There was an event in Kanayama, Nagoya last week. SISAY, the Ecuadorian band formed by Imbayas Indian in Otavalo, had concerts and Inti Raymi, or the festival of the sun, there in four days. I went and see the event last Saturday because I’ve liked the band since I met them at Aichi Expo in 2005.
They had four or five concerts and Inti Raymi a day during the period. I left home for the event in the evening. Recently it’s been really hot during the daytime here in Nagoya. It was around 6:30 p.m. that I arrived at Kanayama, when Inti Raymi was about to start.
One of SISAY’s members spit alcohol on the ground, saying his prayers on the stage. He seemed to act a kind of priest. Then he daubed flowers on people’s faces. The people who were daubed flowers by the priest also hold some alcohol in their mouths and spit it on the ground. Then a man in a trance (of course, playing!) wore a special costume and he and people started dancing in a circle.
Inti Raymi was the religious ceremony of the Inca Empire to thank the sun god for harvest. According to them, they also purify their sin and evil spirits and wish them happiness next year with strong drink and flowers.
After the performance, a concert was held. SISAY played some folk music.
Their music was wonderful as usual. SISAY, however, has changed some members for others whenever I see the band. I’ve heard from some fans of them that it’s difficult for them to keep forming the band with the same members because some can’t stand their long-term tour abroad.
I’ve heard another problem that is hard for them to find pure Imbayas Indian players lately as mixed-race people have increased. That’s why it seems that the present members have to marry women from the same tribe to save their music and culture. Many of Japanese female fans of them may be frustrated about that!
Anyway, I had a wonderful time to see the rare festival in Japan and to listen to their music over beer in the evening cool wind.