LIVE REPORTFIELD OF HEAVEN7/30 SAT
KYOTO JAZZ SEXTET feat.Takeo Moriyama
A legendary collaboration graces Fuji Rock
Field of Heaven is the most mystical stage at Fuji Rock; you walk through the forest as the paths get narrower, cross the stream and even walk along the boardwalk full of shimmering art installations hanging from the trees – all before you reach the stage that is engulfed in nature. So much so that just sitting down for this set left me with dozens of bug bites – but that didn’t stop me from enjoying this iconic set.
Kyoto Jazz Sextet opened with “Father Forest” featuring legendary Japanese jazz drummer, Takeo Moriyama. Upon finishing the first song, MC Shu Okino introduced Moriyama and had him say a word. “I didn’t know what Fuji Rock was long ago, but I’ve wanted to be here since I found out about it…I might be the oldest performer here this year,” he said in a frail voice that is a mismatch for his steady drumming hands.
Moriyama, who is 77-years-old, has been playing drums since he was in his late teens. He has toured around the world with notable jazz bands, as well as starting his own groups based in Nagoya. He has recorded and performed with severable notable jazz artists from all around the world. His most recent project is this one, with Kyoto Jazz Sextet.
Over the hour-long set, the group performed the following pieces: “Father Forest”, “Forest Mode”, “Kaze (wind)”, “Sunrise”, and “Watarase”. Do you see a theme here? I can only imagine this to be intentional; to set the mood for the environment they were playing in and to call in the energy from the elements surrounding all of us.
There’s no denying that all the performers in project are impeccable; from trumpet solos done in one breath to piano solos that made me dizzy, all while Moriyama kept a steady beat the whole time. A truly legendary collaboration that could only be heard in the middle of the forest, this one was for the books.
[Photo: 10 All photo]