Yerko Lorca & Kuan Yin
“Y” comes from Yerko Lorca in Spain, and “K” hails from Taiwan, known as Kuan Yin. The two met through music at Güell Park in Barcelona and founded “YK Band” in 2015. They center their music around rare ancient instruments: the West African traditional Kora, the 3,000-year-old extinct Tartessian Lyre, and the ancient Mediterranean Tar Drum. Their performances are enriched with original compositions featuring the harmonious blend of male and female vocals. They have journeyed across various music festivals and concerts both domestically and internationally.
The Lira, an ancient Mediterranean string instrument, has mostly vanished over time, with only Greece, Egypt, Ethiopia, and a few others still upholding its traditions. The instrument has acquired various names as it spread to different countries. Yerko Lorca’s performance on the extinct Tattersall Lira is one of its kind. Yerko, along with his research team, revived this rare instrument based on the 3,000-year-old Spanish archaeological monument, the Estela de Luna, discovered in 1975 in the town of Luna. The original monument now resides in the Zaragoza Museum. Yerko stands as the sole musician today who plays the 15-string Tattersall Lira.
The 21-string Kora, a traditional instrument of the Manding culture in West Africa, is a heritage passed down through generations. Only specific lineages within certain ethnic groups have the privilege to learn the authentic techniques of playing the 21-string Kora, referred to as “Jeli.” These individuals, known as “Jeli,” bear the immense responsibility of preserving tribal history. Even before the advent of written records, they served as the historians of their tribes, cultural defenders, and warriors. Through their sung stories and historical narratives, they ensured that the origins of history were not forgotten.
The Tar Drum is a type of frame drum consisting of a circular wooden frame and a drumhead. This instrument can be traced in various ancient cultures around the world. Each culture has developed its own variations of the drum, sometimes incorporating bells or jingles. Historically, this drum was often used in ceremonies, and the medium-sized drums were commonly played by women.