The Really Far East is a group of musicians who are best known for playing a fusion of Arabesque and Envy music (possibly with some other Terran genres thrown in, which are otherwise essentially unknown on The Land). The name of their band is derived from their claim that a spirit they know had provided them with a map of the Milky Way Galaxy (in the form of a large tapestry they commonly hang behind them on stage during performances), which shows that the Land is some distance to the east of Earth. However, there is currently no way of knowing for sure whether the points the map indicates truly represent the actual positions of either planet in the galaxy. Nor do most astronomers believe that a terrestrial term such as "east" has any meaning on a galactic scale, at least in any sense which would be comparable to its meaning on a planet. Nevertheless, most people who have heard the band's music don't care about such matters; they merely enjoy the sound. (It should also be noted that the band insists that whenever its name is either written or spoken, the word "Really" must be in italics; if one simply says "The Really Far East," it's not truly their name.)
The Really Far East has had a shifting roster of musicians over the years since the band first formed in 868. It is a wandering band, whose first known performance was reportedly in Ship, though it's claimed that most if not all of the original lineup were among the first generation to have been born in Ristar. This cannot be confirmed, as members of the band are not known by name; the belief that membership changes over time is due largely to many fans swearing they suddenly stop seeing old faces on stage and start seeing new ones. However, the band itself neither confirms nor denies this. There is even a rumor that old members may simply use new glamour masks to change their appearance, thus adding to the mystery of the band, though most fans find this highly unlikely. Of course, if any original members remain, they'd be in at least their 60s, by now. In any event, the suggestion that the band originated in Ristar is disputed by many, who believe it was just a rumor started by fans to explain the true reason for the band's name (Ristar being the easternmost village on the Land, at least prior to the founding of Barbequeue in 913, and discounting Woodstockade, which most people consider the westernmost village, in spite of its location on most maps).
While the Really Far East are best known for a style which blends the musical styles of various Middle Eastern and Far Eastern countries, they have also been known to occasionally play music of a single Terran style. For example, they performed a concert on New Spring Day (see Holidays of the Land), 913, in the village of South Port, which was still under construction at the time. The music they played at that concert was strictly Envy. According to the band, it was the kind of music Chinese bands on Earth would play at their own Spring Festivals.
Because of the band's unique style, they are quite popular in any village where they play, enjoying a level of critical and commercial respect similar to that of acting troupe The Tooblan Company.
The makeup of The Really Far East includes a rotating variety of instruments, and a different number of each type, at different times. However, such instruments generally include the shakuhachi, zurna, tabla, taiko, bağlama, sanxian, erhu, gaohu, dizi, yunluo, and koto.