fin less fret less

I was over at Frequent Rip Currents and reading a post about the upcoming video Musica Surfica.

It looks and I am sure sounds great. Mick has assured me that there is some mat riding in the main video as well as some in the extras section.

Watching the clip of Derek Hynd's riding a fin less board using his edges (or not) reminds me of the freedom on the mat. The freedom and the skill required to really ride these things well. (Something I am still working on).

But actually that's not where I am heading today.

The musical score for the movie is something I am looking forward to. I haven't heard the whole thing but much has been made of Mick's and others musicianship and how the music will fit into the whole and how it approaches "surf movies" from a different direction.

I don't know how many of you play an instrument but it occurred to me that riding any fin less surf craft is a lot like playing a fret less instrument.

For those of you unfamiliar with frets I "borrowed" the following from the wonderful folks at Wikipedia.

"A fret is a raised portion on the neck of a stringed instrument, that extends generally across the full width of the neck. On most modern western instruments, frets are metal strips inserted into the fingerboard.

Frets divide the neck into fixed segments at intervals related to a musical framework. On instruments such as guitars, each fret represents one semitone in the standard western system where one octave is divided into twelve semitones."

So if some knuckle head, like myself, who has played the guitar for years but still can't play it, if you know what I mean, so if I want to play a particular note or chord and assuming the instrument is in tune I just go to the specific coordinates and you have yourself a G chord. Unfortunately, I have been genetically gifted with hearing that doesn't let me carry a tune in a bucket and it would be easier for me to build a machine to play the notes, but enough about me.

Now let’s take a look at how some fret less instruments are played. The player must know thru a magical combination of their hearing and the physical familiarity with the instrument when the notes are to be found.

A whole ‘nother kettle of fish let me tell you!

First off let me thank you for reading thus far in a long and only somewhat interesting post. We are almost done so hang in there a little longer.

The mat or Alaia rider needs to know how to use the rails or make and use a rail on the mat. This would be analogous with the player of the fret less instruments.

The rider of the finned board is on the fretted side of the fence. He or she will use the attached fins to perform certain maneuvers. Fins out or side slipping not withstanding!

Not that outstanding performances can't be made with either instrument or surf craft!

Not better or worse really just different and there is nothing wrong with that.

PS Let me know what you think! If you don't I'll just ramble on and neither of us wants that!


Mick said…
Very sharp, Prana. Though not in the film, Derek in one of his interviews referred to finless as analogous to fretless.. so well spotted.
Also, though a lover of music, I can't play anything.. attempted violin years ago but kids came along and the sound of cat strangling didn't go down too well, and my attempts at guitar were frustrated by life.
Brian McKie said…
Being musically challenged my attempts at various instruments never really took off. I do however recognize the nuances and intricacies of many instruments.
However when I get in the water be it on a mat, board or just a pair of fins I always seem to have a smile.
clayfin said…
my attempts at guitar were frustrated by a lack of skill.
23 Breaths said…
I was looking at an old Surfers Journal last night and the title of the Hynd’s article was Fretless or something like that. So either I am a plagiarist or an idiot. I think I am an idiot. My apologies to Mr Hynd…

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