I met Rome Hamner, one of the founders of Odaiko Sonora, at the Taiko Baka workshop a couple of years ago. (Which! for once I was actually right about the time span. Most times when I think something was a year or two ago it was actually 4 or 5. Or more.) Anyway, one of the highlights of the weekend actually was playing ji for her on the big big drum. So when I decided to go to Arizona I hoped I’d get to visit her too. She did point out that Tucson is not exactly on the way to Phoenix, but I figured it’s closer than I have been or probably will be for a while, so what the heck.
I was also hoping to see their dojo, it’s always neat to see other groups’ practice spaces. Turns out they were actually having a performance the evening I’d be in town. How’s that for timing?! The universe speaks.
The performance was part of the Second Saturdays, downtown events with entertainment and food.
I arrived with plenty of time, and thought I’d wander around a bit, check out downtown, see what else was going on. I had totally spaced out that, during PST, there’s a time difference between California, where I had started the day, and Arizona. Fortunately I happened to look at my phone, which had the correct time. Magic, go from early to on time in the blink of an eye. Good thing I’d passed up the boot store!
The cold front that had dumped snow on the Grapevine was passing through Tucson too, so it was a little chilly. Probably not helped by my expectation that, “Hey, it’s Arizona, it’ll be warm!” It even rained a bit during the performance!
It was a super fun show! Almost all songs that were new to me, it was a nice mix of Japanese traditional pieces, modern works by others and group originals. I particularly enjoyed Korekara, which Sonoma County Taiko also plays, but with a totally different arrangement.