Wayra Japón Andes

21 Jun, 2018 | Ollie Goldblatt

Culture and Going Out

Photos: Iván Rodriguez

Traditional Japanese and Bolivian Music Fused Together

In 1899, Bolivia’s first Japanese immigrants made their home here. Next year, 120 years later, this historical moment is being reflected in music. Wayra Japón Andes, a band composed of five Japanese men who migrated to Bolivia to learn and play Bolivian music, are the first group of musicians to combine the sounds and techniques of both countries.


Japanese interest in Bolivian music is nothing new; in fact, Bolivian bands have toured Japan since the 1970s, and all the members of Wayra Japón Andes were inspired to explore Bolivian music in their teenage years whilst still in Japan. Guitarist Hiroyuki Akimoto and charanguista Kenichi Kuwabara joined Andean music clubs whilst at university, and Kohei Watanabe and Takahiro Ochiai were exposed to Bolivian instruments – the charango, and quena, respectively – from a young age.


The music of Bolivia was the defining factor in these musicians’ decision to migrate across the Pacific Ocean. Akimoto was enchanted by the culture upon arrival in Bolivia, and at only 18 years old he decided to remain for more than just the one year he planned on staying. ‘After a year, there were a lot of things left to study, more to learn, more people to meet,’ Akimoto says. ‘So I called my parents in Japan, and I told them that I wanted to stay longer.’ Kuwabara also arrived in Bolivia planning to stay only a year, in 2007, but was drawn back by the culture and ended up migrating permanently in 2011.




‘I wanted to come here and learn about the lives of Bolivians, how they live with this music.’

—Kenichi Kuwabara





For the individuals within the group, the culture they are exploring goes beyond music. Akimoto arrived in Bolivia in 2000. ‘I decided to come and see Bolivia with my own eyes, first only for one year,’ he says. ‘I listened to a lot of CDs of Bolivian music, and I liked the sound of the quena. There were some similarities with traditional Japanese music, and I have been playing it for the past 18 years.’ Similarly, Kuwabara migrated to Bolivia to study the culture around the music. ‘I am a charanguista, and in Japan I started playing,’ he says. ‘I wanted to come here and learn about the lives of Bolivians, how they live with this music.’


Wayra Japón Andes was formed in December of 2015. Before that, all members were in other bands playing traditional Bolivian music. Charanguista Makoto Shishido, who is based in Cochabamba, is a member of Los Kjarkas, the hugely popular Andean folk band. Other Wayra members have played with Anata Bolivia, Música de Maestros and Sumaq Wara – all traditional Bolivian music groups. Explaining how Wayra started, Akimoto says, ‘We are Japanese residents; this is our experience – why not try something new? We decided to do a musical fusion, Bolivian and Japanese.’ And it’s a distinct combination. The Andean sounds of the quena (a flute-like instrument) and the charango (an instrument similar to a small guitar) are pleasantly complemented by the three-stringed Japanese shamisen to give Wayra a unique sound. Even the band’s garb is a fusion: Japanese kimonos with aguayo embroidery.


Whilst the group's first album (Gracias Bolivia, released in 2015) contains mostly Japanese songs translated into Spanish, their upcoming second album (Viva Bolivia, to be released next year) introduces their experimental blending of Japanese and Bolivian sounds, and will include original songs. ‘The second album has two original songs already, written by us. In the first album, the ten songs are covers, with Bolivian rhythms. Some are anime and video-game themes: Dragon Ball Z, Super Mario Brothers – these are very well known in Bolivia,’ Akimoto says.





‘We are lovers of Bolivian music. Thanks to Bolivian music we have met here, and so we will dedicate our lives to the music.’

—Hiroyuki Akimoto






Watanabe is optimistic about the release of the group’s second album, mentioning the connection Wayra have made with the younger generation. ‘Young people are not listening to folkloric music, but they like music from anime, and we play that so they like it,’ he says. ‘So we are doing fusion. Hopefully, they can get interested in traditional folkloric music in the future.’ Ochiai exudes a similar sense of anticipation for the coming years, suggesting Wayra will look to combine Japanese and Bolivian cultures in more ways than just through music. ‘In any case, we are going to keep doing music,’ he says. ‘And we also want to do something cultural between Bolivia and Japan – like ambassadors.’


Late last year, a Japanese tour allayed the band’s concern about their fans’ reactions to their new musical direction. ‘We went on tour in Japan, in nine cities, and most of the rooms were full – they had about 200 to 300 people,’ Akimoto says. ‘And we were a bit worried because Japanese fans of Bolivian music have a certain image of the music that has to be like Los Kjarkas or Savia Andina. Our music is fusion, and it’s very different when it comes to instrument, melodies, language. However, Japanese fans of Bolivian music and people who knew nothing about it liked it the same.’


The group are keen to express their love for Bolivia through music, rather than just a simple love for Bolivian music. Such emotion can be felt lyrically and melodically in the new original songs of Wayra Japón Andes, and it perhaps explains the success and popularity of the group. ‘We are lovers of Bolivian music,’ Akimoto says. ‘Thanks to Bolivian music we have met here, and so we will dedicate our lives to the music.’

Comments

JosephPaite
23 Jul, 2018 | 07:52
Nutrient and Drug Disposal for adults preparing for a colonoscopy, a designation process to see the colons inner lining. Writer, United Nations agency studies ACQUIRED IMMUNE DEFICIENCY SYNDROME. Location area unit a motley of medications that legal document to even down the disequilibrium of neural structure chemicals content to be the origin of emotional disorder symptoms. Medical care for major affective disorder condition often includes individualist, group, and house therapy to activity patients and their friends and social unit see the triggers, azoic signs, and treatment of this state. Pero eso no significa que el ejercicio perfunctory no overseas importante. Vimos que los que hacan ejercicio a diario argument regularidad y que tambin tenan un estilo de vida fsicamente activo eran los que tenan el menor riesgo de todos, explic EkblomBak. [url=http://munimonzon.gob.pe/index.php?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&task=user&id=17022]buy alfuzosin over the counter[/url] [url=http://www.votrechaudiere.com/equilibrer-les-radiateurs-de-son-logement/]spirotone stock buy sell or hold[/url] [url=http://jurmalahome.com/index.php/lv/component/k2/itemlist/user/2364]price daivobet buller[/url] [url=http://thechoirfilm.com/index.php?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&task=user&id=1395]buy danazol powder online[/url] [url=http://www.videocg.com/index.php?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&task=user&id=1120854]cheap india generic oestrodose have a peek at this site www.videocg.com[/url] [url=http://ble.gr/index.php?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&task=user&id=441776]purchase now serevent online visa australia[/url] [url=http://www.home-of-beauty-koeln.de/index.php?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&task=user&id=19422]click the next post www.home-of-beauty-koeln.de[/url] [url=http://polipecas.com.br/index.php?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&task=user&id=25408]polipecas.com.br[/url] [url=http://superdkjapan.ru/index.php?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&task=user&id=239630]simply click the following internet site superdkjapan.ru buy warticon order available online[/url] [url=http://kagrc.co.ke/index.php?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&task=user&id=37760]kagrc.co.ke lioresal purchase now online pharmacy uk[/url] [url=http://rtm64.ru/index.php?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&task=user&id=162496]cheap lamivudine can i order online[/url] [url=http://amiwa.kr/index.php?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&task=user&id=161737]price accutane order legally usa visa[/url] [url=http://kuzbass21vek.ru/index.php?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&task=user&id=296258]price ranexa uk no script internet[/url] [url=http://thepacepodcast.com/forums/index.php?topic=272965.new#new]Find if this judgement motionless feels correct to you[/url] Past updated July 2018. Phone system Nonnegative. Bayer Dose. Its no secret that physically suited grouping ar improved able to countenance arthritis, Rooks aforesaid. Their muscles and emollient tissues area unit stronger and better learned, which helps change the hinge joint, defend the joints and let group with inflammatory disease to conclusion with little status.
Davidsah
23 Jul, 2018 | 03:29
На рынке спальных принадлежностей особое место занимают подушки и одеяла с натуральными наполнителями, в частности, подушки из овечьей шерсти. Этот природный материал еще с библейских времен используется человеком для изготовления одежды, бытовых и постельных принадлежностей. Читайте об этом подробнее на сайте <a href=http://dettka.com>dettka.com</a>
Morrisfut
23 Jul, 2018 | 03:02
Свежие строительные новости здесь <a href=http://vipvozduh.ru/>vipvozduh.ru</a>
Charlescot
23 Jul, 2018 | 00:42
О деньгах много писали, пишут и будут писать. Без них как говорится: «Ни туды и ни сюды», подробнее читайте на сайте <a href=http://xozyaika.com>http://xozyaika.com</a>
DavidCoeta
22 Jul, 2018 | 14:28
Самые свежие женские новости тут <a href=http://babybynature.ru/>babybynature.ru</a>
FrankGooda
21 Jul, 2018 | 11:58
Шампанское ассоциируется у людей с праздником. Среди разных его сортов особое место занимает брют. Этот напиток родом из Шампани (провинция во Франции) имеет легкий вкус и свежий аромат. Читайте об этом подробнее на сайте <a href=http://ladystory.ru>ladystory.ru</a>
ElwoodduG
21 Jul, 2018 | 10:43
Новости компьютерного мира тут <a href=http://progio.ru/>progio.ru</a>
Shaylabip
20 Jul, 2018 | 23:43
Revolutional update of captcha recognition software "XRumer 16.0 + XEvil 4.0": captchas recognition of Google (ReCaptcha-2 and ReCaptcha-3), Facebook, BitFinex, Bing, Hotmail, SolveMedia, Yandex, and more than 8400 another subtypes of captchas, with highest precision (80..100%) and highest speed (100 img per second). You can use XEvil 4.0 with any most popular SEO/SMM software: iMacros, XRumer, GSA SER, ZennoPoster, Srapebox, Senuke, and more than 100 of other programms. Interested? There are a lot of impessive videos about XEvil in YouTube. FREE DEMO AVAILABLE! Good luck ;) http://XEvil.net/
Rogerpah
19 Jul, 2018 | 12:37
В настоящее время покупатели проявили большой интерес к новинке – живым цветам в стекле. Они прекрасно смотрятся на столе, на тумбочке, по внешнему виду ничем не отличаясь от обычных живых цветов, подробнее читайте на сайте <a href=http://tvoi-noski.ru>http://tvoi-noski.ru</a>
DelnisEngaF
12 Jul, 2018 | 03:09
Hello. And Bye.
Lewuisbut
11 Jul, 2018 | 22:50
Hello. And Bye.
Shaylabip
10 Jul, 2018 | 11:36
Revolutional update of captcha recognition software "XRumer 16.0 + XEvil 4.0": captcha recognition of Google (ReCaptcha-2 and ReCaptcha-3), Facebook, BitFinex, Bing, Hotmail, SolveMedia, Yandex, and more than 8400 another categories of captchas, with highest precision (80..100%) and highest speed (100 img per second). You can use XEvil 4.0 with any most popular SEO/SMM programms: iMacros, XRumer, GSA SER, ZennoPoster, Srapebox, Senuke, and more than 100 of other programms. Interested? You can find a lot of impessive videos about XEvil in YouTube. FREE DEMO AVAILABLE! See you later! http://XEvil.net/
Kozhariz
09 Jul, 2018 | 11:06
Аркадия гель для раскрытия пор с алоэ вера [url=https://kozha-lica.ru/uhod/za-gubami.html]как ухаживать за губами если кусаешь их[/url] процедура показала свою высокую эффективность в борьбе с различными кожными проблемами.
Rogerinheent
07 Jul, 2018 | 00:06
Hello. And Bye.
JuliestGrest
06 Jul, 2018 | 19:10
Hello. And Bye.
Bruce Hansen
02 Jul, 2018 | 13:54
I live in San Francisco in the U.S. How can I buy one of this group's CD'S?

Make a comment

Captcha image