Due to the pandemic, the Ryūkyū Fue Kenkyūjo will be holding their concert online on YouTube for free this year. Also called Ryūteki, the Ryūkyū fue (flute) is a beautiful instrument and although it’s an accompaniment instrument in classical music, it will be interesting to see how it’s performed for this concert. The concert will also feature musicians from Nomura-ryu Koten Ongaku Nomura-ryu Ongaku Kyokai.
Save the date-Oct 11th (Indigenous People’s Day): Film screening of First Language and panel discussion + my short yuntaku (chat) with the one and only @Awich098 on rap and Okinawan identity!https://twitter.com/gritsnsushi/status/1445342251245264902
It’ll be on Zoom and hopefully someone will upload it to YouTube for those of us unable to attend.
If you missed the livestream for the “Authors in Conversation: Akemi Johnson & Elizabeth Miki Brina“, there’s now an archive version for VOD! Mariko Middleton (Ichariba Choodee podcast) did a great job in moderating the conversation.
We will take a brief dive into the elements surrounding this incredible unique land, people, and culture through the the lenses of authors Akemi Johnson, Night in the American Village, and Elizabeth Miki Brina, Speak, Okinawa, in a conversation moderated by Mariko Middleton of the Ichariba Choodee: Okinawan Voices and Stories Podcast. We’ll talk about identity, inspiration, history, and inquire into the future of Okinawa, concluding with hopes and dreams.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hovi5WvoD7E
Having both authors’ audiobooks in our Audible library, who would have thought that we would be able to see this wonderful conversation take place. So awesome.
It’s hard to believe that the book The Power of Okinawa: Roots Music from the Ryukyus is already celebrating its 20th anniversary this month. For it …The Power of Okinawa – 20th Anniversary
Okinawan trance music?! Originally released in 1998 but now making its way to online music services is SARABANDGE’s album “Okinawan Trance Music”. The album has a mix of Uchinaa folk music and originals. I can imagine hitting play and having the album run in the background.
Up till now, the Miss Okinawa YouTube channel focused primarily on places to eat and visit while in Okinawa (which happens to be the main part of their job) but they recently released a video entirely in Uchinaaguchi and in 4K! (Yes, they as most other Uchinaa YouTubers still use Okinawa Hougen instead of Uchinaaguchi. Sigh.) The video is wonderfully narrated by Komine Wakako of the Miyagi-ryu Toyobukai Miyagiryuubu Kenkyuujo.
It’s probably our most anticipated release of 2021 and now we have everything we’ve been waiting for — well almost everything as 11/12 is the release date. We have the awesome album art, we have the amazing lead single “Shimanchu”, and we have a super fun music video (created by Floating Room’s Maya Stoner).
We’ve had “Shimanchu” on heavy rotation since its release and it’s a banger. This part in the song especially hits close to home for many of us:
I’m an islander but I’m away from my island, so I am the only island here.https://www.kexp.org/read/2021/9/28/portlands-floating-room-announce-shima-ep-share-excellent-and-furious-lead-single-shimanchu/
There was a really cute Twitter exchange between Floating Room (@floating_room) and artist Nami Oshiro (@namioshiro) where Maya replied “makes me feel way less of an island”. It shows that although we’re (Uchinanchu) spread out all over the world and away from our island, the connections we make with each other lets us know that we’re not alone and not the only island here.
October 30th is World Uchinānchu Day and to celebrate there will be a two-part live talk show with special guests Alberto Shiroma (Diamantes) and entertainer Ryuchell. The talk show will be an in-person event (subject to change) and it will also be live-streamed! It looks like the talk show is being produced by the same team behind the 7th Worldwide Uchinānchu Festival so they will also be doing a presentation and award ceremony for its official theme song. We’ve been waiting to see/hear the official theme song and to see who the lucky musician is. Here’s a link (YouTube) to last year’s event.
While the duo is currently on hiatus, they made an appearance on NHK Okinawa’s “Uchinaa de Asobo” show which aired on 9/24 with a second showing on 10/1. They have kept archives of past video segments like the stories, songs, and theatre (Koja Misako’s in the “Ganchoo” episode!) so we’re hoping that they’ll upload i-Dushi’s appearance too.