utai
noh-chant, the vocal part of noh drama; it includes the melodic parts as well as the spoken lines; utai has been loved as an independent performing art since the Muromachi Period (1392-1573)
uta
song
ji-uta
- local (folk) song of the Kamigata area (Osaka, Kyoto and Kobe) - music originally composed for shamisen
kamigata-uta
folk song of the Kamigata area (Osaka, Kyoto and Kobe), derived from the popular music of blind itinerant musicians (SAWAZUMI KENGYO, YANAGAWA KENGYO -1680, YATSUHASI KENGYO 1614-1685).
Kengyo
kengyo is an honorary title (highest rank) given to blind musician masters
sugata
form, shape
mai
dance
mai-sugata
dance figure, dance form
shamisen
three string instrument (lute)  
koto
thirteen stringed table zither 
kokyû
a bowed version of the shamisen
yamato-gaku
the most sustained effort to develop music from within the traditional world (itchu bushi as the basis for its singing style, combined with some of the strong points of kato kushi and miyazono bushi)
ogie-bushi
created by OGIE ROYOU - a style of singing that split off from nagauta in the late 18th century as a pure concert form, almost a form of chamber music with it's quiet, intimate and delicate sound.
gidayu-bushi
largest narrative genre; TAKEMOTO GIDAYU (1651-1714) created strongly narrative music for puppet theater (later called bunraku) of such a distinctive technique, that he gave his name to this style of music. As time went on and especially with the music for the shamisen,  musical aspects became more and more elaborate. Compared to other schools of joruri (ballad drama), the strong narrative aspect of gidayu is marked particularly by its characters' clear expression of feelings, and the accompanying shamisen uses strong tone coloration in the low notes
naga-uta
'long song' - lyrical style of shamisen music; the single most important style and oldest form of pure kabuki music.  It was founded in Edo period (around 1740).
ko-uta
'short song' - one of the most popular varieties of popular music
joruri
chanted narration with shamisen accompaniment; it originated in the narratives of the Muromachi period (1392-1573), taking as its material the romance of the young samurai Ushiwakamaru and princess Joruri; later it became a generic term for the many types of narrative shamisen music; genres were typically named after founding musician of the school; new genres developed each time a pupil deviated from his teacher; each genre distinguished by vocal style, type of shamisen (and bridge, plectrum, etc.).  
itchu/Icchyu-bushi 
the style in which MIYAKOJI BUNGO-NO-JO (1660-1740) was trained and which influenced his bungo-bushi style
kato-bushi
one of the oldest Edo narrative styles, emphasis on domestic tragedies
bungo-bushi
stories of love affairs ending in double suicides; bungo-bushi was introduced into Edo by MIYAKOJI BUNGO-NO-JO (1660-1740) and later banned by the Edo city magistrate as a threat to public order.
miyazono-bushi 
founded by MIYAKOJI SONOHACHI, a student of BUNGO-NO-JO
Edo
the old name for Tokyo 
Geisha
gei=art, sha=person - a woman trained and skilled in the traditional arts of Japan such as dance, music, singing, flower arrangement, tea ceremony 
Maiko
mai=dance, ko=child - an apprentice Geisha who must undergo a period of training in the traditional arts of Japan that takes around 5 years before she becomes a Geisha. 

back to glossary
back to kamigata-mai