Announcing Our New Instagram Page

In advance of our trip to the UK next week to participate in the 1st European Taiko Conference, we’re pleased to announce the opening of our Instagram account!
We’ll be using this to document out taiko-related travels, as well as to share assorted taiko-related photos we’ve collected and will continue to collect. Please follow us, and we’ll be sure to do the same! (If your account is primarily taiko-related, that is ­čśë )

New Taiko Music History Article: Monochrome

We follow up the “Yatai-bayashi” article with an article about “Monochrome,” composed in 1976 for Ondekoza by Ishii Maki. Ishii brought together his Western art music compositional training and the festival music roots of Ondekoza, and created something unique to the taiko performance world. Nearly 40 years after its premiere, “Monochrome” remains a shining example of the melding of different musical and theatrical influences into a performance style meant for the concert stage.

New Taiko Music History Article: Yatai-bayashi

After a brief time away, we’re back with new Taiko Music History articles! In fact, we have TWO new articles!

We begin with an article written by Ben and posted by Gastoncito San Cristobal on his website Esto Es Taiko, about the Ondekoza/Kodo staple “Yatai-bayashi.” In the article, Ben discusses the history of Ondekoza, of Chichibu Yatai-bayashi, and how this festival music became a staple of the taiko concert stage.

New Music History Article: Symmetrical Soundscapes

We’re happy to announce the release of the next in the Music History article series. Today, we look at Kenny Endo’s “Symmetrical Soundscapes”! This piece not only was part of a movement towards solo taiko performance in the 1980s, but is a reflection of the diverse musical experiences brought into one by Kenny Endo, who this year is celebrating his 40th Anniversary of playing taiko!

New Interview with Jonathan Kirby

We’re happy to announce the next installment of our interview series! This time, Ben (virtually) sat down with Jonathan Kirby, founder of Kagemusha Taiko.┬áWe discuss the origins of Kagemusha Taiko, the goals and philosophies that have driven its development and activities, and the upcoming┬áEuropean Taiko Conference.

Visit the interview page to stream the audio, or else download the mp3 so you can listen at your leisure!

Video-a-day series on Facebook

We’ve started a new series of posts on our Facebook account. Starting today, we’re striving to post one taiko-related video every day. There’s a lot of great videos out there, and what better way to use Facebook than to share them with others!

We begin with the piece that started the whole contemporary taiko performance movement: Suwa Ikazuchi, performed by Osuwa Daiko. Taiko sets, zetto, Oguchi Daihachi chanting – this video has it all. Head over to our Facebook page to check it out, either by the icon in the top right corner of the site or by clicking on this link.

New Interview with Gast├│n San Cristobal

It’s October, and with the new month comes a new Interview! Today we’re featuring our interview with Gast├│n San Cristobal. Gast├│n is co-founder and director of ESTO ES TAIKO, the first magazine outside of Japan dedicated to taiko performance. He is also a member of Shinzui Daiko in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and currently is studying in Japan at the University of Tsukuba. In this interview, we talk about his performance history, taiko in Argentina, and his life as a consumer of all things taiko-related as he studies in Japan.

Click on the link to visit the interview page, where you can listen to the interview or download a mp3 so you can listen later!