Off to Japan I go

Today, I am skipping my Japanese language class and heading to the airport. I am taking up a position at Kyoto University under a JSPS Invitational Fellowship. I am working with the team in the Resilience Unit there on a project studying the design of fiscal policy for building national resilience using Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) principles. Resilience is an important part of the degrowth and deep adaptation agenda and I will spend some months there working on with other researchers. The – Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) is ‘Japan’s sole independent funding agency dedicated to the advancement of science’ and is overseen by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. I am very privileged to receive one of the invitations. So from tomorrow I will be in Kyoto and depending on commitments my blog posts might be a little less regular although I think I will be able to continue the usual output. Now, it is time to put my Tuesday languages class into action – along with Google translate! Some travelling music follows.

Travelling music

First, is the very short (1:15) track – From the Rue Vilin – by one of my favourite Post Minimalist composers, Max Richter, which came out of his – Songs From Before – album in 2006.

This is a very beautiful piece.

As is the case with most post minimalist pieces, and Max Richter’s playing in general, it appears to be relatively simple in construction. But try playing it on piano – it is a deceptively difficult composition to get the timing just right.

Try to match the sounds of the composition with the actual street in the 20ème in Paris, which inspired the music.

The next track – I’m Still Waiting – is one of the first released by the Wailers under its Studio One recordings and produced by Clement Coxsone Dodd

It was on the 1965 release – The Wailing Wailers – accompanied by The Soul Brothers. It was marketed as “Jamaica’s Top-rated Singing Sensations”.

The Wailers were of course Bunny Livingston, Bob Marley and Peter “Tosh” McIntosh.

The Soul Brothers who were the Studio One house band and featured on many of the 1960s rock steady/ska/reggae recordings were mainly jazz players trying to earn extra cash.

They were originally the Skatalites (Roland Alphonso, Don Drummond, Tommy McCook, Jackie Mittoo, Lester Sterling, and Lloyd Brevett) but became the Sound Dimension in 1965 when trombonist Don Drummond went to prison for murdering his wife. Other musicians also joined the ‘group’.

The tremelo on the guitar is beautiful. A true rock steady classic.

Here is the original album cover.


A day of travel and music.

Back to the grind tomorrow. All the best.

That is enough for today!

(c) Copyright 2022 William Mitchell. All Rights Reserved.

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Congratulations Bill, have a nice trip to Japan and a wonderful stay for your research work at the University of Kyoto!

  2. At least you will be in what I understand is Japan’s cultural center. MrShigemitsu can correct me if i am wrong.

  3. Hi Bill,
    Wishing you all the best.
    I am writing this more than two weeks after your arrival in Japan and after I searched your website to find out whether your blog had stopped.
    I have missed getting your email notifications of your new posts.
    I hope the email notifications will restart
    Regards Ken

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