Taiko Drumming

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In the article ‘“She's Really Become Japanese Now!’: Taiko drumming and Asian American identifications”, author Paul Jong-Chul talks about taiko drumming and how performers have conflicted views on the identity of the taiko group Soh Daiko. The author explains that he was also once apart of the Soh Daiko group, which is an Asian American performing group. The group included members of Asian ancestry such as, Asians who live in America, Japanese Americans, Chinese Americans, Korean Americans as well as Filipino Americans. Asian American identity is often associated with homogeneity. The author focuses on the Soh Daiko to show the difficulties in deciding what the group’s identity should be associated with. The author states that both the music as a sound symbol and the overall presentation of the group shows how Asian American identity is created and conflicted. In the article “Taiko in Asian America”, author Deborah Wong writes from her own experiences as a Taiko drummer. She starts off describing the feelings she felt when performing. She then introduces her teacher, Reverend Tom and the experience he had had as a Taiko drummer before forming his own group called the Satori Daiko. Wong concludes that politics of ethnicity in taiko are never ending, but when she plays she makes sure that she learns something about Asian Americans.

In the article, “Asian Masculinities and Parodic Possibility in Odaiko Solos and Filmic Representations”, author Paul Jong-Chul talks about how performers have influenced the way Asian masculinity is represented in film and music. Movies and the way Asian male bodies are seen on stage and screen have influenced the taiko tradition, odaiko. The Odaiko solo is the representation of power. The other than goes on to explain how the odaiko solo is performed. Soloists wear a fundoshi which helps show the musical element of the performance but also the body of the performer. Odaiko means big taiko and is the largest drum in a Taiko...
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