|close your eyes|
[music, albums] October 9, 2005 8:04:00 PM CEST
XXXVIII: 1964 Tony Scott - Music for Zen Meditation (and other joys)
Erroneously I put John Coltrane's A Love Supreme into the 1964 poll. That so often lauded record never left any impression on me. Probably it has to do with disappointed expectations. I always thought there would be something highly spiritual going on in that music. Maybe there is but it has not yet reached me. Tony Scott's Music for Zen Meditation on the other hand I discovered on my own without having read anything about it beforehand. It became one of my favourite records to calm down and concentrate.
Around 1960 the clarinettist Tony Scott was the ambassador of jazz in the Far East. He spread jazz to Japan, Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Hong Kong and Taiwan. In Tokyo he collaborated with the koto (a zither) player Shinichi Yuize and the shakuhachi (bamboo flute) player Hozan Yamamoto to create one of the first and most original albums of world music, Music for Zen Meditation. It is extraordinary as it is totally improvisational (this could be seen as its underlying jazz vibe which you actually can't hear) on one hand and traditional sounding on the other hand. In the Japanese classical music everything is composed, there is hardly any room for the performer to express himself. The result of this liberation is a naturally flowing peaceful record which to me almost sounds more classic and universal than the classical Japanese music itself. Which I am not very familiar with, I must admit though.
The album can be broken up in three parts. The first piece called Is Not All One? is the only track where the full trio of koto, shakuhachi and clarinet is featured. Which makes it the fullest sounding piece.
The other titles of the first side of the album all conjure up nature scenes.
On The Murmuring Sound of the Mountain Stream the dominating koto is responsible for the sound of the flowing water whereas the clarinet mumbles in the background.
Adequately A Quivering Leaf, Ask the Winds is a wonderful flute solo. In the shakuhachi I hear the musicality of the wind which arises when it touches the leaf.
After the Snow, the Fragrance is a duet of koto and clarinet. The waterdrops of the melting snow can be heard in the strings of the koto, the more profound clarinet provides the scent.
The koto and shakuhachi duet To Drift Like Clouds finishes the first side. A short and light piece.
All titles on the second side are linked to zen meditation. This makes them more abstract, there are no direct connections to natural phenomena. There is another reason why this side is more challenging to listen to, I think. The last three pieces are all koto-clarinet duos. Therefore there is less variation in sound. Which makes sense for meditation purposes, I guess, but I find my aural attention sometimes wandering away especially during the last two pieces Sanzen and Satori.
The first track Za-Zen though is a phantastic albeit much too short duet of shakuhachi and clarinet. It is quite amazing how Tony Scott on the left channel succeeds in mimicking the leading shakuhachi on the right channel. If you turn off the right speaker so that you don't have a reference the clarinet could be taken for a flute in places.
On the second piece, the instrumental chant Prajna-Paramita-Hridaya Sutra Tony Scott mainly plays in the lower registers and the clarinet has its typical soft and brumous sound.
The greatest thing about this album to me is that I never get bored by it. There are no melodies which can ever get used up. Every listen purifies the mind of the mundane distractions like a cup of clear green tea.
Here is the overview of the series 40 years, 40 albums of which part XXXVIII was this post.
last updated: 6/8/18 11:05 PM
contact: alex63 at bigfoot dot com
40 years, 40 albums
why this is called close your eyes
Youre not logged in ... Login
Another phantastic release from 1991 I only discovered a couple of days ...
by alex63 @ 6/8/18 11:05 PM
LOL nö eigentlich nicht. Ich antworte mal vorsichtig: g.co
by liuea @ 6/8/18 10:08 PM
Danke, nach fast 15 Jahren nun also die zweite Antwort einer Frau. ...
by alex63 @ 6/8/18 7:06 PM
sorry only in german
hier aus weiblicher sicht je nach lebensalter: erst erwachen, dann desinteresse, heulanfälle, ...
by liuea @ 6/8/18 4:02 PM
Post-coital melancholy is just bad sex
The phrase 'Post coitum omne animal triste est, sive gallus et mulier' ...
by Kineseas @ 6/8/18 2:20 AM
“That's my advice if anything terrible ever happens to you: Form a ...
by alex63 @ 4/30/17 6:47 PM
03/02 GIANT SAND, F, Brotfabrik..............
by alex63 @ 3/30/17 1:56 PM
Tom Tom Club - Genius of Love
Whatchu gonna do when you get out of jail?I'm gonna have some ...
by alex63 @ 3/30/17 1:51 PM
03/02 GIANT SAND, F, Brotfabrik.............
aloof from inspiration
an aquarium drunkard
the art of noise NEW
the blue in the air
egg city radio
eyes that can see in the dark
i love music
an idiot's guide to dreaming
motel de moka
one faint deluded smile
organissimo jazz forums
the perfumed garden
said the gramophone
silence is a rhythm too
vain, selfish & lazy
music (DE, FR)
le musterkoffer musikstrom
die zeit - musik
open chess diary
the ringdahl family NEW
wood s lot
dichtheit und wahrung
(i think) he was a journalist
jacks blog NEU
meine kleine stadt
pêle-mêle dans ma tête
reisenotizen aus der realität
with or without words...
the absintheur's journal
buked & scorned
dd denkt laut
ja zu aa
the mystical beast
sofa. rites de passage
sound of the suburbs
spoilt victorian child
three hundred bars