We went to go see this show last night. I’m not quite sure what I was expecting but it sure was not a bunch of middle aged guys banging away on
bongos Ricardo style. In one word this was simply amazing. To say it was simply a musical experience is not quite doing it justice. This is
something that unexpectedly moved my soul.
By using traditional Japanese instruments they moved me to tears, laughter and just plain thrilled me. Drums from the size of your hand all the way
up to the height of 2 men, flutes, stringed instruments and voice took me on a trip without having to use a passport. Softly haunting flute and string
works transitioning into deep reverberating drum solos that I not only heard but felt, knocked me off my pins. When I say “felt” that’s exactly
what I mean. At times my insides were vibrating to the beat of the drums making my head spin leaving me wanting more. 2 hours passed and in all
honesty it seemed no more than 30 minutes, that’s how captivated I was.
In watching the performers you get the feeling that there is a lot more to them than just a group of musically talented people. In watching them on
stage one gets the feeling that these men and woman are a new breed in the musical world that I would classify as musical athletes. Their movements
while producing the sound were so in tune that they seemed, oddly enough, to be one in the same.
How could it be that an audiophile like me had never heard of them before? Well, that’s a good question, so I set out to learn more as soon as we
There is no wiki page on them, there is no in depth biography online. Google searches turned up precious little. However I was able to find an
article written on them by Holly Van Auken a Virginia-Pilot correspondent that has some insight as to the group.
The TAO of the Drummer In this article it states that they live a life that is almost monk
like, in a compound in the mountains of Japan in a National Forest. Their training is rigorous starting at 5 in the morning and sometimes not ending
until 1am. Warm up for the day in the form of 1 solid hour of drum beating with no breaks followed by practices and rehearsals. Little outside
contact, none of the conveniences we as modern individuals have become accustomed to all to bring the world a premier experience. And I for one
cannot thank them enough for it. That, my friends, is dedication to your art to a degree that you or I will never know.
If you get the chance to see them, I would highly suggest you do so even if you think that this musical form is one you have no interest in. I would
lay a wager that by the end of the 2 hour performance you will be just as big a fan of them as I am now.
I leave you with a small sample of their work in the form of a couple of videos that in no way shape or form is even close to the live experience. I
hope that I have been able to present to you enough information that you seek them out on your own. I don’t think you’ll be sorry that you took
the time to do so.
edit on 29-3-2012 by MyMindIsMyOwn because: Video embed
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