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Playing traverse flute or an instrument while unicycling

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  • #16
    Originally posted by wobbling bear View Post
    the big problem is to manage your lips position while on the uni. could be very difficult (I tried playing the trumpet and didn't succeed ... this said at the Stanford Marching Band there is a picture of a lady playing sousaphone while riding ... Ouch!)
    I've played trumpet and trombone whilst riding - trumpet is easier as I can play that one handed. Not good enough at idling to play whilst idling - apart from balance issues it takes more effort and I get out of breath very quickly. I'd like a sousaphone and would definitely try to play it whilst riding (though apart from them being quite expensive I now live on a boat and not sure I have the space!) Though the current target is to play trombone whilst riding my giraffe which I reckon should look quite good - just off out to practice as I've got a gig on Friday and thinking of trying it then.
    Unicycling: great for your thighs.

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    • #17
      Five instrument playing UW'ers. I kind of wonder if this is as it looks.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by JimT View Post
        I kind of wonder if this is as it looks.
        It looks like a promotional photo, to help sell the act. My guess is that it was done in a studio-type setting, with everyone leaning against the wall or some other support, to get a clear, crisp shot with everybody's pedals in about the same orientation. The guy in the back looks like he's been touched up, which would have been done in this sort of photo to make it clearer to see, and look better when reproduced. I have no doubt of these performers' ability to ride those things, as I've seen other images of UWs like that, and it's probably the same people.

        Couple of additional notes:
        1. For readers of the "Learning to ride Ultimate Wheel" thread, notice that everybody is riding on the balls of their feet, including the women with the heels
        2. This photo is probably about 100 years old, or at least no more recent than the 1930s
        John Foss
        www.unicycling.com

        "Who is going to argue with a mom who can ride a unicycle?" -- Forums member "HiMo"

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        • #19
          Originally posted by aracer View Post
          Though the current target is to play trombone whilst riding my giraffe which I reckon should look quite good - just off out to practice as I've got a gig on Friday and thinking of trying it then.
          Just a quick report back - played trombone whilst riding my giraffe this evening - it was a bit ropey as there were far too many people around and I had to concentrate far too much on riding to be able to play well, but it still seemed to be a hit with the audience. In practice I can actually play fairly well whilst riding, but that's with lots of space to play with.

          Really need to do a lot of work on my idling - I can idle really well on the giraffe, but nowhere near well enough to do it without having to think so I can concentrate on playing trombone.
          Unicycling: great for your thighs.

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          • #20
            Re: The Circus performing UW riders in the photo, above...They are pictured holding the instruments with both hands. I wonder how much harder UWs are without the use of flailing hands. It is possible to play the trumpet and the alto and baritone horns one handed, though it's not ideal technique. With the baritone, holding the weight of the instrument with one hand could be challenging for extended periods of time. Bell-front baritones or alto horns would be better for an outdoor setting; otherwise, a lot of the sound is being directed into the sky. The slide on the trombone in the photo looks unnaturally short. A trombonist could tell me if short slide trombones were ever a thing. It doesn't look like he can get seven positions out of that trombone. I wonder if separate photos were taken of each performer, then overlapped for the final photo...hence the shortened trombone slide, which would otherwise extend over the shoulder of the next performer.

            Many of my friends have suggested I play the bassoon while unicycling (I received my musical training on the bassoon). The bassoon is already quite awkward to hold. Combining it with unicycling would be dangerous for my face and for the instrument.

            Not long after learning to unicycle, I rode around the neighborhood while playing the guitar. I found that it took almost no effort to integrate the two skills. The neck of the guitar worked well as ballast. With a guitar, the performer can play and sing while unicycling, giving you more bang for your buck.

            And taking it to the level of Gesamtkunstwerk (total work of art)...the beat of the music has to line up with the beat of the idling. My idling doesn't have much of a steady beat. Combining music to my lopsided idling has comic potential.

            Then, there may be others who think playing an instrument while riding diminishes the seriousness of unicycling...

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            • #21
              Originally posted by Saul_nova View Post
              Alright, unicycle-fluting is my new favorite hobby. And you all said it couldn't be done! :evil:
              So glad I started this thread and you discovered that it can be done!

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              • #22
                Originally posted by elpuebloUNIdo View Post
                Re: The Circus performing UW riders in the photo, above...They are pictured holding the instruments with both hands. I wonder how much harder UWs are without the use of flailing hands. It is possible to play the trumpet and the alto and baritone horns one handed, though it's not ideal technique. With the baritone, holding the weight of the instrument with one hand could be challenging for extended periods of time. Bell-front baritones or alto horns would be better for an outdoor setting; otherwise, a lot of the sound is being directed into the sky. The slide on the trombone in the photo looks unnaturally short. A trombonist could tell me if short slide trombones were ever a thing. It doesn't look like he can get seven positions out of that trombone. I wonder if separate photos were taken of each performer, then overlapped for the final photo...hence the shortened trombone slide, which would otherwise extend over the shoulder of the next performer.

                Many of my friends have suggested I play the bassoon while unicycling (I received my musical training on the bassoon). The bassoon is already quite awkward to hold. Combining it with unicycling would be dangerous for my face and for the instrument.

                Not long after learning to unicycle, I rode around the neighborhood while playing the guitar. I found that it took almost no effort to integrate the two skills. The neck of the guitar worked well as ballast. With a guitar, the performer can play and sing while unicycling, giving you more bang for your buck.

                And taking it to the level of Gesamtkunstwerk (total work of art)...the beat of the music has to line up with the beat of the idling. My idling doesn't have much of a steady beat. Combining music to my lopsided idling has comic potential.

                Then, there may be others who think playing an instrument while riding diminishes the seriousness of unicycling...
                Thank you for sharing that! Bassoon looks like a fun instrument, I enjoy listening to bassoon concertos and sonatas from the Baroque and Classical period. Guitar does look like it would be easy to do on a unicycle.

                I don't think idling and playing an instrument necessarily need to be in sync to be done properly, but it helps if the rhythms aren't too dissimilar. I still don't have a flute, I'm considering looking into after Christmas sales; maybe I can buy an inexpensive barely used one from someone who got a flute for Christmas but didn't really want one.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by aracer View Post
                  I've played trumpet and trombone whilst riding - trumpet is easier as I can play that one handed. Not good enough at idling to play whilst idling - apart from balance issues it takes more effort and I get out of breath very quickly. I'd like a sousaphone and would definitely try to play it whilst riding (though apart from them being quite expensive I now live on a boat and not sure I have the space!) Though the current target is to play trombone whilst riding my giraffe which I reckon should look quite good - just off out to practice as I've got a gig on Friday and thinking of trying it then.
                  Wow, playing trumpet and trombone while unicycling! Awesome! At least that's a great way to alert people wherever you ride. You should consider learning to juggle while idling, since that may make it easier to play trumpet while idling. Or at least learn to idle with your arms at your side.

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                  • #24
                    Is the Yamaha YFL-222 Intermediate Flute good for a beginner? I like that it has an offset G, and it gets good reviews. Anything in particular to look for as an aspiring uni-flutist?

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by johnfoss View Post
                      [*]For readers of the "Learning to ride Ultimate Wheel" thread, notice that everybody is riding on the balls of their feet, including the women with the heels
                      And you mean to say by that that the photo is a trick, because nobody would ride UW on the balls of their feet, or that because it is for the photo and they are hanging against the wall and not putting their weight on the left feet, they can do it as they won't be riding off into the sunset anyways.

                      I can imagine it will still be wobbly to get up like that with an instrument in ur hands and keeping steady for the photo.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Acrorebel View Post
                        Wow, playing trumpet and trombone while unicycling! At least that's a great way to alert people wherever you ride.
                        I don't think peeps would be too happy if I were to do that when riding in the forest and the peds are blocking the way in front of me, enjoying the peace and quiet. It will certainly be effective.

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                        • #27
                          Update:

                          Instead of a transverse flute I've been playing tin whistle for a few weeks now, mostly learning "Green Sleeves". I can almost play "Green Sleeves" while standing still, then a few days ago tried to play it while idling on my 24" unicycle -- I could barely play it. This will probably take some getting used to. I wonder if it's easier to play an instrument on a 20". Anyone experiment with this? I can juggle 3 balls while idling without much difficulty these days.
                          Last edited by Acrorebel; 2019-02-12, 09:49 PM.

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Acrorebel View Post
                            I wonder if it's easier to play an instrument on a 20". Anyone experiment with this? I can juggle 3 balls while idling without much difficulty these days.
                            IMHO, a smaller wheel is generally better if you want to do "stuff" while riding it. Unless you have a need to go faster. But if you want to go slow, and be able to control your course, smaller/lighter will probably work better.
                            John Foss
                            www.unicycling.com

                            "Who is going to argue with a mom who can ride a unicycle?" -- Forums member "HiMo"

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by johnfoss View Post
                              IMHO, a smaller wheel is generally better if you want to do "stuff" while riding it. Unless you have a need to go faster. But if you want to go slow, and be able to control your course, smaller/lighter will probably work better.
                              Thanks! I'll probably get a 20" soon, most likely used. I suspect a 20" will probably be less tiring since it is less wheel to move back and forth. 5 minutes of juggling 3 balls while idling and I'm usually exhausted, and I'm a distance-runner. It's even more exhausting with clubs which I am still struggling with. It's not that tiring juggling while riding forward though.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Acrorebel View Post
                                Update:

                                Instead of a transverse flute I've been playing tin whistle for a few weeks now, mostly learning "Green Sleeves". I can almost play "Green Sleeves" while standing still, then a few days ago tried to play it while idling on my 24" unicycle -- I could barely play it. This will probably take some getting used to. I wonder if it's easier to play an instrument on a 20". Anyone experiment with this? I can juggle 3 balls while idling without much difficulty these days.
                                is playing while riding the problem (difficulty multitasking), or is the problem with your hands being frozen in place on the tin whistle close to your head (awkward balance position)?

                                I have never attempted to play tin whistle or recorder on the unicycle, but in my imagination that seems much much easier than unicycling and juggling...go figure...

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