YouTube: Kenny Endo in Safe Landing
Gumbo Luau by Rhythm Summit.mp3
“Jazzy…earthy…sassy” (Nadir Magazine, Tokyo)
"His ability to interweave this skill at the traditional taiko style of playing with his facility for jazz drumming has enabled him to create an incredibly dynamic style of performing that captivated the audience and was literally breathtaking." (The Grateful Web, 2013, New York)
One of the leading personas in contemporary percussion and rhythm, Kenny Endo is at the vanguard of the taiko genre, continuing to carve new territory in this Japanese style of drumming. A performer, composer, and teacher of taiko, he has received numerous awards and accolades, including very special recognition in Japan—he was the first foreigner to be honored with a “natori,” a stage name, in Japanese classical drumming.
Kenny Endo was a featured artist on the PBS special “Spirit of Taiko” in 2005. He has performed for such musicians as the late Michael Jackson and Prince, opened for The Who, performed a duet with singer Bobby McFerrin, and is featured on the soundtracks for Kayo Hatta’s film “Picture Bride”, Francis Ford Coppola’s “Apocalypse Now”, and James Cameron’s “Avatar”. He has had a day named for him in by the Mayor of Honolulu “Kenny Endo Day”, and was honored by the National Endowment for the Arts for American Masterpieces. Kenny Endo is a consummate artist, blending Japanese taiko with rhythms influenced by his jazz background and by collaborations with musicians from around the world.
Artist's website: http://www.kennyendo.com
Kenny Endo Contemporary Ensemble, with Kaoru Watanabe on flute, as well as shamisen, koto, and vibes. Kenny and these master musicians take the art of taiko to new dimensions.
Island Breeze: Slack Key Guitar Meets Taiko and Shakuhachi - Kenny Endo, on taiko, has joined with award-winning slack key guitarist Jeff Peterson and shakuhachi (bamboo flute) master Riley Lee—to create a unique blend that draws from taiko, Japanese tradition, and Hawaiian influences for a sound that is a complex and engaging fusion of Pacific sensibilities. “It was a wonderful program. There was a nice balance of interaction, improvisation, and blindingly brilliant ensemble.” –ethnomusicologist at the Honolulu premiere
Kenny Endo Taiko Ensemble - The Kenny Endo Taiko Ensemble is a professional performing group trained by Kenny Endo in his unique, versatile and dynamic style. The group offers performances such as traditional and contemporary taiko ensemble drumming, Japanese lion dance, and taiko collaborations. The ensemble also offers educational events like lecture/demonstrations, workshops, classes, residencies and private classes in taiko and fue (bamboo flute).
Symphony Guest Artist – Kenny Endo is available to guest in works for taiko and symphony. He has performed with the Honolulu Symphony, Hong Kong Philharmonic, and the Tokyo Symphony, and has had two works composed for him: "Let Freedom Ring" concerto for taiko and symphony. Composer: Takeo Kudo; performed by Honolulu Symphony and Hong Kong Philharmonic under conductor Sam Wong. "Concerto for Taiko and Timpani" Composer: Jhou Long.
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