Archive for December, 2012

Work in progress: Squarepusher

Monday, December 31st, 2012

Although I’m hesitant to share this when it’s so rough, in the spirit of “release early, release often”, here is a new taiko piece I’m working on. On Ensemble is chipping away at it, as well as a number of great players in LA, and I’m hoping we’ll debut it next summer. The interlocking rhythms are really challenging and I clearly have to improve my timing precision between now and then. Here’s to more good practice in 2013!

Parts test video
This is a test-run of the four parts of the piece. Aside from the lethargic playing and sloppy timing, it gives a sense of the overall piece and how the parts are intended to fit together.

Squarepusher – work in progress

Here is a very rough draft of the score for the piece. It’s incomplete in parts and hasn’t been split properly into pages, but for the brave taiko explorer, it has the tone and sticking notation. (Below is a PDF single-long-page version, and the original, SVG file. I use the free software, Inkscape, to write my scores.)

Score symbol and kuchishoga legend
I’m working on a more thorough system of kuchishoga which incorporates the various tones of used in Squarepusher. The following document is the current “kuchishoga periodic table” which includes the notation and pronunciation of the various tones.

Recent book reviews — December 2012

Monday, December 31st, 2012


Mark Miyoshi fund raising update

Saturday, December 22nd, 2012

A huge thank you goes out to all of you from the taiko community and beyond that have contributed to Mark’s fundraising drive. As of 12/21/12 we have raised $12,857 to help Mark cover his medical bills. I spoke with Mark recently and he sounded good. He is continuing with physical therapy and will be starting to make taiko again soon. His therapist thought that it would be good for his recovery to start working on taiko again. The bad news is that he has continued to have mini strokes and his doctors have not been able to determine what is causing them. He is going to need further test and will have to see a neurologist to try to get a diagnosis.

We’ll be keeping the fundraising post up until the first of the year and will be continuing to raise funds for Mark given the continued uncertainty of his condition and the upcoming tests that he will need.

Thank you for your help and for your support of one of our great cultural treasures in the taiko community.
Shoji Kameda

Jack Bazaar in Hilo

Thursday, December 20th, 2012

A recording of our performance of Jack Bazaar showed up on YouTube and it’s shot from a nice angle. Thank you to BigIslandKobudo for posting it! (The song starts at about 1:10 in the video.)

Maz and I had a bit of a dangerous moment during “Three’s Company” (3:35) but we managed to pull it together.

The video also includes our performance of After Rain and an encore of Symmetrical Soundscapes by Kenny Endo.

Thanks also to Taishoji for lending us the taiko and stands!

Going car-free in Los Angeles

Sunday, December 9th, 2012

The experiment begins. Yesterday I gave my car to Maz and will try to live car-free in Los Angeles for the next six months.


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