Sunday, August 17, 2008


I love the sound of taiko. Taiko drums are often heard in summer in Japan. We hear them at festivals that we call matsuri.

The first taiko performance I ever saw was in Asakusa, near the famous temple we call Sensoji. I was very impressed by the performance. All the drummers were very small women. They had so much energy.

We can see taiko concerts too in summer too. I attended a great concert given by Amanojaku on the thirteenth of August at the Nerima Cultural Centre. The concert was a celebration of the 100th anniversary of Japanese immigration to Brazil. The concert was fantastic. I was very tired and sleepy but I did my best to keep my eyes open because it's important to SEE taiko as well as hear taiko. A taiko performance is like a dance!

This video is from Amanojaku's DVD called The Soul Beat of Japan. I hope you enjoy this example of traditional japanese culture as much as I did.
Do you like Taiko? Do you play Taiko? Please leave a comment?

Monday, August 11, 2008

World Happiness Music Festival

I went to the World Happiness Music Festival. The World Happiness Music Festival was held at Yumenoshima Park. Fourteen bands played including: The Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra, anonymass, LASTORDERZ, Keiichi Suzuki's band Captain Hate and the Seasick Sailors, ccc (This is really the band's name. I don't know how to pronounce it.), Pupa, naomi and goro, Bonnie Pink, Lily and Frankie, Ganga Zumba, NRT320 with Maki Nomiya, Sheena and the Rockets, Tokyo Burabo and HASYMO. HASYMO is the new name for Yellow Magic Orchestra (YMO). The bands that I enjoyed the most were The Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra, Pupa, Ganga Zumba, and HASYMO.
Here are some photos I took at the festival.

Bonnie Pink


I really enjoyed HASYMO's performance. I have wanted to see Ryuichi Sakamoto, Haruomi Hosono and Yukihiro Takahashi perform for twenty-five years. I first heard YMO when I was a disc jockey at CJAM-FM radio in Windsor, Ontario, Canada.

Here is a video of HASYMO playing one of my favourite YMO songs, Rydeen.

There was a lot of good food at the festival too. I ate Loco Moco. Loco Moco is Hawaiian food.

Loco Moco made in Japan

Wearing a Hawaiian shirt. Eating Hawaiian food.

Did you go to a music festival this summer? Do you like any of the bands that palyed at the World Happiness Music Festival? Post a comment.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Toyo Gakuen University Open Campus Lesson: English for travel purposes

Welcome to Toyo Gakuen University!
In today's lesson you will learn some useful English for travelling.
I love travelling. Please look at my travel map.

Today we are going to learn how to speak to an immigration officer.
First, Let's learn some useful vocabulary. Click this link: Travel English.
Let's play some games with the new vocabulary. Click this link: TYG Travel English.
Now let's practice speaking to an immigration officer. Click this link: Passport On-line Activities.

Did you enjoy this lesson? Please write a comment.