Ko Ishikawa

Recorded on 8th August, 2010 at the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon, Portugal.

Sho (Japanese bamboo mouth organ)

Ko Ishikawa is a professional “Sho” player and has been a member of the Gagaku ensemble “Reigakusha” since 1987. Born in Tokyo, 1963, he studied Sho and Gagaku music with masters Mayumi Miyata, Hideaki Bunno and Sukeyasu Shiba. His performances of both traditional and new music for Sho have received high acclaim and he has made numerous appearances both as a soloist and ensemble member, performing in major festivals  worldwide. Ko Ishikawa plays in Otomo Yoshihide’s “Cathode” and has worked with Gene Coleman and in Evan Parker’s Electro-Acoustic Ensemble a.o.


Recording Notes

A one-shot wax cylinder recording made during a break in a soundcheck by the Evan Parker Electro-Acoustic Ensemble, in preparation for a concert in the Jazz Em Agosto Festival 2010 in Lisbon. The location was the outdoor stage in the garden of the Gulbenkian Foundation and one can hear very faint voices in the background as the technicians set up the equipment. The blank cylinder surface was uneven and patchy, resulting in a lot of ‘wow’ or wavering of pitch and sudden dynamic changes, but the effect is quite musical and gives the sound a fragile quality. The recording was played back as an accompanying ‘ancient echo’ to Ko’s live playing during the evening concert.