Shakuhachi virtuoso Akikazu Nakamura formed the group Kokoo with koto players Michiyo Yagi and Maki Isogai in 1995. Although their sound is diverse, they exclusively play the Japanese traditional instruments shakuhachi (bamboo flute) and koto (horizontal harp). By incorporating Nakamura's own unique style of exploiting beat with elements of rock, jazz improvisation, Western classical music, and the experimental avant garde, Kokoo transcends traditional Japanese music. In 2005, Nakamura's album on traditional repertoire, The World of Zen Music from Hokuriku~Sanya~ was awarded the Prize for Excellence in the Record Category of the 60th Arts Festival sponsored by the Agency of Cultural Affairs of Japan.
Part of the Arts of Japan Celebration
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