Takushī! – [a brief commentary]

click here to listen to Takushī! – [redirects to YouTube in a separate window]

Takushī! Is the second of three short sketches uploaded to YouTube during the first week of April 2021. It continues the theme of Japanese transportation, this time alluding to the taxi drivers of Kakegawa city, near Hamamatsu.

As before, the music gives respectful nods to Uehara Hiromi, her group ‘Sonicbloom’, as well as the artist Inaizumi Lyn and producer Suzue Machiko. 

This time however, I altered the instrumentation slightly to afford a NI Komplete 11 Scarbee A200 keyboard solo, using the preset ‘Breakfast in America’ – thereby combining the Japanese influences with (at least) the keyboard sound of Supertramp(!) who I enjoy listening to on a regular basis.

Although the track itself in A Major, it is dissonant throughout to provoke continuation. For example, the music incorporates frequent use of flattened 6th and 7th degrees throughout the introduction as can be seen in fig. A below.

[fig. A – Introduction to Takushī!]

Takushi! also midly references Tokaido Time, in the sense that again there is harmonic substitution juxtaposed with a consistent pedal note in this case, G natural. Basically, each chord is similar but changes slightly! Afterall, not every Taxi you get into is exactly the same!

Bar 10 sees the introduction of the melody (see fig.B below) which was doubled in octaves for the recording. However, it could be played without doubling using just the right hand and the looped backing in the left hand if there were only 1 keyboard player in a live scenario.

[fig. B – piano melody, bars 10 – 17]

The backing loops again after the tune’s exposition and the texture reduces to a solitary piano improvisation ontop of the bass and drums. There is an exchange with the so-called ‘Breakfast in America’ Scarbee A200 which leads to a scalic bridge session and finally a recapitulation of the original theme. The Scarbee A200 rounds off the track with some warm chording. I deliberately close the track on the subdominant (D Major) to allude to the final movement, “Home Liner” which will be uploaded in the near future.


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