Steven Casano | The Voice of Bamboo

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World: Japanese traditional New Age: Meditation Moods: Spiritual
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The Voice of Bamboo

by Steven Casano

This album features traditional Zen meditation pieces of the Japanese shakuhachi flute.
Genre: World: Japanese traditional
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Hon Shirabe
3:30 album only
2. Yamagoe
3:34 album only
3. Yamato Choushi
4:05 album only
4. Tehodoki Reibo
3:17 album only
5. Daha
4:24 album only
6. Murasakino Reibo
5:36 album only
7. Nezasa Shirabe
3:04 album only
8. Sagariha
3:18 album only
9. Azuma Jishi
2:03 album only
10. Sanya
6:26 album only
11. Sanan
6:01 album only
12. Tamuke
3:40 album only
13. Yodogawa Sanjukkoku Funauta
1:38 album only
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
This recording features pieces of the traditional Japanese shakuhachi flute. Originally brought over from China as part of the ancient Japanese court music, Gagaku, the shakuhachi eventually evolved into an instrument that was used by a sect of Zen Buddhism known as the Fuke sect. This unique and mysterious sect of Zen Buddhism used the shakuhachi as a meditative practice known as suizen or blowing zen. All of the pieces on this recording feature these traditional meditation pieces, known as honkyoku. The one exception is the last piece, Yodogawa Sanjukkoku Funauta, which is a traditional folk song from the Osaka region. Three distinct lineages are featured: Kokusai Shakuhachi Kenshuukan (Hon Shirabe, Tamuke, Sanan, Yamagoe, Daha, Sanya, and Azuma jishi); Chikuho Ryuu Hawaii (Yamato Choushi, Murasaki reibo, Tehodoki reibo); and pieces of the Nezasa ha style of northern Japan (Nezasa Shirabe, Sagari Ha), which features a unique pulsating breathing technique known as komibuki (crowded breath). Just as in the study of taijiquan, when blowing honkyoku we are training to attain the wuji state of mind/body: to flow, relax, breath, remain centered, and to be utterly and totally in the here and now. We train to maintain this wuji state in the face of whatever challenges or problems arise in both music and life. That is the true nature of honkyoku.

I would like to dedicate this recording to my teachers and mentors who have guided and inspired me down this path: Ron Gazdziak, John Neptune, Robert Herr, Riley Lee, Ishikawa, Toshimitsu, and Yokoyama Katsuya.

As a licensed teacher and active performer of the shakuhachi, Mr. Casano has performed on the documentary soundtrack, "Aloha Akebono" (KHON TV) and has given performances or guest lectures at the Japanese Consulate, Bishop Museum, Honolulu Academy of Arts, University of Hawaii at Manoa, East-West Center, Hawaii Theater, Chaminade University, and Kapiolani Community College. He has also performed in Osaka and Bisei Japan, Albany, New York, Chicago Illinois and is a frequent presentor at the Japanese Studies Association's Freeman Foundation Summer Institute. A recipient of the prestigious Japanese Ministry of Education Scholarship (Monbushou), Mr. Casano conducted extensive research on the modern history of the shakuhachi tradition at Osaka University and under the guidance of Tsukitani Tsuneko and the Osaka Geijutsi Daigaku Shakuhachi Kenkyuukai. Mr. Casano has been published in the international journal, "The World of Music" and has served on the faculty of the Hawaii Shakuhachi Festival 2006 and the Kauai Shakuhachi Festival 2014. His teachers include Robert Herr and Riley Lee in Hawaii and Ishikawa Toshimitsu and Yokoyama Katsuya in Japan.



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