1953 Gyokusui Kono 1.8 with Original Cap and Hardshell Case

A very fine Kono with the original cap dated 11.20.53 and bearing the handwritten name. Another real treat is the original hard case with the Gyokusui name plate (translates to: “Gyokusui Mei (name) Shakuhachi Seisakusho (factory), Kouno Gyokusui, Toyonaka-shi (city in Osaka) 1 chome 22-2”). The case is in very good condition and can accommodate up to two 1.8 shakuhachi.

This flute is a wonderful example of Kono’s best work for that period, with excellent tuning, intonation, response and a beautifully refined tone color. The medium-sized bore is 100% original, unblemished, and can accommodate everything from a sweet, delicate, precision tone to a more powerful, expansive tone… extremely versatile.

This flute is nearing 65 years old and is in fantastic condition. Spectacular bamboo. Center joint has rattan+sterling, buffalo horn Tozan inlay has sterling bordering, with a small chip repaired non-invasively from the front. There are no cracks in this flute. New coat of urushi on the joint–fit is precision and snug.

This is a wonderful instrument, and the first Gyokusui I have seen with the original cap and a name-plated case, much less from the 1950’s. A real treasure for both players, and collectors.