Once Upon A Time In China - Online Classical Guitar Lessons
Years ago I watched what is probably my favourite kung fu movie of all time - 'Once upon a time in China' starring Jet Li, Yuen Biao, & Rosamund Kwan as 'Aunt 13'. The movie was based upon the legendary exploits of Wong Fei Hung who was amongst other things a doctor, accomplished martial artist, and local folk hero.
Setting the scene:
The opening scene shows a steam train traveling through the countryside in southern China and then it moves to a scene where many Shaolin monks are seen honing their martial arts skills on a beach. During these moments the wonderful theme track 'A man with determination' begins to play. This is the piece that I have transcribed. As far as I am aware I am the only person to have made a fully accurate and complete classical guitar transcription of this piece with accompanying classical guitar sheet music & tabs using Guitar Pro 6.
The piece itself is in B-flat minor but I transposed it up one semitone to B-minor for ease of playing on the guitar. In my video where I play it from beginning to end I am using my old Yamaha APX500 acoustic guitar. I was living in Bali at the time and I didn't have a classical guitar in the house so I used my acoustic instead. In my mind it does sound better on the classical guitar. My transcription features some lovely natural harmonics replacing the sound of the lead vocals sung by Pat Lam and the use of ostinato bass lines that replace the traditional Chinese Piba lines.
The classical guitar lessons are divided into 3 individual video tutorials and a full play-through that shows me playing it on my acoustic guitar in a house that I was renting in Bali.
I should end by saying that I've actually lived in China less than 2 hours from where Wong Fei Hung was born. Sadly, I never had time to visit the memorial that is in Foshan but that gives me an excuse to go back!