Archive for September, 2012

Taiko at CicLAvia!

Sunday, September 30th, 2012

Taiko at CicLAvia
Sunday Oct 7 2012
10am – 12noon*

* Please check website on Saturday for possible updates

Taiko At CicLAvia Poster

Join us next weekend at CicLAvia for experiments with the new taiko trailer!

For the last few months, we’ve been making a trailer that will allow us to play taiko while riding bikes. Assuming the final steps go well, it will be done by CicLAvia next Sunday. We’ll be riding it for the first time and trying out ideas for fun, festive music. Join us!

Exposition Park Hub (10am-ish) –> Little Tokyo (noon-ish)

Hiro and I will enter the CicLAvia course at the Exposition Park Hub (see for map) at about 10am. We’ll start with a few taiko experiments at Exposition Park, ride a mile or so and try a few more, making our way to Little Tokyo for lunch at around noon. You can meet us at Exposition Park or along the route (Figueroa –> 7th –> Spring –> 1st). The total distance from Exposition Park to Little Tokyo is 5 miles. Parking is available in Explosition Park on Bill Robertson Lane.

The Long Haul:
Torrance (7am) –> Exposition Park Hub (10am-ish)

I’m also looking for brave souls that want to ride bikes with us from Torrance to CicLAvia. We’ll start at the GVJCI parking lot at 7am (1964 West 162nd Street, Gardena CA 90247) and slowly make our way north. Considering this is our first time, we might need help fixing technical challenges, lifting the trailer over curbs, etc. The total distance from Torrance to Exposition Park is 10 miles.

What to bring:

  • bike or walking shoes (I assume we’ll travel slowly, so walking is okay too)
  • musical ideas, new tradition ideas, etc!
  • small, portable instrument?
  • bike lock (during lunch)
  • sunblock
  • water

Please let your taiko friends know about the get-together and drop me a line if you’ll be able to make it. This should be fun!


More info
Taiko At CicLAvia Poster

kris at OnEnsemble .dot. org
310-350-8825 (cell)

DIY plastic bag drying rack

Thursday, September 13th, 2012

I’ve just finished a fun project to make a drying rack for our plastic bags. We were always struggling to find a place to put them after washing, so I made this suspended rack out of wood and copper wire. I’m surprised how well this is working!


  • Suspended design saves space
  • Accommodates all bag sizes
  • Perfect fit for Nijiya 12lb rice bags, small and large-type re-sealable zipper bags
  • Removable drip-catcher made from cookie sheet already in kitchen


  • reclaimed ash wood with tung oil finish
  • copper wire (9 AWG? from hardware shop)
  • neodymium magnets (3/8″, round from Rockler)
  • recycled cookie sheet
  • 1/16 wire rope with aluminum crimps
  • various 1 and 2-groove pulleys from salvaged scanners and copy machines

DIY wooden knife magnet

Thursday, September 13th, 2012

I recycled the magnets in a batch of old hard drives to make a wooden knife magnet to hold my woodworking chisels. It turned out really well.


  • reclaimed cherry wood, finished with tung oil
  • neodymium magnets from dead computer hard drives mounted with T88 epoxy
  • sturdy threaded inserts for mounting with bolts

Imagining a Future for Taiko

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

On Ensemble collaborator, Byron Au Yong participated in the recent Regional Taiko Gathering in Portland and wrote the following essay. Congratulations to Portland Taiko, the workshop leaders, and all the participants on putting together an innovative conference to great success!

Imagining a Future for Taiko – by Byron Au Yong

Stanford Taiko visit

Thursday, September 6th, 2012

Stanford Taiko was passing through LA on a recent excursion and dropped by for a morning of drumming. We had a good time trying out a few drills and playing Maracas together. I introduced them to our bike, Alphonse, with whom they immediately bonded.

Thanks for the fun, ST! Looking forward to seeing you guys again!

Recent book reviews — August 2012

Saturday, September 1st, 2012


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