Ho Etsu Taiko delivers a fresh, energetic take on the traditional art of Japanese taiko drumming. Through dynamic, dramatic and energetic drum sequences that combine traditional Japanese instruments—such as the shinobue bamboo flute—with English-lyric vocals, this collective of musicians blends the deep-rooted culture of Japanese American taiko with influences that inspire and celebrate the diversity of its band members. With heart-pounding beats and transcendent rhythms, Ho Etsu achieves its mission of spreading joy through each and every drum sequence with pieces that vividly recreate the lived experiences of the performers and take listeners and concertgoers on a radical musical journey.
Since the collective’s 1997 beginning as an offshoot of Chicago’s Midwest Buddhist Temple, Ho Etsu has grown into a powerful performing ensemble in its own right. The collective spreads their love and knowledge of contemporary taiko music through workshops and classes, where community members can become experts in the unique genre themselves. Demonstrating their own musical talent and passion, the members of Ho Etsu have performed at a variety of music festivals including the Ginza Festival in Chicago and the Anderson Japanese Garden Summer Festival in Rockford, Ill.