Shamisen and Shakuhachi - Greenwich Library - April 22, 2018
I had no clue how to title this post – “Japanese Music” seemed too crass. So I named it for the musical instruments. What an intriguing presentation – the fruit of the Otozawa Project, dedicated to promoting traditional Japanese music, disseminated by “cultural envoys”. And while the instruments and garb were surely traditional, it seemed that many of the pieces were relatively recent – some from the second half of the 20th century. There were a lot of contemplative spaces and dynamics to appreciate in the selections, as Honjoh and Obama took turns applying their own personal touches in solo pieces and duets. The shamisen (strings made of silk!) is played with what has to be the world’s biggest guitar pick.