- About Us
Music of the world comes to the island: Trio YO makes first stop on U.S. tour
It has been said that music is the universal language.
Wherever you are in the world, a bass line is still a bass line and a quarter note requires the same treatment whether you speak Russian, Mandarin or English.
Music has been a part of human culture for almost as long as we have recorded history, and possibly longer. With the possible exception of food, the enjoyment of music is the single most unifying factor of the human condition.
Bainbridge Island music lovers will get the chance to experience the international appeal of music first-hand when the universal music group Trio YO performs at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 1 at Grace Church. It’s the first stop on their latest U.S. tour.
The group is lead by Ty Burhoe, who is widely recognized as one of the greatest tabla players in the world.
Burhoe has been featured on many soundtracks for film and DVD, including the Academy Award-winning documentary, “Born into Brothels.” He has worked with numerous celebrity musicians including Walter Becker of Steely Dan, Rick Alan of Def Leppard and Jon Anderson of Yes, to name a few. Burhoe has performed in prestigious halls around the world including Carnegie Hall, the Sydney Opera House and the Royal Festival Hall in London.
“The name itself, YO, means world community,” Burhoe explained.
“On an ever deeper level it means ‘this world, this time, this moment.’ Which is perfect for us because we each have studied for many years with legendary maestros of each of our traditions and have learned the old, deep paths and yet we all grew up in the modern world and have been heavily influenced by the world and people of today.”
The other two members of the trio are Yutaka Oyama, one of the world’s leading shamisen players, and Akihisa Kominato, a celebrated maestro of the shakuhachi. Both artists have been featured on several movie soundtracks and CD recordings.
“I am very excited to bring the trio YO to Bainbridge Island,” said Jonathan Crane, owner of Crane Drums, music producer and friend of the group.
“This will be the first stop of their U.S. tour, fresh from Tokyo,” Crane added. “I have been working with Ty for several years producing concerts with him and for him. Once a year for the past four years he has come to Bainbridge, bringing with him some amazing artists.”
The concert will feature historically inspired music with a modern twist from Japan and India, and will also give audience members a chance to see these highly skilled musicians play difficult and traditional instruments.
“Kominato is deeply respected throughout the world for his unique ability to fully improvise in the moment on such a difficult instrument [as the shakuhachi],” Crane said.
The shakuhachi is a Japanese end-blown flute. Thought to have been introduced to China in the 8th century, it is traditionally made from bamboo.
Burhoe agrees that keeping tradition alive and relevant is a goal of the trio.
“What we bring to an evening concert, in a sense, is centuries of tradition which we display in our solos,” Burhoe said. “The music itself is very passionate and colorful. Each of our instruments has a full range of expressive tones which call out to the emotions of the human heart. We cover musical styles from calm, meditative ballads to rocking pieces which ignite and excite our audiences.”
To reflect the different moods and intentions of their music, the trio even go so far as to change wardrobe midway through the performance.
“We will do the first half of the show in traditional dress from Japan and India,” Burhoe said. “Then, the second half, in casual modern street clothes. The music will reflect these styles.”
Burhoe says there is no doubting the universal appeal of music, and it’s ability to cross cultures and generations.
“Put simply, music is the intentional impact of sound waves on the fluid chemicals of the human body, emotions,” he said.
“All people from all times in history have used, abused and shared in music. Music is a medium of vibration which has a clear effect upon each person and upon entire cultures,” Burhoe said.
Crane said that it’s events like this that make Bainbridge Island such a culturally rich place to live.
“I produce many events on the island and I am very excited about this one in particular,” Crane said. “This is going to be a wonderful event for our community as it will be a show that ties together culture and music. It is very easy for me to talk them up, because I know how good they are.”
For more information about YO and their upcoming U.S. tour, or to purchase tickets for a show, visit www.tyburhoe.com.