Long ago, travelers would dream of going to "Jipang," the land of gold.
Comprised of many islands, God had blessed the land with deep green mountains and valleys, as well as countless rivers whose water was crystal clear.
Futhermore, God gave the land four beautiful seasons so that those who lived on it would never be bored and would appreciate and enjoy nature's mysterious circle of life.
In spring, the season of birth, bush warblers sing and cherry blossoms bloom radiantly white as if they were illusions.
In summer, all forms of life grow in the droning chorus of cicadas and bright sunlight.
In autumn, the season of fertility, dragonflies ("tombo"; a name which also referes to the land itself) fly in@the red setting sun, the changing color of the leaves color the mountains red and yellow, and the fields are blessed with golden harvest.
And comes winter.
Nature's energy which has given birth, nurtured, and produced fruit in spring, summer, and autumn, is given rest by the tranquil snow, which quietly falls and covers the land like a white blanket.
Of all seasonal sceneries, snow is one of the most mysterious.
The flakes of ice which fall from the skies are of course, cold. Yet, they sometimes fill our hearts with warmth.
A beautiful and fragile hexagon when magnified, each snowflake is said to be different from one another.
One can always tell when winter is here by the scent which fills the air. It is a special scent that slightly stimulates our noses, a clean smell of the ozone, a scent which may be described as having a purplish pearl white color to it.
And when snow finally falls, the mountains and fields are covered with tranquility, as snow absorbs all sounds.
It is as calm as our minds when we are free of all thoughts, like the peaceful moment one feels right before falling asleep.
It is the beginning of the special time when nature is freed of its tensions and rests to gain back its energy.
Snow puts a white coating on everything; the beautiful and the ugly, the dirty and the clean, the holy and the evil, as if it forgives, cures, and protects all.
It is forever indulgent and fair.
Snow calms and tranquilizes all living matters. It is one the most precious of God's blessings.
In this album entitled "Snow," four great pianists who were born and raised in the blessed islands have created and recorded melodies and sounds with snow as their themes.
Like snowflakes, there is a different beauty in each artist and each composition, filling the air with rich tranquility.