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Yagi Bushi

八木節

This is a piece of genre Min'yo from the Min'yo School.

History (Takahashi Yujiro):

This beloved Bon dance song from Yagi (Gunma Pref.) has a driving rhythm performed on a hand-gong and various drums - but most uniquely, on upturned sake barrels (here replaced by tsuzumi struck with beaters). Several long ballads are sung to this melody; this is a snippet from the start of the story of the Robin Hood figure Kunisada Chuji (1810-50). The lyrics end with one of several formulas.

The famous Kunisada Chuji was born in renowned Kunisada Village, Sawagori District, Joshu Province. His father's name was Chubei; Chuji was their second son. Born with a chivalrous spirit, he would willingly fight to help others.

He became a great gambling boss, envied by all. In 1846, mid-autumn, he built a gambling palace. There he passed each day in gaming battles - today, tomorrow, everyday.

Well, I'd like to continue this tale further: a long and skilful performance would be wonderful. But a long and untalented one would upset the gathering, so as voices cry out "Stop! Stop!", I'll halt my tale right here.

Yagi Bushi appears on the following albums

AlbumShakuhachiKotoShamisen
Melody of Japan - Brightness of Summer


Min'yo - Folk Song from Japan - Takahashi Yujiro and friends None

    This beloved Bon dance song from Yagi (Gunma Pref.) has a driving rhythm performed on a hand-gong and various drums - but most uniquely, on upturned sake barrels (here replaced by tsuzumi struck with beaters). Several long ballads are sung to this melody; this is a snippet from the start of the story of the Robin Hood figure Kunisada Chuji (1810-50). The lyrics end with one of several formulas.

    The famous Kunisada Chuji was born in renowned Kunisada Village, Sawagori District, Joshu Province. His father's name was Chubei; Chuji was their second son. Born with a chivalrous spirit, he would willingly fight to help others.

    He became a great gambling boss, envied by all. In 1846, mid-autumn, he built a gambling palace. There he passed each day in gaming battles - today, tomorrow, everyday.

    Well, I'd like to continue this tale further: a long and skilful performance would be wonderful. But a long and untalented one would upset the gathering, so as voices cry out "Stop! Stop!", I'll halt my tale right here.

    Copyright 1999 - Dr David W. Hughes
    e-mail dh6@soas.ac.uk

Minyo Meijin Series Watanabe Kizo


Nihon Minyo - Shakuhachi Tokusen Shu - 2


Shakuhachi Minyo - Okuni Meguri - Vol 4



The International Shakuhachi Society - 2017