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Performed by Takinojo Mochizuki

*compatible with BFD2.1 and BFD Eco

Evoking the emotions and grandeur of the Kabuki stage,
the mysteriously profound aesthetic world of Noh theater,
and the reverberations of tapped hand drums
— the true sonic beauty of Japan.

This collection brings you the full richness of 56
Kabuki and Noh percussion instruments and noisemakers,
all expertly performed by Takinojo Mochizuki,
a master traditional Japanese percussionist.

Impeccable software rendering of 56 percussion instruments
used in Kabuki and Noh performances

We recorded 56 essential instruments for this library. From the Kabuki and Noh hayashi flute-and-drums ensemble, we sampled the kotsuzumi (an hourglass-shaped hand drum), the otsuzumi (a large hand drum), the shimedaiko (a pitched drum), the Noh flute, and various kakegoe calls (yo and ho calls). And we selected the most necessary percussive “noisemakers” to any Kabuki performance, including the odaiko (a large drum), daibyoshi (a short-bodied drum), okedoh (a barrel drum), mamedaiko (the “imperial” drum), uchiwadaiko (a “fan” drum), atarigane (a saucer-shaped gong), chanchiki (another round bell), soban (a smaller gong), ekiro (a doughnut-shaped horse bell), music boxes, hontsurigane (a large bell), dora (a gong), and mokugyo (an ornate wooden gong). These have been paired with ashibyoshi foot beats and tsukeuchi sound-effect clappers that add drama to a powerful Kabuki performance.

We were extremely fortunate to have someone as renowned as Takinojo Mochizuki perform these instruments for our recording sessions. Without his precise mastery of these instruments and his vibrant, lively playing style, we could have never reproduced the diverse expressiveness these instruments are capable of.

Kabuki Noh screenshot 01   Kabuki Noh screenshot 05


  • 56 key Japanese percussion instruments
  • Left and right hand hits sampled alternately with up to 99 velocity layers for very natural dynamics and roll expressions 
  • Full range of the expressive kotsuzumi, from crisp hand taps to detailed portamento slides
  • Tsukeuchi sound-effect clappers that heighten the actor’s dramatic poses and the ashibyoshi foot beats matched to dance steps
  • 27 types and 148 variations of kakegoe calls and 20 types and 61 variations of Noh flute phrases that are an irreplaceable part of any performance
  • Well-kept vintage microphones and preamp captured the instruments’ authentic voices
  • All instruments were recorded with multiple microphones. Direct 1/2, Overhead (stereo), and Room (stereo) captures enable simple but effective mixing.
  • 160 MIDI grooves (patterns) of real Japanese musical rhythms


takinojo B

Takinojo Mochizuki — master traditional Japanese percussionist

Takinojo specializes in playing traditional Japanese percussion instruments such as the kotsuzumi and other hand drums. Performing in a variety of styles, from Kabuki music to modern, he is an undisputable master of Japanese folk music and folk instruments.

Learn more about Takinojo Mochizuki at:

buyThe many voices of the kotsuzumi sampled for the first time ever


While best known for its gentle tapping sound, the kotsuzumi is in fact capable of myriad expressions. This library captures the full range of its voices, from crisp hand taps to detailed portamento slides controlled by grasping the drum’s cords.

Recreates the famed spooky passages

hyu-dorodoroThe odaiko can express the wind, snow, water, and other natural elements as well as the inner thoughts and feelings of the actors on stage. It can even imitate the spookiness of a ghost’s entrance.

Our collection features odaiko performances played with nagabachi (long, tapered sticks for sound effects) and yukibai (a special stick to imitate the sound of snow), giving music producers the scope to recreate nearly every odaiko nuance.

The clatter and rattle of Kabuki

The library includes the tsukeuchi sound-effect clappers that heighten the actors’ dramatic poses and the ashibyoshi foot beats that match dance steps.   
The hall used for recording the tsukeuchi, ashibyoshi, hyoushigi, and other sounds that require the hall’s ambience.

manNoh flute phrases and kakegoe calls

We recorded numerous Noh flute phrases, such as hishigi and ashirai, and the “iyoh” and “ho” calls (27 types and 148 variations) of the ensemble players, which are essential to the nagauta (long epic songs) that form the basis of Noh and Kabuki performances.

A wealth of rare instruments

The collection contains many rare instruments, such as the ekiro (a doughnut-shaped horse bell), music boxes, matsumushi (a small flat gong), fusegane (an altar gong), and hontsurigane (a large bell), used for Kabuki sound effects.

Detailed velocity layers

The instruments were recorded with up to 99 velocity layers to capture the full range of their expressiveness.


Separately recorded left and right hand hits

Recording left and right hand hits separately for instruments played with both hands enables the recreation of realistic dynamics. Drum rolls also sound very natural.

All extra room ambience removed

The recording was done in an anechoic room similar to the bamboo-curtained orchestra room where the instruments are played in a Kabuki theater. Reverb can be added as needed because the recordings preserve the true character of the instruments’ sound.

High-end microphones and microphone preamp

To record the true essence of the instruments’ sound, we used well-kept Neuman U 47, U 67, and Korby KAT67 condenser microphones and RCA 44BX and 77DX ribbon microphones. A vintage NEVE 5315 microphone preamp translated the microphone signals to the board.

160 MIDI patterns

The BFD2 library contains 160 grooves performed on MIDI drums by Takinojo Mochizuki, giving you instant access to real nagauta and Noh performance rhythm patterns.

First release in BFD2 format

This pack is compatible with BFD2 and BFD Eco. If you have BFD2, you can take advantage of all the library’s features, including full 24-bit resolution, up to 99 velocity layers, special presets, kits, and grooves. The pack is available for download from the FXpansion and Media Integration web stores. A special packaged version is planned for the Japan market as well.

bfd2 lbfdeco large

buyRecorded instruments

Taiko drum series

Odaiko - nagabachi
rakugaiko bachi
Odaiko - yukibai
rakudaiko yukibai
Shimedaiko 1 - futobachi
shimedaiko bachi
Shimedaiko 2 - hosobachi
simedaiko hosobachi

Otsuzumi 1
Otsuzumi 2
Kotsuzumi 1
Kotsuzumi 2

Daibyoushi 1 - bamboo stick
oobyoushi hosobachi
Daibyoushi 2 - hosobachi
oobyoushi bachi
okedou malet

Uchiwadaiko 1
uchiwataiko s1
Uchiwadaiko 2
uchiwadaiko m1 
Uchiwadaiko 3
uchiwadaiko l1 
Uchiwadaiko 4
uchiwadaiko ll1 

Stage sound effects

Tsukeuchi 1 - hall
Tsukeuchi 2 - studio

Kakegoe and flute sounds

Kakegoe A - 108 calls Kakegoe B - 40 calls Nohkan - 61 phrases
voiceA voiceB noukan

Bells, gongs, and symbols

Matsumushi - low
Matsumushi - high
Atarigane - held
Atarigane - hanging



Metallic percussion instruments

Hontsurigane 1A
hontsurigane hoso
Hontsurigane 1B
hontsurigane dai
Hontsurigane 2A
hontsurigane hoso
Hontsurigane 2B
hontsurigane dai

Dora 1
dora l
Dora 2
dora s

Kin 1
kin l
Kin 2
kin m
Kin 3
kin s


Other percussion effects

Hyoushigi - hall
Hyoushigi - studio
Mokugyo 1, 2,3

Mokushou 1, 2, 3

Binzasara 1
Binzasara 2 - kokiriko


  • Requires BFD2 (Version 2.1 or higher) or BFD Eco
  • Windows machines — Intel Pentium 4 or equivalent AMD, Windows 7 or higher
  • Mac OSX machines — Intel CPU, Mac OSX 10.5.8 or higher, min. 1 GB of RAM
  • Internet connection (for download and authorization)
  • Min. 16 GB of free hard disk space (separate drive recommended)


See the FXpansion site for details on using BFD2.1 and BFD Eco.
BFD Eco:http://www.fxpansion.com/index.php?page=103&;;tab=389


Takinojo Mochizuki — percussion instruments, kakegoe calls, MIDI drumming
Makoto Takei — Noh flute, kakegoe calls
Kosueki Mitsumasu — inscriptions
Tomzuin H — production

[Sonica Instruments End User License Agreement]

Recommended by Michiaki Kato

michiaki kato
Michiaki Kato's AUDIO DEMO:
Kabuki & Noh Percussion fills a long-held need of many music creators for a library of traditional Japanese instruments. This special collection contains a wide variety of Japanese instruments used in Noh and Kabuki that have yet to surface anywhere else.

Overlooked instruments include tsukeuchi (wooden clappers that are struck on a wooden plank to produce sounds that accompany Kabuki actors’ dramatic poses) and ashibyoshi (floor-shaking foot stomps). Naturally, the library includes tsuzumi hand drums and other familiar Kabuki sounds. And because the library was made completely in Japan with the requisite attention to the finest of details, this is a definitive Japanese sound library.

All instruments were recorded at full 24-bit/96 kHz fidelity with an assortment of vintage microphones and an old Neve 5315 console. The result is a truly musical sound library owing to the producer’s meticulous research and scrupulous attention to sound quality.

Kabuki & Noh Percussion is sure to satisfy not only musicians but also sound effect producers and others that work in the realm of sound. It will likely prove hugely useful to students of Japanese music as well.

This sound library will definitely become the world standard in Japanese instruments.

Michiaki Kato
Composer, arranger, producer, and guitarist

Michiaki formed the musical unit Dido with Shizuru Ohtaka in 1989 and released the 1989 album “Pajina” on Polystar and the 1994 album “Ksana” on King Records. Today, he arranges and produces songs for other artists and composes music for TV commercials and plays. He has composed more than 2,000 songs for commercials.

Recently, he has collaborated on many musical works with a number folk instrument players and traditional Japanese instrumentalists such as Chen Min, Yilana, and Hiromitsu Agatsuma. He also works as an arranger with the Hiroshima Symphony Orchestra, the Nara Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Gunma Symphony Orchestra.

Michiaki’s activities span the entire gamut from sound effects to full orchestras.

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