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OKI DUB AINU BAND and OKI (third from right) (WOMAdelaide)

OKI is a multi-talented musician from Japan, who produces unique Ainu music with a modern twist. The Ainu are an indigenous ethnic group of people who live in Hokkaido in Japan and in some parts of Russia. OKI was born to a Japanese mother and an Ainu father. After working as a special effects artist in New York, he returned to Japan in 1992 and had a fateful encounter with the Tonkori, a traditional stringed instrument developed by the native Ainu people of Sakhalin. OKI devoted himself to studying the Tonkori, then established the Chikar Studio in order to encourage other Ainu artists and to promote their music to the world. OKI tells us how modern the traditional Ainu music can become and how difficult it is to strike a balance between introducing changes and keeping the tradition. 

Junko Hirabayashi
Published on
Wednesday, February 22, 2017 - 20:17
File size
4.5 MB
9 min 51 sec