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about

666 is the number of The Beast according to both the New Testament and the multi-platinum album "Number of the Beast" by Iron Maiden. This piece is named "Half of the Beast" for both musical and numerological reasons. This piece is number 9 in the series, and 9=3x3x3, or 333 which is half of 666. Musically, this was written on the 2.8 Taimu which is, there's no way around it, a Beast of a flute. This piece is focused on Chi as the center point of most phrases, and this is a very resonant note on this flute as well as most Taimu. Therefore, in terms of training and improving your sound on Taimu, I advocate playing more Chi than any other note for a few months or years, which is similar to the recommendation of "blowing Ro" on common shakuhachi.

Musical Details:

The chant influence in this piece is strong, but much more Gregorian and Tibetan style chant than any other, as these are the types that I have listened to the most. The long tone aspect is strong also, and the line between these two influences is blurry: you can say that it has to do with slow, subtle melodic direction that chant can have as opposed to free standing long tones that do not need to lead anywhere. Besides the focus on the note Chi mentioned above, this piece is mostly just an intuitive unfolding of long tone, chant-like phrases. Like some gospel music and some honkyoku, this piece can increase in speed and volume slightly around the 2/3-of-the-way-through point and then slow down and mellow out again towards the end.

credits

from Mukyoku: New Compositions for Taimu Shakuhachi, released October 10, 2010
Cornelius Boots: composition, performance on 2.8 Taimu Shakuhachi made by Ken Mujitsu LaCosse.

www.corneliusboots.com
www.mujitsu.com/mukyoku

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Cornelius Boots - Solo Shakuhachi 尺八 San Francisco, California

Avant Nature Music. Bamboo Gospel & Buddhist Blues: from hymns to heavy metal. New music for standard & bass (Taimu) shakuhachi, the robust woodwind of Japan.

Cornelius Boots is a leading creative shakuhachi composer-performer, active internationally in woodwinds since 1990. A Shihan (master) in the lineage of Watazumido and ex-orchestral/rock bass clarinetist, jazz guy and bandleader.
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