Yao Gongbai

The Art of Yao Gongbai
World Music Library 5232


  1. Da Hujia - "The Hujia Melody"
  2. Cuge - "The Song of Cu-land"
  3. Zhepan Yin - "Elegy on the Banks of a river"
  4. Huaxu Yin - "The Dream of Huaxu-land"
  5. Qiuyue Zhao Maoding, Shanzong Si Youren - "As the autumn moon shines on a bower, I remember my old friend contemplating the mountains"
  6. Wang You - "Forget Sorrow"
  7. Wu Ye Ti - "The Crow Sings at Night"
  8. Guangling San - "Guangling Folk Strains"
  9. Guguan Yushen - "The Lonely Mansion"
  10. He Ming Jiugao
  11. Jiu Kuang - "The Drinking Song"

Instrument: Song Dynasty

Playing time: 73'

Recording date: February, 1997 (Shanghai)

Yao Gongbai (b.1948) is the son of Yao Bingyan, the famous expert on reconstructing "lost" qin pieces from score. Yao Gongbai has achieved his own sense of rhythm and diction in the style of Zhe school, often with a probing quality. Although several of these pieces derive from reconstructions, they are internalized well, especially as second-generation performances. The timbre here is very aggressive, maybe even harsh, quite possibly due to the recording equipment. The originality of this performance makes it increasingly enjoyable over time, making this one of the most striking programs on the list.

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T. M. McComb