Ken Chin-Purcell

May 18, 2023

Japan day 3: The Drum Shop

There are two common Japanese sources of things Taiko in California: Asano and Miyamoto. For the KBJ folk dance Michele has already purchased a drum and a couple of other items from Miyamoto, and Miyamoto is where the Shishi Gashira (lion head) is from. So a visit to the Miyamoto mother ship in Asakusa was in order. Michele sold it to me as a “Drum Museum”, which is true, but I then discovered that the museum is on the 4th floor of this drum shop she’s been ordering stuff from, which made me wonder if we were going to need some extra suit cases. (I jest, it’s why were here.)

We met our friend Ryoko at Asakusa station and headed over:


Michele was hoping to slip in with minimal fuss and buy a couple of face masks, but her Taiko friend network forewarned Miyamoto and they were ready for their established customer. So she wasn’t anonymous, but had great service and an English speaking staff person helping.

In addition to a wide range of bachi (drum sticks) and drums there were additional styles of ShiShi:


Including a Ryoko ShiShi


We had the drum museum to ourselves, and it was a treat for Ryoko and Michele to play Japanese drums made from a single piece of wood. The tone was crisp and the tap-tap on the edge had a pleasant ring, solid sounding. Pam and I also started banging things There was a wide variety of percussion instruments from around the world, and about half of them were ok to play.


Miyamoto is holding on to the masks and bachi Michele got, so we will return just before we leave in a few weeks.