Monday, December 11, 2017

Japanese film: Ryuichi Sakamoto: CODA

Post-Fukushima: Sakamoto is playing on a beaten-up piano…
Playing on the corpse of
a drowned piano...
Sakamoto: It’s the corpse of a drowned piano. A black wall of water came over the pine trees. The room was flooded, the piano drowned. But some sound still comes out of it.
Narrator: Then there was the MRI.
Sakamoto: Stage 3, throat cancer. The treatment has extended my life. I don’t know how many years I have left, 20 or 10, or maybe there’ll be a relapse, but I want to be able to work.
Narrator: Music.
Sakamoto: And incorporate natural sounds too: leaves, rain, birdsong. Beginning on the piano, then recording using all these objects here, windows, bottles, buckets, cymbals, violin and computer.

A coda is a concluding movement. We hope that this documentary CODA, is not a finale for Ryuichi Sakamoto, that he will give us more memorable music. None of us know how long we have. But Sakamoto is an inspiration when he is determined to produce “meaningful work I’m not ashamed to leave behind.”

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