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Taiko BoomJapanese Drumming in Place and Motion$
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Shawn Bender

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780520272415

Published to California Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520272415.001.0001

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Taiko Drums and Taiko Drum Makers

Taiko Drums and Taiko Drum Makers

(p.25) One Taiko Drums and Taiko Drum Makers
Taiko Boom

Shawn Bender

University of California Press

This chapter introduces the variety of drums used in Japan and begins a discussion of the “taiko boom” by demonstrating how it has helped bring taiko drums and taiko drum makers closer to the mainstream of Japanese cultural life. Japanese drums are typically differentiated based on their size, shape, and material composition. They are also sounded in distinct ways (by hands, sticks, or mallets) and are employed differently in the three main genres of Japanese performance: music of the imperial court (gagaku), music accompanying the classical stage performing arts (koten geinō), and music used in religious ritual or the folk performing arts (minzoku geinō). Prior to the emergence of ensemble taiko drumming, taiko drums were used most extensively within the folk performing arts. This historical context contributed significantly to the development of taiko in the postwar period.

Keywords:   Japanese drums, taiko drums, taiko drum makers, mainstream Japanese culture, folk performing arts, imperial court, stage performing arts

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