TATAKI: Taiko & Shamisen Workshop Series


About Tataki

The Taiko drum and three-stringed shamisen may seem like two completely different instruments, yet both instruments share what is called tataki. Though “tataki” simply means “striking,” the deep-rooted fundamentals of tataki is what connects both instruments together. This connection is why many taiko players are able to pick up shamisen with great ease, and vice-versa.

The inaugural TATAKI: Taiko & Shamisen Workshop Series will be held on September 1-2, 2018 at the Mountain View Buddhist Temple. Tataki will feature two artists who are both distinguished musicians and experienced teachers: Kyle Abbott (shamisen) and Eien Hunter-Ishikawa (taiko). The unique format of Tataki will combine hands-on classes for both beginning and experienced practitioners of shamisen and taiko.


In order to accommodate any student with an interest in learning, we have created the following “track” structure:

Shamisen Player Track: This track is intended for current practitioners of shamisen. You do not need to be an advanced player, but you should know the basics (how to hold the bachi and hit the strings).

Taiko Player Track: This track is intended for current practitioners of taiko. You do not need to be an advanced player, but you should know the basics (basic kata in naname and betta stance, hitting techniques, Renshu Taiko, Matsuri Taiko).

Total Newbie Track: This track is intended for people with no exposure to either instrument. You will attend the beginner workshops in the area of your choice, and can choose to observe the intermediate/advanced workshops or use the time for independent practice.

If you have any questions about which track you should attend, please send a message to Eien <eienhunter@gmail.com> or Kyle <kyle@bachido.com>.

About the Instructors

Eien Hunter-Ishikawa is a musician, educator, and composer based in Portland, Oregon. He is a member of the contemporary taiko quartet On Ensemble and continues to be in high demand as a taiko instructor incorporating traditional and contemporary techniques. Eien holds a Master of Music degree in percussion and has performed extensively as a member of the Kenny Endo Taiko Ensemble. Find out more about Eien at his website – http://www.eienhunterishikawa.com.
Kyle Abbott, founder of Bachido and ShamiCamp, has passionately dedicated himself to the Japanese shamisen since the age of 14. From learning how to play and build the instrument, all the way to becoming a professional performer and teacher of the shamisen.With his performance and international workshops, Kyle seeks to inspire the world with the Japanese shamisen. Check out his solo page – http://www.threestringkyle.com.

Original TATAKI Composition

Paring the unique qualities of taiko and shamisen, Eien and Kyle are carefully composing an original piece which you will learn as you expand your skills! The composition is arranged to be played with taiko and shamisen either individually or together. Bring the song back home to enjoy by yourself or play with your group!

Public Lecture-Demonstration

On Saturday evening, we will host an informal lecture-demonstration on the history and unique aspects of the two instruments. Kyle and Eien will then perform together. This portion of the workshop will be open to the public. Donations are welcome!

Schedule (subject to change)

The table below gives you an idea of how the track-system will work.

Registration Fees

  • Early Registration: $200 (closes on 6/30)
  • Regular Registration: $225 (closes on 8/24)

A $25 discount will be available to shamisen players who are willing to lend their instrument to be used during the taiko players’ beginning workshops.