BRIAN TAIRAKU RITCHIE
Shakuhachi Club SFO
Brian Tairaku Ritchie
THE JAPANESE BAMBOO FLUTE
*A BENEFIT FOR THE
$10 DONATION AT DOOR
JUNE 14, 8PM
141 11th St. @Mission
wanted to thank everyone who attended the benefit
shakuhachi concert on Tuesday with Brian Tairaku Ritchie, Kiku Day and
Shakuhachi Club SFO.
The turnout was fantastic. The vibe was positive. We raised plenty of
funds for the ARDS Foundation and we all had the opportunity to hear
some inspiring music! Thank you all so much for being part of it and
for making these events possible!
All the best,
out the concert
Questions? Email us
call: 415 242-0919
Brian Tairaku Ritchie
studied shakuhachi for seven years
in New York City with James Nyoraku Schlefer. Ritchie achieved the rank
of Jun Shihan (teaching license) in March of 2003. Along with the
license he received the professional name “Tairaku” which means “Big
Music." Although he has been playing shakuhachi for a comparatively
short period of time, Brian has already released two CD’s of shakuhachi
music, “Purple Field” (Honkyoku) and “Shakuhachi Club NYC” (World Jazz).
shakuhachi activities, Brian tours
and records with Violent Femmes,
a band he started in 1981. The Femmes
have played in over 40 countries. Their accomplishments include sold
out performances at Carnegie Hall, Royal Albert Hall, Woodstock ’94 and
the northernmost rock concert in history at the magnetic north pole.
They have numerous gold and platinum records to their name.
MP3 selections from Brian Tairaku Ritchie's albums
From "Shakuhachi Club NYC"
Most of the flutes you will hear at the concert are an
ancient style of shakuhachi called ji-nashi.
Ji-nashi shakuhachi are made with an emphasis on the individuality of
each piece of bamboo. Unlike the more popular modern shakuhachi with a
filled, precise bore, ji-nashi shakuhachi are made using the natural
shape of the bamboo bore wherever possible. This deceptively simple
design gives them a rich, resonant, wild and windy tone. Although they
require an astute receptivity to make and play, the effort is worth it
as they are physically satisfying to play and hear.
Brian will be performing with a number of ji-nashi shakuhachi made by
flute maker Ken LaCosse. Ken has been making shakuhachi since 1988.
Beginning with modern shakuhachi, he now makes the ji-nashi style
exclusively because of its distinct, challenging tonal possibilities.
Ken and Brian have worked closely developing a unique style of large,
expressive, ji-nashi shakuhachi called Taimu (The Big Nothing). They
are both dedicated to promoting the resurgence of the ji-nashi
Day is a ji-nashi shakuhachi player from Copenhagen, Denmark
with roots from Japan, America, Russia and Ireland. Born in Harajuku,
Tokyo, Japan, she moved to Denmark at an early age.
She studied piano from the age of three, and flute from the age of
fifteen. She was accepted at the Royal Academy of Music in Copenhagen,
but chose instead to study honkyoku, the Zen Buddhist shakuhachi
repertoire of the mendicant monks, komusô, with Okuda Atsuya in
After eleven years of honkyoku studies and traveling on all the
continents in the world (save Antarctica), Kiku decided to move back to
Europe, first to Switzerland, then to England where she completed her
BA in Ethnomusicology with First Class Honours at SOAS (School or
Oriental and African Studies), University of London. There she studied
improvisation with Clive Bell, composition with Daniel Chua at King’s
College, London. She has collaborated with the London Symphony
Orchestra in an event at the Royal Festival Hall and performed at the
Royal National Theatre with Clive Bell.
Kiku has recently completed her MFA in Performance at Mills College,
Oakland, California, where she focused on contemporary music and
improvisation. She has studied performance and composition with such
teachers as Fred Frith, Jon Raskin, Joëlle Léandre, and
Alvin Curran, and musicology with Nalini Gwynne and David Bernstein.
She currently performs in a trio with Pascal Marzan and Andras Vingh,
another trio with Kanoko Nishi and Anne LeBaron, and a duo with Clive
Bell, and has performed in many venues in Europe, New Zealand, Japan
Kiku will begin a PhD program jointly at SOAS and Royal Academy of
Music in London from September 2005, where she will explore the
possibilities of the ji-nashi shakuhachi playing new music. The title
of her PhD project is: Remembrance of Things Past: The Ancient
Shakuhachi in Contemporary Contexts.
Scheduled performances include: Improvisation with Henry Kaiser
(guitar) and Damon Smith (contra bass), Oakland, July 2005,
Improvisation with Pascal Marzan (guitar) and Toshi Makihara
(percussion), Budapest, July 2005, Is Arti Festival in Lithuania,
November 2005, where she will play Takemitsu Tôru’s Eclipse with
biwa player, Nishihara Kakushin.
Suginami Aikikai San Francisco,
California started as "Skidrow Dojo" in the back of a photo
studio on Sixth Street in San Francisco February 1986.
A group of
artists asked James Friedman to teach them
self-defense shortly after
the violent murder of a loved one. Classes began in the shadow of
tragedy, and Aikido in a small way helped heal the suffering these people
were going through. Beginning as a club for that group of around
ten friends, the dojo soon outgrew the Sixth Street studio and relocated
to 759 Harrison Street in San francisco, California where it remained
for three years.
1989, San Franicisco earthquake, James moved the dojo a few blocks away
Stillman Street, and it stayed at that location for ten years.
In 1999 we moved to our present and
final location at 141 11th
Mission and Howard streets, San Francisco, California.
the Dojo has hosted many of the world's highest
Aikido instructors, including Kato Sensei, Nishio Sensei, Anno Sensei,
Sugawara Sensei, Terry Dobson Sensei, Cottier Sensei.
In 1996 Kato Hiroshi
Sensei was welcomed to San Francisco, and shortly thereafter
"Skidrow Dojo" was renamed Suginami Akikai
and became an official branch
of Suginami Aikikai Tokyo. Kato Sensei is our Dojo's official
connection to the world headquarters - Hombu Dojo in
In 1986 we
started with two classes per week and ten students. That quickly
progressed, and presently we have 24 adult
classes per week, 3 kids' classes
per week, two classes per week for mentally and physically handicapped
adults, as well as Thai Kickboxing.
*The ARDS Foundation
Foundation is a National
Not for Profit Organization composed of a
group of individuals who have been personally affected by ARDS. We are
dedicated to increasing public awareness, education, and financial
assistance to those engaged in medical research.
respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS)
is defined as an acute
process, which results in moderate to severe loss of lung function. The
most common causes of ARDS are pneumonia, sepsis (an overwhelming
infection in the body), aspiration of fumes, food or stomach contents
into the lung, and trauma. It often requires mechanical ventilation
during a drug induced coma. There are about 150,000 cases reported per
year in the U.S. The mortality rate is approximately 50 percent.
There is a continuing need for
further ARDS research. Please help support the ARDS Foundation by
attending this concert of talented and generous musicians.