Shinozaki Violin Method Vol.1 no. 67, 68 C Major Scale, 69, 70 “Moon over the Ruined Castle” by Rentaro Taki

Up to this point, everyone has learned the notes on the A, D, and G strings, as well as playing two strings (A and D strings) in one piece. Now, you are ready to use three strings (A, D, and G strings) in one song. You will learn dotted notes in this section, too.

Rentaro Taki

No. 70 “Moon over the Ruined Castle” is the work of Japanese composer, Rentaro Taki (1879 -1903). He learned the Western music quickly that was introduced in Japan then and he even continued to study in Europe. However, he had to return to Japan since he got tuberculosis, and passed away at the young age of 23.

“Moon over the Ruined Castle” is written when Rentaro Taki was 21 years old. The castle in his mind was Oka castle in Ohita prefecture in Japan which is his hometown. The lyric of this song was written by Bansui Doi. Here you can find the lyric translated into English:

Flowery feast in spring high up in the castle

Cups of sake were passed around

Lit by the moonlight through the old pine branches

Where is that old moonlight now? 

Encampment in autumn was white covered with frost

A number of geese honked as they flew across the sky

The moonlight shined on the swords thrusted upright into the ground

Where is that old moonlight now? 

Now at midnight the moon is right above

For whom does it shine like in the past?

Nothing remains on the rampart but some ivy

Nothing to hear but the rustle of pine branches in the storm 

Up in the sky the moon and the stars remain unchanged

But in the earthly life, rises and falls come and go

Does the moon hang there to reflect those changes?

Ah! the midnight moon over the ruined castle

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