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  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by khanjar View Post
    Okay a question without starting another zill thread ;

    Am learning Longa at the moment and yep, Using Shira's Instruction on her website but where it says in the counting diagram;

    R---rlR---rlR---rlR---rl,

    The accent on the Capital letters what's that, is that just whack the zills harder to get a louder sound ?

    And timing what is the correct timing for this ?

    Belly Dance: Finger Cymbals For 4/4 Music
    Yes, the strokes on the capital letters are louder, it's the downbeat. Longa is actually "and a One, and a Two and a Three and a Four", with the One, Two, Three, Four being the downbeats. That's why the pattern begins with the R hanging out by itself and ends with the rl. that last rl is actually what is called "pick up notes" or notes that happen before the One when you are counting measures, or rhythms in this case.

    Hope that helps.

    p.s. This pattern is sometimes called "the gallop," because it mimics the sound of a horse's gallop.
    Last edited by Dunyah; 12-25-2012 at 03:28 PM. Reason: added p.s.

  2. #32
    Moderator Farasha Hanem's Avatar
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    But for me, it's easier to do the "and-a" on one hand, and the dominating beat on the opposite. Do you have to go, rlR to execute the rhythm properly? I have to have a dominating hand; it's too confusing to not have a dominant hand.
    Last edited by Farasha Hanem; 12-25-2012 at 06:03 PM.

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Farasha Hanem View Post
    But for me, it's easier to do the "and-a" on one hand, and the dominating beat on the opposite. Do you have to go, rlR to execute the rhythm properly? I have to have a dominating hand; it's too confusing to not have a dominant hand.
    You might be a candidate for the zills that have a higher tone for one hand and a lower tone for the other, to do the doums and teks.

    I think you can play them any way that works as long as it sounds good. The problem you might run into is later on when you want to do more than just longa. For more complex patterns your system might fall apart. But I'm not sure, you would just have to try it.

    I have always used the number system that Jamila taught. One is always on the right hand, so you always know where you are. For example, if the pattern is 3, 3, 7, each time you say the number 1 to yourself, e.g. one two three, one two three, one two three four five six seven, you know that you start on the right hand.

  4. #34
    Member BigJim's Avatar
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    To change the pitch to match up with the dums and teks just change the positioning of the strike... I'm not sure you have to go with two different pitched zills...

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigJim View Post
    To change the pitch to match up with the dums and teks just change the positioning of the strike... I'm not sure you have to go with two different pitched zills...
    Some dancers do use the different pitched zills, for example, Jim Boz. I haven't done that myself, but I've wondered about the differences in technique that it would require.

  6. #36
    Moderator Farasha Hanem's Avatar
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    I suppose if you had several sets of zills, you could experiment around?

    Doing longa all the time is boring, but I'm having a hard time memorizing what the different rhythms sound like. Once I think I have something down, like Ayoub or Zeffa, I forget it! If it weren't for my rhythm CD's, I'd be totally lost. -_-

  7. #37
    V.I.P. khanjar's Avatar
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    Does anyone lose count of the strikes ?

    And how to get the things to ping instead of clunk, as mine are quite high pitched compared to rest of the class, but the longa aka gallop reminds me of a train.

  8. #38
    Member BigJim's Avatar
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    Yes... It's easy to lose track of your strike count.... when you are first learning I think it's important to have the road map ... IE.. rlR rlR or 123.. 123

    As your speed of playing progresses your brain won't be able to "keep the count"... you'll tangle yourself up.

    I'ts important to listen to the rythym that each zil pattern has... You are right when you are "hearing the train" instead of trying to count. As you get better you will naturally fall into the rythym and counting will be a thing of the past.... until you want to learn a new one and then you revert back to the count or sing the rythym to pick it up.

    To change the tone on the strike... hold your thumb zill vertically and hold your other zill horizontally over top of it... tapping the top of the thumb zill should give you the ting......to change pitch start dropping the top zill off the horizontal and start playing to the sides... you'll hear the change... to make them clop play them so they match up on the strike but kill the sound by placing your 1 and 3 finger on the back of the zill...by now you should be thoroughly confused but just play around with them... the fun is in the figuring it out...

  9. #39
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    Get good quality zills, like Saroyan or Turquoise or Zildjian if you want good tone.

    I teach my students different strokes
    Ring - strike the zills together fairly forcefully, and slightly offset, not straight on, and let them bounce apart right away
    Clack - as with ring, but keeping the index and ring fingers in contact with the zils, changes the sound from a ring to a clack
    Ting - holding the zills at right angles, as Big Jim describes in the post above, so that the zill on your middle finger is striking the rim of the zill on your thumb, strike as for Ring but less forcefully, for a quieter ring that I call Ting
    Tack - holding and striking as for Ting, but with the ring and index fingers held against the zill to make a sound like Clack but quieter

    I recently purchased the Egyptian Music and Appreciation Study Guide for Belly Dancers by George Dimitri Sawa, a musician who was trained in Egypt. (I highly recommend it, I have learned a lot, and I have been dancing and drumming and playing Middle Eastern music for many years). He says you only need two zill patterns, the longa and singles, (R L R L) at various speeds.

    American cabaret style dancers are known for playing more patterns, but you can certainly do a lot with those two. Keeping in mind when to play, when not to play, and the different types of sounds you can make, you can get a lot of variety with the longa and singles.
    Last edited by Dunyah; 12-29-2012 at 01:09 AM.

  10. #40
    Member ezmasiddiqah's Avatar
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    I really like my zills (old El Coyotes purchased on ebay) as two of them have a larger "bell" (read deeper sound), while the other two have a smaller "bell" (higher sound). I drill different rythms to build stamina in my arms and fingers and for fun I put arabic music on, identify the underlying drum pattern and zill away while dancing.

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