Roland has previewed the TAIKO-1 Electronic Taiko Percussion, a portable electronic taiko drum with a versatile range of Japanese percussion sounds.
It infuses the classic taiko experience with the benefits of modern music technology.
Japan’s taiko drumming tradition has been deeply woven into the country’s culture since ancient times. Over a million people in Japan play the taiko, and the instrument’s popularity is spreading around the globe. However, the giant sound, large physical size, and regular maintenance needs of taiko drums make them impossible for many people to play and learn. Professional taiko performers face challenges as well, as the drums are hard to carry, costly to ship, and difficult to amplify in some venues.
The TAIKO-1’s physical design is based on the katsugi okedo daiko, a popular taiko drum carried with a sling over the shoulder. But the modern digital sound engine expands the instrument’s range much further, providing a large array of taiko percussion sounds at the touch of a button, plus the ability to import user WAV sounds via USB. Roland’s legendary mesh heads deliver authentic playability, with dual-zone trigger technology and positional sensing providing wide tonal range and full dynamic response.
Th eTAIKO-1’s mesh heads also offer acoustically quiet performance for practicing anytime and anywhere, something that’s impossible with a traditional taiko drum. Users can plug in headphones and enjoy big, dynamic taiko tones with barely a whisper heard by family members and neighbors. Traditional jiuchi backing patterns are available for timing practice and performance accompaniment, while built-in Bluetooth allows users to stream backing music and lesson content wirelessly from a smartphone.
The TAIKO-1 can be quickly disassembled, making it easy to carry in a small vehicle or on public transportation. Users can play for up to five hours on eight AA rechargeable Ni-MH batteries, with no need to fuss with external power. And by connecting the TAIKO-1’s audio output to a wireless system such as the BOSS WL series, they can roam the stage with no cables to get in the way. It’s due for release in July for US$1500.