New CDs by Jim Franklin

'Trees, Stones, Water, Sand', a new Ambient/World Music album by Michael Atherton, Jon Drummond, Jim Franklin and Tony Wheeler, für diverse instruments, including shakuhachi, was released in January 2021. This album is only available in download and streaming formats, and can be purchased at BandCamp.

'Songs from the Lake', the long-anticipated, new CD by Jim Franklin for shakuhachi and live electronics, was released on December 4, 2020. The CD can be ordered from NEOS Music.


In 2020, the COVID19 year, my professional activities with shakuhachi collapsed almost entirely. Gradually, all my concerts and other events were cancelled, teaching groups dissolved as students were forced to reevaluate their situations, and teaching spaces were closed to me (probably long-term). I consider the Corona restrictions to be appropriate and necessary, but I do not wish to deny their devastating effects on me as a musician. I am, of course, not alone in this situation.

Every musician must find his or her own response to the situation in the world. i have decided to restructure my activities, My teaching has now moved online (FaceTime/Skype/Zoom), and I am otherwise focussing on composition and recordings, which will be released primarily online.

Accordingly, I am certainly still willing to offer shakuhachi instruction, but I have no idea when, where and whether this will be possible as face-to-face teaching. Also, the events for 2021 listed on this website under 'Performances' must be considered as provisional, dependent on further developments of the Corona pandemic.

They will also depend on my country of residence. I can carry out online activities from anywhere in the world, and accordingly, my wife (Hiroko Sugino, shakuhachi performer and visual artist) and I have decided to emigrate to Japan, her home country. Exactly when this will take place, depends in turn on how long it takes for the Japanese authorities to approve a residency permit for me. Presumably this will be within the first half of 2021. But it is impossible for me to say which of the listed events in Germany will actually take place, even if the COVID19 situation improves. I will update this website as soon as further information is available.

At this point I would like to thank all those people who have made it possible for me to live from my activities as a shakuhachi performer in Europe: the members of my family, past and present; my students; the many audience members at my concerts; the concert organisers and venue contact persons; the purchasers of my CDs; the people who have supported me during 2020 through donations and other forms of aid; and my many generous and supportive friends. There are nevertheless several individuals and close friends, whom I especially wish to mention; they supported me particularly at the beginning of my professional time in Europe (in the early 2000s and thereafter) as I gradually built up my activities:

Br. Jakobus Kaffanke OSB, St. Martin's Abbey, Beuron;
Rev. Dr. Ludwig Frambach, Nuremberg;
Dr. Doris Kurella, Linden-Museum Stuttgart;
Felix Muntwiler, St. Paul's Cathedral, Esslingen;
Doris Karner-Klett, Kirchheim/Teck;
Father Karl Kern SJ and Father Ansgar Wiedenhaus SJ, St. Clare's Church, Nuremberg.

Without their support I could not have managed to find my feet in Germany.

These are only the most prominent names; if I have not mentioned someone here, then the fault lies with my memory, not with a lack of gratitude.

I also wish to thank you, now, for visiting my website.

Jim Franklin, January 2021.

Concert videos

Jim Franklin, Hiroko Sugino, 24. 11. 2018

On 24. 11. 2018, Jim Franklin and Hiroko Sugino performed a (non-classical) concert at the Theremin Academy Lippstadt 2018: shakuhachi * 2, live electronics * 2 und theremin * 1 (2 musicians). A complete video recording of the concert can be found here (

Jim Franklin, Karen Schlimp, Margarete Wenzel, 20. 01. 2019

On 20. 01. 2019, a recitation-concert, 'Der Meister der Teezeremonie' ('The Tea Ceremony Master') was performed in the Tae Kwon Do Studio Wolfmayr in Linz (Austria) by Jim Franklin (shakuhachi), Karen Schlimp (prepared piano) and Margarete Wenzel (narrator). The text is in German. A complete video recording of the concert can be found here (



Dr Jim Franklin is a master performer of the shakuhachi, as well as a composer.

He studied the shakuhachi with Riley Lee in Sydney, and Furuya Teruo and Yokoyama Katsuya in Tokyo.

In 1996 he received the title "Shihan" (Master) from Yokoyama-sensei. He is one of the few non-Japanese, and the very few residents of Europe, to have received this high title.

In 2018 he was Programme Director of the World Shakuhachi Festival in London.

He has lived in Germany since 2004, where he teaches and performs the shakuhachi.





Jim Franklin is a qualified teacher of shakuhachi, in the lineage of Yokoyama Katsuya. He offers online instruction for beginners and advanced players.

Teaching news:

KSK Europe is planning further workshops during 2021 and 2022, in the hope that in improvement in the COVID19 situation will permit these to take place. Further information can be found here