I make three models of the shakuhachi - YUNG, CHIKUSING, and EARTH models. I also provide refurbished vintage and modern Japanese made shakuhachi I call Tensei shakuhachi.
YUNG Model - for professionals
The YUNG shakuhachi is made to today’s standard in Japan for shakuhachi used for traditional or modern music. The tuning set at A=442 (today’s standard in Japan). Yung shakuhachi are made to play with fixed pitched instruments such as a piano so any experienced player can play with other musicians in multiple contexts. Each flute is custom made for the player’s approach or understanding of their particular school of shakuhachi music. I can make Kinko Ryu, Dokyoku and professional level Jinashi according to how it was shown to me by Kinya Sogawa. These flutes can also be used for Tozan Ryu and Minyo. Because of the demand and waiting period, YUNG Model Shakuhachi are made to order only. The wait is about one year from the time of order to delivery.
The YUNG hanko is also used on my CHIKUSING Models.
Chikusing Model - for Honkyoku
Chikusing shakuhachi are made to play Zen Honkyoku music but are technically proficient to play in pitch at 440 - 442hz for professional musical applications also. The timbre is more “hollow” or “bambooey”. Chikusing is a Chinese and Japanese word that translates literally as hollow bamboo. But, the connotation means “transplanted” in America. The Chikusing method is an approach I developed while studying making both the Hocchiku all natural style along with the modern Jiari style. It utilizes the shape of the natural bore but with my Spot Tuning Method applied to select resonance spots to enhance playability and balance. This produces a quality Zen instrument with tone holes that flows smoothly from one to another and with relatively equal or dynamic volume - from a whisper to a scream. Chikusing flutes can be made in lengths ranging from 1.8 (D) - 3.0 (bass F). The wait is about 1-3 months from the time of order to delivery.
Earth Model - for solo meditative solo playing
Earth shakuhachi are usually all natural flutes with very little or no bore manipulation. They play very well in A at 440hz - 442hz or in between pitches. These flutes are well in tune in themselves and able to play a variety of simple music. EARTH Models have a warm and lively tone when blown with a beginner’s breath. The main difference is that EARTH flutes do not have the dynamic range of the higher grade instruments that can take the more forceful breath of experience players. The wait is usually 7 - 10 days from the time of order to delivery.
Tensei line - refurbished
I come across damaged Japanese made flutes every now and then and take the unique opportunity to refurbish them. I call these the TENSEI Line. Tensei translates as rebirth through music in Japanese. All Tensei flutes go through rigorous testing to ensure that they are solid playing instruments in the way the original maker intended. All hand made bamboo flutes are unique sound and old flutes even more so. With deep respect for the original craftsman’s work, I try to maintain a high level of integrity by not adjusting the tuning unless there is a real technical problem. I am proud to be able to provide these wonderful instruments a new lease on life.