Nan Feng Chang 南風暢
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66. Southern Winds Rhapsody
角徵羽調 Juezhiyu mode:2 standard tuning 5 6 1 2 3 (a five string qin melody)
南風暢 1
Nan Feng Chang
  Page 1 of my transcription (complete pdf) 3  
Details of the stories behind "Southern Winds" melodies have been given with the introduction to the earliest surviving "Song of Southern Winds", the 1511 Nan Feng Ge. Those are mostly relatively short songs with lyrics throughout (see outline). In contrast the present melody is mostly instrumental, with only one section having lyrics.

Although the title "Nan Feng Chang" survives in a number of early qin handbooks,4 all of the later ones are related to another melody first appearing in Xilutang Qintong with the title 虞舜思親 Yu Shun Si Qin. That melody is discussed below in a footnote.5

Characteristics of the "juezhiyu mode" are nowhere detailed. From my observation the modal characteristics, as with a number of other melodies in a yu mode, are most notable for the way they switch from being do - so to being la - mi. Thus the modal prelude is mostly do - so, goes to la - mi at the end of the main section then returns to do - so at the end of the harmonic closing.

For internal structural features on can point to mm.9-13 in my transcription of the modal prelude, repeated in Section 4 of the main melody, just before the lyrics. Also in the main melody, mm, 25-33 are repeated at mm. 54-62, but on the top half of the qin; this is reminiscent of passages in Shenren Chang (#132 in this handbook).

Several other recordings are available on the internet, including one by 丁承運 Ding Chengyun.6

Original afterword7

Yu Shun paid respect facing south playing a qin song, thus revealing the fulfillment of non-action. Thus it is said, Shun played a five-string qin while singing of southern winds, and so the universe was well-ordered.

The lyrics sung in Section 4 of Nan Feng Chang are as follows:

Nan feng zhi xun xi, ke yi jie wu min zhi yun xi,
Southern winds' balm         can be used to resolve my people's irritations.

Nan feng zhi shi xi, ke yi fu wu min zhi cai xi.
Southern winds' timeliness         can be used to multipy my people's resources.

Music (See transcription; timings follow my recording 8 )
This recording combines Nan Feng Chang with its modal prelude.

Juezhiyu Modal prelude
00.00   1.
00.40         Closing harmonics
00.57         Modal prelude ends

Southern Winds Rhapsody (Nan Feng Chang)
00.59    1. (harmonics)
02.01    2. (ends with harmonics)
02.42    3.
03.22    4. (harmonics with the lyrics)
04.04    5. (ends with harmonics)
05.04    6.
05.38    7.
06.08         Closing harmonics
06.30         End

Footnotes (Shorthand references are explained on a separate page)

1. Southern Winds Rhapsody (南風暢 Nan Feng Chang)
2798.340 南風 does not mention "暢 chang", and the full title, 南風暢 Nan Feng Chang, does not have a separate entry. The translation of "暢 chang" as "rhapsody" follows the common translation of Shenren Chang as "Rhapsody of a Celestial". Perhaps "hymm" would be more appropriate, particularly if the lyrics went all the way through.

The 1511 Nan Feng Ge ends with the same lyrics as those in Section 4 here, but it is melodically unrelated.

2. 角徵羽調 Juezhiyu mode
Zha Guide 20/00/00 has this mode only here. For modes in general see Modality in Early Ming Qin Tablature.

The musical mode (角徵羽調 uses standard tuning and five strings. This Nan Feng Chang has seven sections, with the fourth section having lyrics ("南風之薰兮....財兮").

3. Image: staff notation
The transcription linked at top also includes the Juezhiyu modal prelude.

4. Tracing Nan Feng Chang
Zha Guide 18/176/-- (no mention of lyrics!)

5. 虞舜思親 Yu Shun Si Qin (later called 南風暢 Nan Feng Chang)
    - See my transcription together with its modal prelude and melody prelude (Li Shan Yin)     __
The earliest surviving version of this "Nan Feng Chang" melody is not the 1525 Nan Feng Chang discussed above but another five-string qin melody in the same handbook, #152 Yu Shun Si Qin. The fact that Zha Guide 22/196/384 lists Yu Shun Si Qin only in 1525 suggests that Zha Fuxi did not notice that all the later melodies called Nanfeng Chang are actually versions of this Yu Shun Si Qin.

The nine occurrences of versions of this melody are thus:

Yu Shun Si Qin and these later eight called Nan Feng Chang all use 復古 fugu mode, a five-string version of huangzhong (raised fifth, lowered third strings: 1 3 5 6 1). Unlike with most of the Nan Xun Ge and Nanfeng Ge above, the only Nan Feng Chang and Yu Shun Si Qin to have lyrics are those from 1525; the former has them only in its Section 4 and the latter only in its Section 5. These latter are the same as those of the 1511 Si Qin Cao (陟彼歷山兮....), not Nanfeng Ge. Its afterword is also similar to that of Si Qin Cao; the prefaces to all the others connect more to Nan Feng Ge, though there is sometimes some ambivalence, as in 1546.

The great similarity of these nine suggests that this particular melody (without the section having lyrics) may have always been learned from tablature as a kind of study rather than played actively.

See also here. In fact, I have also reconstructed and recorded the earliest examples of #1 (1491) and #2 (1511), but have not done so for Yu Shun Si Qin or any of its descendants.

6. Recordings
I always do reconstructions without consulting other peoples versions, so it is always interesting afterwards to see how independently we interpreted the note values (which are not directly indicated in the tablature). Regarding this see Rhythm in Early Ming Qin Tablature.

7. Lyrics
The original Chinese afterword is:



8. Music
Recorded Weehawken New Jersey 30 November 2020.

Return to the annotated handbook list or to the Guqin ToC.