World Arbiter

VA - Japanese Traditional Music: Noh, Biwa, Shakuhachi

"Subtitled: Kokusai Bunka Shinkokai, 1941. This second volume of the 1941 Kokusai Bunka Shinkô-kai (KBS) recordings features Noh theater masters, many of whom had been trained by artists active before the Meiji (1868) period. An essay and texts in both English and Japanese with translation are included in the CD. Noh, a masked play, was established by the actor Kan'ami Kiyotsugu (1333-1384) and his son Zeami Motokiyo (1363-1443) in medieval times. Based on various earlier forms such as sangaku (acrobat and juggling), dengaku (dance and play derived from rice festivals), and kusemai (dance), the noh created a far more highly artistic form of theater than ever before. Japanese biwa music is characterized by a narrative with biwa accompaniment. The instrument, born in ancient Persia and introduced into Japan around the 8th century as a component of the royal court's gagaku ensemble, is a four stringed lute plucked with a large plectrum. In the late 12th century, blind Buddhist priests developed a unique narrative style, using this instrument as an accompaniment. The shakuhachi is a vertical bamboo flute sharply edged in its flue. Its standard length is about 54 cm., but there are shorter or longer types than this standard. Shakuhachi was traditionally played by komusô, Fuke-shû priests (a Zen Buddhist sect). The blowing of a shakuhachi (sui-Zen, literally "blowing Zen") was a komusô's religious act equivalent to chanting a sutra."- World Arbiter.

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After nearly a decade of false starts, multiple game plans veering off the rails, and a handful of shattered hopes and/or dreams, the odyssey is finally complete—the new Fusetron site is here.

This is the first phase of a multipart rollout that will span the next few months: the currently browsable stock includes miscellaneous new releases from the past 8+ months (we have a lot of catching up to do), plus approximately a third of our backstock. Note that we’ve reduced/slashed prices on many titles and will continue to do so in order to make room for new stock. We’ll also be expanding / tweaking / improving / debugging the site itself (for example, we still have work to do on the automated international postage system, not to mention the inevitable inventory discrepancies that come with transferring an ancient and massive database to a new system).

Over the next few months, as we take inventory, clean house, and delve into our storage, we will be uploading thousands of additional items, gradually, on a near-daily basis. This will include the majority of the LPs, as well as many titles, in all formats, once thought long-gone. Many currently “sold out” items are likely to resurface.

Finally, once our general backstock is up (probably in the next two or three months) we’ll begin making our extensive stockpile of rarities available online for the first time: tons of random out-of-print titles, "deadstock," warehouse finds, secondhand collectibles, etc., accumulated over the past few decades.

Frequent/returning customers will be getting early access to these items. Details to follow on how this will work (a priority mailing list? a 'frequent flyer'-like program?), but it will not be based on dollars spent. We want to reward those who consistently support us, especially in the discogs marketplace era (to those who show up trying to poach five copies of a one-off rarity, and nothing else, ever… ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ).

So—we suggest you take some time to dig through the site—even we’ve been surprised by what’s been turning up, and there’s much more to come.
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