Katsugi Oke Taiko Workshop with Hayashida Hiroyuki

Today (Sunday) is the last day of the 400th Anniversary Celebration at Asano Taiko. Today I will take the Miyake Taiko Workshop, and a singing workshop with Yoshikazu Fujimoto, one of Kodo's oldest members. He'll be teaching the song "Kiyari" which is sung along with Miyake Taiko.

Yesterday I had one workshop and my wife had two. My wife took a workshop on Hachijo Jima Taiko and a Chappa (cymbal) workshop from Ryutaro Kaneko (a former Kodo member). My workshop was with Hiroyuki Hayashida, also a former Kodo member.

From the picture, perhaps you can guess that he is known for Katsugi Oke Taiko playing. In fact, he is one of the first people to play Oke Taiko in that style and is credited with developing and refining Katsugi Oke playing. I took the basic/beginner Katsugi Oke Taiko workshop from him, seeing as I have not really played or learned that style before. We actually didn't get to play that much, but I was impressed with his teaching and I could tell that his philosophy about practicing is very similar to mine. For example, some of the advice he gave us: practice a lot of drills like stick control drills, accent drills, paradiddles, and so on. In fact, he said that you should spend most of your practice time on drills, not on practicing songs. (I completely agree) He also scolded taiko players (in a friendly way) who do not use a metronome during practice. He said the metronome is your best friend. Also, in some of the handouts he gave us, it had more good advice, like "practicing 30 minutes a day is better than practicing three hours once a week." Of course, if you grew up taking music lessons all this is common sense. But one of the nice things about taiko is that it tends to attract a lot of people who do not have much of a musical background, so perhaps it is good to remind people of it from time to time.

The workshop was scheduled for 90 min, but it ended up being more than two hours. Hayashida san said usually his Katsugi Oke workshops are seven hours! So he was challenged to try to fit all of that into 90 minutes. We didn't get a lot of playing time, but I still feel as if I learned a lot. Not only about playing Katsugi Oke, but about the care and treatment of the drums as well. What was the biggest thing I learned? That I need to practice a lot more before I will feel comfortable playing Katsugi Oke Taiko.

Today, my wife will also have a Katsugi Oke workshop from Hayashida san, but she is taking the intermediate level. My workshop was for beginners.


Anonymous said...

I took a lesson once with Hayashida-san here in Tokyo. One of my taiko comrades have a monthly workshop on shimetaiko and katsugi oke taiko with him, and I was very impressed!
Lucky you for the workshop!

Raion Taiko said...

Yes, I would say I was impressed as well. I wished that I could have had one of his full 7 hour workshops. I did talk with him about the possibility of inviting him to Michigan for that purpose though...