Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Lullaby For The Moon : Japanese Music For Koto And Shakuhachi
Genres: World Music, Pop
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Modern music for two timeless instruments
Algernon D'Ammassa | Los Angeles, CA United States | 09/21/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Featured here are the works of several modern composers writing for the koto and shakuhachi. For anyone unfamiliar with these instruments, which are basic staples in Japanese music: The koto is a plucked-string instrument with silk strings and movable bridges to manipulate the pitch, played with finger picks. The shakuhachi is a magnificent flute made from the bottom of a stalk of bamboo, including the root. It takes two decades to master this instrument, which can play scales and microtones. The sound of air through bamboo is unlike any other instrument. In combination, the koto and shakuhachi are magnificent and these compositions (including some variations on "Sakura," a very familiar theme in Japanese music) are premium quality, falling together like some act of nature.
One of the reviews below likened this music to the sound of rain falling on leaves; for some reason I think of snowfall (especially with 'Komoriuta,' which you can listen to above).No matter. This is a delicious introduction to Asian music, and a fine entree for connoisseurs."
Great shakuhachi, not sure about the koto
Joanna Daneman | Middletown, DE USA | 08/19/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I like most of this CD, but one or two pieces were major disappointments. First, the good news. I absolutely loved the first two shakuhachi (bamboo flute) pieces by composer Inzan Tanaka. They are meditative yet soaring, and in particular, the "Eight Miles through a Mountain Pass" truly conjurs the image of winds blowing through a craggy, mountainous pass. It's like listening to a sumi-e ink painting come to life--one of those wonderful long scrolls on rice papers with cloudy and dark ink brushing out mountains, fog and pines. I was disappointed with the variations on "Moonlight on a Ruined Castle." This is a traditional tune, familiar to many people. In fact, French virtuoso flutist Jean Pierre Rampal includes it as a concert piece. But the variations by composer Yamakawa are unsubtle and frankly unskilled. That made me sorry, because this is a favorite song and I just didn't like the awkward-sounding variations. In general, on this CD, I liked the shakuhachi playing much more than the koto, even though normally I like koto music better than the sometimes eerie-sounding Japanese bamboo flute. On the whole, I like this CD a lot, with the reservations I mentioned."
An incredible journey with sound
j54s | Maryland, USA | 01/02/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Truly one of the most relaxing and meditative CD's available. I can find no fault to this collection. The flute is exquisite, the Koto, gentle. Used during meditation, there are no sounds to jar you from your relaxed state. Everything flows well. I cannot say enough. It is just beautiful!"