and Afro-Brazilian percussion). Bodhran is quite unique with the sweeping motion of the stick. But he's right, I have to give myself some slack I've only been playing for 3weeks and I only can do what I can do for now. I'm too hard on myself and impatient.

He sent me on my way and gave me a CD of a bodhran player. Homework for studying different techniques. Next week there may or may not be any class which means I have to keep checking my email consistently.

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