Some people listen to soft harmonic music to relax, some listen to upbeat tunes, but have you tried listening to both? That is exactly what 37-year-old Buddhist monk, Yogetsu Akasaka has created. He uses a loop machine as he beatboxes and chants. A video he posted last May titled, “Heart Sutra Live” went instantly viral. His music is both relaxing and euphoric, which are more often than not on opposite sides of the spectrum of feelings.
He layers an assortment of beats and chants with the loop machine, all done with just a mic and his own voice. The video has since gone viral and now has more than a hundred thousand views, touching people from all over the world. Akasa became a monk to follow in his father’s footsteps, but before that, in his early 20’s beatboxing was his life. “I always had a love for music and wanted to continue my passion even after becoming a monk. Which is why I had decided to take on beatboxing again.” he said.
His love for beatboxing started 15 years ago when a friend of his gave him a CD of the Japanese beatboxer Afra. He was amazed that someone could make great music by using just their mouth and realized he himself had a talent for doing the same thing. He performed on the streets of Japan, Australia, and the United States, and on top of that, he was also a theatre actor.
He said he did it for his love for his craft and not for the uniqueness of it because let’s face it, “monk” and “beatboxing” aren’t words you usually hear together in one sentence. “It’s not that I wanted to gain attention for my ‘uniqueness,’ I just wanted to continue my passion for music, in the same way someone plays the guitar or the drums, I myself am just a normal performer,” he said. Watch the video below with your headphones on, eyes closed and breathing evenly.
Like one of the commenters said, “This is beyond beautiful! This is what [our] mind need in these insane times we live now…”