Vocabulary Gagaku> Ancient court music from China and Korea. It is the oldest type of Japanese, traditional music. Biwagaku> Music played with the Biwa, a kind of guitar with four strings. Nohgaku>Music played during Noh performances. It basically consists of a chorus, the Hayashi flute, the Tsuzumi drum, and other instruments.
Sokyoku> Music played with the Koto, a type of zither with 13 strings. Later also accompanied by Shamisen andShakuhachi. Shakuhachi> Music played with the Shakuhachi, a bamboo flute that is about 55 cm long. The name of the flute is its length expressed in shaku an old Japanese unit of length.
Shamisenongaku> Music played with the Shamisen, a kind of guitar with only three strings. Kabuki and Bunraku performances are accompanied by the shamisen. Minyo> The term for regional music, or folk songs is minyo.
FYI Kabuki was started by Izumo no Okunis all-femaletroupe around 1603. These women were prostitutes aswell as performers, available for hire after the show,which has always been common (and still is in manynightclubs, apparently).
FYI It took in folk dance styles (performed sexily), andelements from Noh and Bunraku. There was troubleand violence with the admirers of different troupesfighting, and the government therefore decreed kabukicould be performed by boys only from about 1629.
FYI Sadly, there was the same sexual element as withwomen, and in 1652 it became men only, which itstayed until the late 19th Century, and many troupesare still entirely male. This led to the onnagata, femaleimpersonators. Many lived as women full time (is thisthe first method acting?), and became fashion leaders.Homosexual liaisons were common.
Kayokyoku After the war the general term for popular songs thatcame into usage was kayokyoku. In general,kayokyoku is the music somewhere between westernpop and enka, which features strong Japanese andAsian characteristics.
ENKA The term enka came into use from the early 1970s. Itwas a slow type of kayokyoku, heavily influenced byJapanese elements. Enka is sometimes called the Heartof JapanIts sentimental lyrics concentrate on themes such as theseparation of lovers, memories, despair and hope.Singers still usually wear kimono, its mostcharacteristic vocal style being the warbling crescendoat the end of sentences.
CHINDON -1910Hired for commercials civilized music Used to demonstrate their westernization used militarybands at ceremonies to open railroads and banks. Accompanying the chindon are western instruments, a biggoros drum (from the French gros) plus clarinet andsaxophone, played usually by men, that gradually replacedthe Japanese shamisen (lute) as the main instrument.
Japanese Pop music Inspired by The Beatles in the 1960s. It uses apronunciation that sounds more similar toEnglish than other styles of Japanese music.This is different from another type of popularJapanese music called kayōkyoku. Today, theterm "J-pop" covers many popular genres ofJapanese music.
Rock music remained a relativelyunderground music genre in the early1970s in Japan.In the 1990s, the term J-pop came to referto all Japanese popular songs exceptenka.
Chaku-uta-In December 2002, the digital-downloadmarket for ringtone songs ( 着うたchaku-uta) was created by mobile-phonecompany.
Japanese rock has been called "J-rock"and their most popular bands right noware "X Japan" and "Gazzette".Japanese hip hop and urban pop - firstdecade of the 21st century