As a continuation of the previous post about my thoughts on my experience with Shakuhachi, today I played and recorded Taki Otoshi no Kyoku, a wonderful piece from the Kinko tradition. Attached to the recording here some information about the piece from shakuhachi master John Singer which I found in the website of the International Shakuhachi Society.
This piece is also called “Take Ochi” and it was named after a beautiful waterfall called Asahi Taki located near Ryugen-Ji Temple in Izu Prefecture. Taki Otoshi is said to be a description of the sound of the waterfall and its waters flowing through the rocks.
Taki Otoshi was transmitted to Myoan-Ji Temple in Kyoto, Fudai-Ji Temple in Hamamatsu, the Kinpu Ryu (Nezasa Sect) in Aomori, and elsewhere in Japan. The piece is played in essentially the same way in each location which is rare among Shakuhachi Honkyoku music where pieces having the same title are usually performed in a completely different manner.
The melody which binds this piece appears first in its center. Therefore, if this music is divided into two parts the later half begins almost as a repetition of the first half. From the center, the later half of the piece begins as a refrain and the new melody continues until the performer’s state of mind becomes lofty and peaceful.
Taki Otoshi is a well organized Honkyoku piece. It was transmitted to the Kinko Ryu by the priest Zansui at Ichigetsu-Ji Temple.