New User Special Price Expires in

Let's log you in.

Sign in with Facebook


Don't have a StudySoup account? Create one here!


Create a StudySoup account

Be part of our community, it's free to join!

Sign up with Facebook


Create your account
By creating an account you agree to StudySoup's terms and conditions and privacy policy

Already have a StudySoup account? Login here

Traditional World Music Japan

by: Bridget Dixon

Traditional World Music Japan MUSI 3583 503

Marketplace > Oklahoma State University > Music > MUSI 3583 503 > Traditional World Music Japan
Bridget Dixon
OK State
GPA 3.9

Preview These Notes for FREE

Get a free preview of these Notes, just enter your email below.

Unlock Preview
Unlock Preview

Preview these materials now for free

Why put in your email? Get access to more of this material and other relevant free materials for your school

View Preview

About this Document

These notes cover the readings over Japan.
World Traditional Music
Kunzel, Stephen N
Class Notes
25 ?




Popular in World Traditional Music

Popular in Music

This 9 page Class Notes was uploaded by Bridget Dixon on Sunday February 28, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to MUSI 3583 503 at Oklahoma State University taught by Kunzel, Stephen N in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 21 views. For similar materials see World Traditional Music in Music at Oklahoma State University.


Reviews for Traditional World Music Japan


Report this Material


What is Karma?


Karma is the currency of StudySoup.

You can buy or earn more Karma at anytime and redeem it for class notes, study guides, flashcards, and more!

Date Created: 02/28/16
Traditional World Music Japanese Hogaku Music Overview  Archipelago nation in E. Asia on Pacific Ocean  4 primary islands (90%) with 1,000s of smaller islands o Honshu; the mainland Hokkaido in the far north; Kyushu in the far south; and the smallest, Shikoku, in the southeast.  150 thousand square miles (same size as Montana)  only 11% ag because of rough terrain  population = 127 million  Yamato ethnic group = 98%  Japanese = primary language  Traditional, but known for innovation  Stayed isolated; The 16th century, however, was characterized by less permeable borders; Japan responded to European traders and missionaries by implementing strict regulations against foreign influence.  Ban against Christianity  Matthew Perry of US forced into trade in 1853  Edo renamed Tokyo and made capitol  Meiji Restoration became a catalyst for industrialization  Japan strategically adopted western culture while maintaining a strong national identity Westernization  Japan has encouraged Western music since the Meiji period o Introducted through educational system  Traditional music still popular today  1870s – western music elements introduced through singing, specifically with the widespread use of shoka songs o pair melodies based on Japanese traditional scales with Western regular meter and stanza form  Shin-Nihon Ongaku 1920s and 30s – physical structure of instruments changed to accommodate Western scales o Adversely affected Japanese instruments Religion  Shintoism and Buddhism very common  Self-realizations relies heavily on meditation, music, and arts  Shinto (the way of the Gods) is the indigenous religion of Japan o No founder o No single sacred scripture o Focus on the inate goodness of man o Worship ancestors o Celebrate passages-of-life o Shinto Gods ( kami) – sacred spirits that embody elements of nature, such as wind, rain, waterfalls, plants, and rocks o Does not require to exclusion of other religions  95% practice both Buddhism and Shintoism o governs joyous side of life th  Zen(meditation) – 13 century o Strong influence o Concepts include simplicity, enlightenment, self- understanding, meditation, and spiritual discipline Shomyo  Primary expression of Japanese Buddhism  Imported from China and Korea  A slow, repeating recitation of sutras(scriptures) in free rhythm  Densho –large bell rung with hammer  Responsorial – spiritual leader chants and monks respond o May sing at different pitches o Male chorus o Sung in Sanskrit, Chinese, and Japanese o Tremendous influence on hogaku Aesthetics  The branch of philosophy that deals with beauty  When looking at foreign art, one must put personal aesthetics behind  Many arts incorporate Zen technique o Most important aesthetic principle = harmony o Goal is expression of the human soul  Hogaku developed in the isolation of Japan’s Edo period  Principles included are:  Reverence for nature  Music recreates sound of nature  Wabi-sabi – poetic beauty of simplicity and harmony  Authenticity above all  Looeliness of living in nature  Older things symbolize a connection with nature o 3. Yugen(grace) - suggests an imaginative, ineffable, and profound perception of our three-dimensional world o 4. Geido (the way of the art)– says that the way art is created is just as important as end result  ex. Trained taiko drummers o 5. Ma – importance of emptiness within a piece, a home, a garden, or a painting.  Ex. Ma between musical phrases Musical Elements  Buddhist chant ( shomyo) brought Chinese music theory to Japan  Modes modeled on those of the chinese but with the addition of semitones  Primarily pentatonic – do not use equal temperament  Fifteen hundred years later, ryo and ritsu are still the backbone of gagaku court music and Buddhist music.  Harmony, although non-existent in hōgaku, is sometimes present in western-influenced Japanese music.  Steady rhythem = western quality  Rhymic freedom = greater individuality  Jo Ha Kyu, the most common musical form in hōgaku, uses rhythm rather than melody to differentiate the three sections referenced in its name. Jo (meaning introduction), is slow. The next part, Ha (meaning breaking apart), speeds up in tempo. The final part, Kyu (meaning rushing), speeds up to the climax of the piece then slows down again towards the end.  Students strive to be able to teach their craft Koto A bridged zither with a uncertain region Made of pawlonia wood and 17 silk strings Ornamental sounds and pitches Solo koto is music known as sokyoku gained popularity with the rising commercial class, as well as with women who lived in the homes of nobility. Modern koto began in the 16 century Kenjun tsukushigoto. He compiled pieces of solo koto music from the island of Kyushu. He also composed ten songs, called kumiuta, for voice and koto. Played in temples, goal is contemplation Women or blind cannot play Most koto calls for instrument as mearly an accompaniment Kumiuta is based on the original 16th century meter of its poems, which used a phrase length called dan. Dan varies from 64 to 120 beats. Each dan varies and develops the original melody. Purely instrumental koto pieces, called danmoto, also exist. They are comprised of several dan. One of the most famous danmoto works is Rokudan, which literally means Six Sections. Survived Meiji period because of beauty and sound Shamisen Three-stringed plucked lute Used to express emotion or drama A square-shaped wooden box forms the body, and both sides are covered with cat skin or plastic. The neck is constructed from wood Creates a buzzing sound Geisha’s primary instrument Originated from the teahouses of Tokugawa Edo Geishas played the kouta a song lasting one to three minutes Often had erotic themes Shakuhachi Five-holed, end-blown flute made of indigenous bamboo with a unique outward blowing edge Originated in China at the beginning of the Tang dynasty Brought to japan in the late 7 century Early meditative tool of esoteric buddhism (suizen meaning blowing Zen) Was not played as entertainment or for an audience The Fuke sect of the Edo period, open only to samurai, devoted itself to playing the shakuhachi and begging for alms Recognized as religious sect in 1677 Some men were speies but sincere desire for enlightenment Got thicker and root end could be used as weapon Meiji Restoration aimed to abolish samuri Monks found it practical to make a living by teaching others to play Secular playing became popilar Like many other instruments during Shin-Nihon Ongaku, the shakuhachi was redesigned so that it could play Western scales along with Western instruments. The influence of the Western tempered scale created changes in the shakuhachi’s construction. This gave rise to a new version of the flute, which was constructed using Japanese lacquer (urushi) to coat the inside of the instrument. Bone or horn was also added to the mouthpiece. These changes allowed the instrument to play louder and with more stable timbre and pitch. Taiko Refers to a wide range of percussion instruments Kumi-daiko was invented in the 1950s by one man: Daihachi Oguchi, a jazz drummer. Movements resemble martial arts Requires strength and stamina Choreographed movements The isolated island of Sado produced two of the primary taiko drumming ensembles, Ondekoza and Kodô. Ondekoza, the 1969 founder of modern taiko, has spawned and influenced many subsequent groups. Using the drum as a spiritual tool, its founding precepts include: mental, physical, and spiritual discipline; group harmony; and the principle of Sogakuron, which is based on the idea that "running and drumming are one and a reflection of the drama and energy of life." A few years after Ondekoza materialized, a several members formed the new group Kodô. The group has performed close to 4,000 times in Japan and abroad since its Berlin debut in 1981. Many other taiko groups (e.g., Oedo Sukeroku Taiko, Osuwa Daiko, and the San Francisco Taiko Dojo) tour worldwide. The experience of a live taiko performance, with its deep, resonant tones and elaborate choreography, is a truly special multi-sensory experience. Theatre Genres Noh, bunraku, and kabuki Noh Grew out of Zen Buddhism Supported by the samurai class Most important genres of hogaku Created by Kanami Kiyotsugu and his son Refined. Symbolic and highly stylized Stage Main stage Side stage for chorus Rear stage for musicians Long covered passageway Giant pine tree painted on the wall behind musicians Represents the tree thru which noh was transmitted from Heaven to man Traditional performances last all day and contain five plays Comic interludes called kyogen Three types of actors The shite = principle actor, the waki, = supporting roles and the kyogen = comic interludes Often wear masks and represents emotions The four instruments of the ensemble include three drums, the ko- tsuzimi ( small hour glass drum with two heads) o-tsuzumi ( larger hourglass shape drum and taiko ( played on a stand and has two cowhide heads) and a seven-holed transverse bamboo flute called the noh-kan. The flute is the only melodic instrument aside from the voice, but its melody is very different from the singer’s. Rather than long lines, it plays short motifs related to the action on stage. Rhythm is tremendously important in Noh. Each drum has of vocabulary of approximately two hundred rhythmic patterns. The result is a beautiful synthesis of free and metered rhythm which persists among the instruments and between the instruments and voices. Noh vocal style is most like shõmyõ with its rhythmically free, recitative phrases and melodies. Bunraku Biwa – predecessor to the shamisen This pairing enabled the singer to focus on two tasks: conveying the deep emotions of the story, and voicing characters. In 1684, when Osakajin singer Takemoto Gidayū (1651-1714) adapted narrative singing to puppet theatre, bunraku was born. To honor his contribution, the tayu/shamisen pair was named gidayū. Edo period Urban bourgeoisie patronized bunraku Significan overlaps between banraku and kabuki Bunraku plays are 3 – 12 acts long, each act builds over multiple scenes and can last up to two hours Still performed primarily at the National Puppet Theatre in Osaka and in Tokyo’s National Theatre Puppets are made of wood (up to 4 feet tall) Priamry puppeteer shows face, other two wear hood Gidayu – both actor and musician, preforms voices of puppets and accompanies the narrative with music Must possess great stamina and diversity Usually team up and work together for year The vocal style of bunraku, called gidayubushi, includes chanting, dramatic storytelling, character voices, and singing. Like the narrative music from which it stems, the shamisen plays excerpts before, in between, and after the narration. The function of the shamisen is to set a pitch, play interludes, and support the expression of the narrator. Kabuki Consists of primarily dance theatre with musical accompanying First = 1596, performed entirely by women prostitutes Banned women afterwards Male actors play all roles (Onnagata) Became extremely popular in the 18 and 19 centuries Lavish costumes, large casts and sets Borrows characteristics from noh, The genre also takes plays, acting techniques, and the gidayū from bunraku. Some of Japan’s most famous theater pieces are performed in both bunraku and kabuki. Uses revolving platforms, trap doors, and long runway (hanamichi) n addition to the gidayu, three fairly independent ensembles play during a kabuki performance. They are the debayashi, the shitakata, the and the geza. The debayashi consists of four to eight shamisen players and a male chorus. With beautifully choreographed movements, they appear on a platform at the back of the stage and kneel throughout the performance. The shitakata also sits on the stage, positioned in front of but beneath the debayashi. This group consists of the noh hayashi ensemble—a nohkan, o-tsuzumi, ko-tsuzumi, and taiko. The geza ensemble, which provides sound effects, is always off stage. Its numerous instruments include idiophones (e.g., clappers, cymbals and gongs), shamisen, o-daiko, nohkan, and any other instruments required by a particular play. The stage manager plays the hyoshigi, a set of rectangular woodblocks, to signal the beginning as well as the end of the play. The narrator, or chobo, and a shamisen player derive from Bunraku gidayū. Up to four chobo may perform together; they narrate the story, explain the plot, and comment to the audience on the play’s action. Today, the Kabukiza is the theatre dedicated to kabuki. Built in 1887 and located in Tokyo, it performs two programs a day: one from 11 am to 4 pm, and another from 4:30 pm to 9:00 pm. Each program consists of a few plays separated by brief interludes during which people eat and shop in the lobby area. Japanese Ensemble Music Folk is quite popular Westernized Japanese pop music scene Two primary hogaku genres Gagaku (meaning elegant music) = court music of Japan The oldest unbroken orchestral art music genre in the world (1200 years in Japan) Scarcly changed since birth, played at Imperial Court and in some temples Imitated music of China and Korea Modified during the early Heian period Instrumental music = kangen music used to accompany dance = bugaku orchestra includes: Aerophones = the ryuteki, hichiriki, and sho Idiophones = the shōko Membranophones = the kakko and taiko Chordophons = the gakuso and the biwa Sankyoku most predominant and important genre Sankyoku is probably the most predominant and important genre of Japanese chamber music. Sankyoku ensembles date back the 17th century; its instruments, however, have changed over time. Before the late 19th century, the hitoyogiri or kokyu joined the koto and the shamisen. The kokyu was a bowed, three-or four-stringed instrument that looked like a small shamisen, and the hitoyogiri was an end-blown bamboo flute. Both instruments could sustain notes that the koto and shamisen could not. Once it became secularized in the late 19th century, the shakuhachi, which could also sustain long notes, replaced the kokyu and hitoyogiri. The beauty of sankyoku comes from the lovely blend of the three instruments’ timbres. Much of the sankyoku repertoire was originally koto and shamisen solo music. Pieces vary greatly from lineage to lineage because composers, who doubled as performers, aurally handed down improvised melodies. Depending on the type of piece, the koto or the shamisen plays the main melody, and the other two instruments play variations of that melody. The combination results in a heterophonic texture. When koto and shamisen players sing, the instruments become subservient to their singing. Aerophones Ryuteki – a transverse bamboo flute with seven finger holes Hichiriki – an aboe –like aerophone with a double-reed and a piercing, distinctive timbre Made of bamboo 9 finger holes 3 in orchestra able to bend and slide pitches sho – a mouth organ that plays five to six note clusters designed to support the melody produces 11 different chords uses 17 bamboo pipes of equal diameter but different length sound is produced both by inhaling and exhaling Chordophones Gakuso – older version of the koto, a 6 ft long, 13- stringed zither tuned by 6 movable wooden bridges Biwa – a pear-shaped four-stringed lute with a flat back and silk strings Loud, crisp tone Membranophones Kakko – barrel drum played on a stand with two sticks that strike both heads Conducts orchestra and is responsible for setting the tempo of the piece Taiko – large two-headed frame drum with a deep, rich timbre Shoko – a small bronze gong that is also hung on a frame Folk Music (minyo) Many songs related to location Widely used Kagura – God music, largest genre of folk music Hayashi – folk ensembles consist of different types of drums, a transverse bamboo flute, gongs, and a bell with a clapper Popular Music (J-pop) Orginates from Japan’s westernization harmony; a steady rhythm; stanza form, equal temperament scales, especially in major keys; and shorter duration than traditional Japanese music. Enka – a genre rife with vocal ornamentation and blends Western and Japanese elements Became popular during the 1880s Since WWII, have expressed nostalgic, often sentimental themes with orchestral background Karaoke (empty orchestra) was popular in Japan before the US Supports group singing Participants relieve the stress of modern life by expressing sentimental emotions in a public venue. Enka most popular karaoke genre J-pop Roots in the british music of the 1960s Became popular in 1990s Besides lyrics, similar to American pop Stars often become national celebrities or icons Gagaku


Buy Material

Are you sure you want to buy this material for

25 Karma

Buy Material

BOOM! Enjoy Your Free Notes!

We've added these Notes to your profile, click here to view them now.


You're already Subscribed!

Looks like you've already subscribed to StudySoup, you won't need to purchase another subscription to get this material. To access this material simply click 'View Full Document'

Why people love StudySoup

Jim McGreen Ohio University

"Knowing I can count on the Elite Notetaker in my class allows me to focus on what the professor is saying instead of just scribbling notes the whole time and falling behind."

Janice Dongeun University of Washington

"I used the money I made selling my notes & study guides to pay for spring break in Olympia, Washington...which was Sweet!"

Jim McGreen Ohio University

"Knowing I can count on the Elite Notetaker in my class allows me to focus on what the professor is saying instead of just scribbling notes the whole time and falling behind."

Parker Thompson 500 Startups

"It's a great way for students to improve their educational experience and it seemed like a product that everybody wants, so all the people participating are winning."

Become an Elite Notetaker and start selling your notes online!

Refund Policy


All subscriptions to StudySoup are paid in full at the time of subscribing. To change your credit card information or to cancel your subscription, go to "Edit Settings". All credit card information will be available there. If you should decide to cancel your subscription, it will continue to be valid until the next payment period, as all payments for the current period were made in advance. For special circumstances, please email


StudySoup has more than 1 million course-specific study resources to help students study smarter. If you’re having trouble finding what you’re looking for, our customer support team can help you find what you need! Feel free to contact them here:

Recurring Subscriptions: If you have canceled your recurring subscription on the day of renewal and have not downloaded any documents, you may request a refund by submitting an email to

Satisfaction Guarantee: If you’re not satisfied with your subscription, you can contact us for further help. Contact must be made within 3 business days of your subscription purchase and your refund request will be subject for review.

Please Note: Refunds can never be provided more than 30 days after the initial purchase date regardless of your activity on the site.