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CONCERT & DANCE LISTINGS • CD REVIEWS • FREE EVENTS

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B I - M O N T H LY Volume 5 Number 2 March-April 2005

THE S O U R C E F O R F O L K / T R A D I T I O N A L M U S I C , D A N C E , S T O RY T E L L I N G & O T H E R R E L AT E D F O L K A R T S I N T H E G R E AT E R L O S A N G E L E S A R E A

“ D o n’ t y o u k n o w t h a t F o l k M u s i c i s i l l e g a l i n L o s A n g e l e s ? ”

  • WARREN

CASEY

of the Wicked Tinkers

Drumming Up A New Tradition

JAPANESE AMERICAN TAIKO IN NORTH AMERICA

BY DEBORAH WONG

f y o u l i v e i n S o u t h e r n C a l i f o r n i a , y o u h a v e p r o b a b l y c I o m e a c r o s s a J a p a n e s e d r u m m i n g g r o u p a t s o m e p o i n t , s o m e w h e r e , p e r h a p s a t a c u l t u r a l f e s t i v a l o r i n L i t t l e T o k y o , o r p e r h a p s y o u v e g o n e t o a K o d ô c o n c e r t . W h e t h e r y o u h a v e e n c o u n t e r e d t a i k o i n R o y c e H a l l o r o n a c i t y s t r e e t , y o u h a v e l i k e l y b e e n b l o w n a w a y b y t h e p o w e r a n d p h y s i c a l i t y o f t h e d r u m s a n d t h e m u s i c i a n s . T a i k o i s i n c r e d i b l y v i s c e r - a l : i t s p e r f o r m e r s w o r k u p a s w e a t , a n d a u d i e n c e m e m b e r s f e e l t h e d r u m s a s m u c h a s t h e y h e a r t h e m . I p l a y i n a g di r o u p n a m e d S a t o r i D a i k o , b a s e n t h e g r e a t e r L A n g e l e s a r e a a n d l e d b y a m os a s t e r t a i k o p l a y e r n a m e d R e v . T o m K u r a i w h o i s a l s o a Z e n B u d d h i s t p r i e s t . S a t o r i m e a n s e n l i g h t e n m e n t . I v e s t u d i e d a n u m b e r o f d i f f e r e n t m u s i c t r a - d i t i o n s a s a n e t h n o m u s i c o l o g i s t , b u t p l a y i n g t a i k o i s o n e o f t h e m o s t t h r i l l i n g a n d m e a n i n g f u l e x p e r i e n c e s I h a v e e v e r h a d a s a m u s i c i a n a n d a s a n A s i a n A m e r i c a n . T a i k o o f f e r s a r e a l m e a n s f o r c o m m u n i t y - b u i l d i n g a n d A s i a n A m e r i c a n i d e n t i t y w o r k , a n d i t a l s o p r e s e n t s a s e r i e s o f c o n t r a d i c t i o n s t h a t a r e c e n t r a l t o i t s r i c h n e s s . I t i s , a n d i s n t , a f o l k m u s i c o r a n a u t h e n t i c t r a d i t i o n a l m u s i c . I t i s b o t h A s i a n a n d A s i a n A m e r i c a n . I t i s i n C a l i f o r n i a a n d N o r t h A m e r i c a a s a r e s u l t o f J a p a n e s e i m m i g r a t i o n a t t h e e n d o f t h e 1 9 t h c e n t u r y . T a i k o c o n t i n u e s t o c i r c u l a t e b e t w e e n J a p a n e s e a n d J a p a n e s e A m e r i c a n s . I t c a n b e p l a y e d b y a n y o n e b u t h a s p a r t i c u l a r a n d d i f f e r e n t , m e a n i n g s f o r J a p a n e s e A m e r i c a n s , A s i a n A m e r i c a n s m o r e b r o a d l y , a n d f o r B u d d h i s t s . I t o f f e r s a c o m p e l l i n g w a y f o r t h i n k i n g a b o u t c o o p e r a t i o n a n d c o l l a b o r a t i o n , f o r l i n k i n g t h e b o d y a n d s p i r i t t h r o u g h s o u n d , a n d f o r m a k i n g m u s i c w h i l e l e a v i n g y o u r e o a s i d e . T h e r e a r e t h o u s a n d s o f t a i k o g r o u p s i n J a p a n ( m o s t l y a m a - D R U M M I N G p a g e 2 6

inside this issue:

Irish Sean-Nós Singing

Dancing Up A Storm Los Lobos

PLUS:

Keys to the Highway Voices In My Head Reed’s Ramblings CD Reviews Uncle Ruthie Law Talk & much more...

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