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Limited vinyl LP pressing including six page insert. Kagura is a thousand-year-old form of Japanese Shinto sacred music and dance, accompanying the chanting of myths; the word "kagura" can be translated as "god-entertainment". Passed down over countless generations, the music is rare and recordings even rarer. Shigeo Tanaka was a master of the yumi (bow), an uncommon single-string percussion instrument, which is a true bow: arrows are fired off at the end of each ceremony to fend off evil spirits. The instrument is difficult to play; it's hard to draw out the proper sound and maintain the rhythm. Yumi Kagura is the oldest of all the various forms of Kagura. The Tanaka family, based in rural Joge-cho, Hiroshima prefecture, has passed down this yumi kagura tradition for hundreds of years; this lineage continues to this day in the person of his daughter Ritsuko Tanaka. The Joge-cho yumi kagura, which prays for family well-being, bountiful crops and good fortune, was designated an Important Intangible Cultural Property in 1971. Previously available only on a ridiculously obscure 1991 cassette release, Yumi-kagura is the first collaborative release by EM Records and Riyo Mountains, a Japanese folk song research team.