Wednesday, September 24, 2014

World Conference on Indigenous Peoples. September 22, 2014


Keiko Itokazu (Japan's House of Councillors, elected from Okinawa Prefecture), and Shisei Toma (of the Association of Indigenous Peoples in Ryukus) attended the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples on September 22, 2014. Delegates from around the world held discussions on guaranteeing political representation and freedomfrom discrimination. They appealed to the U.N. over the ongoing United States military expansion in Honoko and Takae.

The expansion of a new base will add to the ongoing destruction of the Indigenous culture and sacred places of Okinawa.

The coral reefs of Okinawa, as well as other reefs of the Pacific Islands, are also being destroyed through pollution, and landfills and coastal developments. Over one thousand different species of reef fish, sea turtles, and marine mammals, even birds and other coastal species are being affected.
At least ten species that are already facing extinction will be greatly affected from the expansion of a U.S. military base. Among those species are sea turtles and the dugong.


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

September 21, 2014: Stage 21

This past Sunday night was Stairway to the Dream's concert Stage 21. Held at The Delancey (168 Delancey street New York, NY 10002). A lot of fun, great bands. And a great way to end the weekend

And of course, the host, MC Gosha!
Sax solo during Ruco's performance of Everyday People

Friday, September 19, 2014

BIG & small

Putting up a few photos of various drums. Here's two. O Daiko & Shime Daiko.

("Big, fat drum") Long bodied style (nagado) drum, but it can also refer any large drum, is made from a single tree trunk. The trees that they come from can be hundreds to thousands of years old. Some o daiko are so large, that they have a set place in in a temple or shrine, rarely being moved (There's one Nagado O daiko weighing four tons in Takayama City).

("Tensioned drum") long version: tsukeshime (tsukeru: to fasten, attach/ shimeru:to fasten, tie/ compounded: tight secure drum). Shime are normally used to keep rhythm. In Noh and Kabuki-Nagauta the shime is placed slightly tilted on its stand.

More on O daiko & Shime daiko soon!
photos taken at Brooklyn DOJO.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Kumi-Taiko With Ninja Taiko, Part Of New York Suwa Taiko Association

KUMI-TAIKO (devised and perfected by Grand Master Daihachi Oguchi in 1951) gathers many different traditional wa daiko of various tones and sizes. Each with there own sound, playing in an ensemble.

Hiro Kurashima, Osuwa Daiko Shihan (certified by the late Grandmaster Daihachi Oguchi, 1924-2008) and leader of Taiko Masala, teaches class on Saturdays with NINJA taiko. A multi-cultural and multi-generational band of "misfits" (from personal experience, being one of the students). So in a sense the people are a lot like the wa daiko.

"Grand Master Oguchi's goal was, and the intention of Ninja Taiko and all the other Suwa Taiko Association teams in the New York Metropolitan area is, to spread the joy of Taiko to as many people as possible. Ninja Taiko drummers --men and women of different ages, with different cultural, religious, and ethnic backgrounds; from different walks of life, for a wide range of reasons--come together with the intention to play well and share the joy of both traditional and contemporary taiko music." Les Von Losberg

NYSTA At Mitsuwa Marketplace Summer Festival 2013
NINJA at SUMMER SATURDAZE International Celebration 2014  at East New York Farmers Market
"(In addition to Les' quote) The mission is for all of us learning SUWA style Taiko drumming. Our goal is to make good harmony and share joy with even one more person in our regular lives. In this meaning, Taiko is our best tool to exercise to polish ourselves and become well rounded persons."
Hiro Kurashima

Mitsuwa Marketplace (New Jersey) Summer Festival 2013