The Way of the Drum
Taiko drumming is rapidly gaining in popularity around the world. An exciting, exhilarating style of ensemble drumming created in Japan in the 1950s, it gathered momentum in subsequent decades in Japan and then in North America, and more recently in Europe, Australia and South America.
This book traces the development of one of the first groups in the UK. It also captures the subsequent development of taiko in the UK and Europe through a focus on community events such as the UK Taiko Festival and the European Taiko Conference.
In this ground-breaking account, Jonathan Kirby explores important questions about how we adopt and adapt art-forms from other cultures and remain authentic and honest. He shares lessons learned and expertise acquired over 20 years as a taiko professional in the UK, and sets out a bold and compelling vision for taiko in future – taiko without borders.
- The Beginning of the Journey
- Preparing the Way
- Kagemusha Junior Taiko
- Youth Taiko Projects
- Teacher Training
- Corporate Workshops
- Kagemusha Taiko Group
- Managing a Taiko Group
- The UK Taiko Festival
- The European Taiko Conference
- The Way of the Drum
Two Thoughts Guiding the Author
Make the book useful:
When Jonathan and his wife, Gabrielle, founded Kagemusha Taiko, hardly anyone in the UK knew what taiko was. Everything had to be created from scratch, including the very reasons WHY anyone should be playing taiko in this part of the world. This story will therefore be of interest to anyone now teaching taiko, playing taiko or leading taiko groups because it shares a lot of lessons learned the hard way as well as plenty of success stories.
Make the book interesting:
The story will also be of interest to taiko teachers, players and enthusiasts everywhere in the world. It is said that you learn a lot about your own culture if you have the chance to compare it with another. Are the differences great or small between European taiko and taiko played in Japan, USA, South America or Australia? Are there things that taiko players around the world might learn from each other?
In terms of ethnomusicology, there are important questions about how music from one culture is adapted when it travels to another. Is taiko appropriately described as "Japanese drumming"? What about when it's played by people who are not Japanese? Is this cultural appropriation? What is "authentic" taiko? The book doesn't answer these questions with theory, but with examples from 20 years of taiko practice.
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Risks and challenges
The book is written. The text has been proofed. The artwork is all prepared. Once the funding target has been reached, we will be able to pay for typesetting and printing, turning 130,000 words into a hardback book of about 280 pages.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)