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Alexander Michael Cannon

Cambodian music ensemble. Named for the female celestial figures that adorn Angkor Wat, this music and dance ensemble has featured performances of Cambodian music for audiences in the United States since 1986. Dr. Sam-Ang Sam—a master musician who studied with court and village master musicians in Siem Reap and Phnom Penh and who was named a ...

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Akitsugu Kawamoto

American hip-hop group. It was formed in 1995 in Los Angeles by will.i.am (William James Adams, Jr.; b Inglewood, CA, 15 March 1975; rapping, vocals, various instruments), apl.de.ap (Allan Pineda Lindo, Jr.; b Angeles City, Philippines, 28 November 1975; rapping, drums), and Taboo (Jaime Luis Gómez; ...

Article

William Y. Elias

Israeli piano duo. It was formed in 1952 by Bracha Eden (b Jerusalem, 15 July 1928) and Alexander Tamir (b Vilnius, 2 April 1931). They both studied at the Rubin Academy of Music, Jerusalem (Tamir with Schroeder, Eden with Schroeder and Tal), graduating in ...

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Amy Kazuye Kimura

Balinese dance and music group founded in 1979 in the San Francisco Bay Area by Michael Tenzer, Rachel Cooper, and I Wayan Suweca. It has since grown into an internationally recognized ensemble that has toured throughout North America and Bali. Under the leadership of its permanent directors and visiting artists from Bali, its members have studied using traditional methods, foregoing written notation, learning instead through imitation and by rote. The group has performed a variety of Balinese dance and music genres, including ...

Article

Loren Kajikawa

Jazz fusion group. Founded in 1974 by the multi-instrumentalist Dan Kuramoto and the koto player June Okida Kuramoto, Hiroshima took its name from one of two Japanese cities to suffer atomic attack during World War II. It consists of third-generation Japanese Americans and first rose to popularity in the late 1970s amid the Asian American movement, which also provided the impetus for the development of Asian American jazz. Hiroshima’s early sound mixed Japanese instrumentation, notably koto and bamboo flutes, with a blend of electric jazz, funk, and disco soul. In addition to playing a variety of saxophones, flutes, and keyboards, Dan Kuramoto has served as the group’s main arranger and songwriter....

Article

Wendy F. Hsu

Rock band. Formed at Ramapo College in Mahwah, New Jersey, the Hsu-nami is an erhu progressive rock band fronted by Taiwanese American erhu player and composer Jack Hsu. Hsu was classically trained in violin. His erhu training included intensive summer lessons in Nanjing, China. The rest of the group is composed of Tony Aichele (guitar), Brent Bergholm (guitar), Dana Goldberg (keyboard), John Manna (drums), and Derril Sellers (bass). The Hsu-nami integrates an amplified “erhu,” a two-string spike fiddle used in Chinese classical and folk music, into an instrumental progressive rock sound. Their music is marked by virtuosic erhu melodies and shredding solos, in place of vocals, intertwined with heavy guitar riffs, funky rhythms, and metal-driven rock drumming. Part of the new-fusion rock movement, the group recasts the sound of its 1960s and 1970s roots....

Article

Michal Ben-Zur

Israeli ensemble. It was founded in 1972 by the pianist Alexander Volkov, the violinist Menahem Breuer and the cellist Zvi Harell, who was later replaced by Marcel Bergman. Breuer is the leader of the Israel PO and Bergman is its principal cellist; they and Volkov are also active as soloists. The trio's recordings of the complete piano trios of Brahms, Mendelssohn, Schubert and Schumann have been highly praised. The repertory of the group also embraces 20th-century works, some by Israeli composers including Oedoen Partos, Yardena Alotin, Yehezkiel Braun and Ebel Erlich, who dedicated his Piano Trio to the ensemble. The trio performs regularly in international festivals, including Edinburgh and Schleswig-Holstein, and has given many recitals for the BBC. Its members give masterclasses at the RAM, London, the Musikhochschule in Munich and elsewhere....

Article

Michal Ben-Zur

Israeli string quartet. It was founded in 1957 as the New Israel Quartet, to distinguish it from an earllier group known as the Israel Quartet. Its original members were Alexander Tal, Mordecai Yuval, Daniel Benyamini and Yaakov Menze, all of whom played in the Israel PO. During the quartet's subsequent history, the membership changed several times. Zeev Steinberg joined as viola in ...

Article

J.W. Junker

Rock group. Kalapana are Hawaii’s longest-active rock group, with loyal audiences in Hawaii and Japan. Their instrumentation and lyrics are not specific to Hawaii but their image and overall feeling effectively reflect the zeitgeist of island life. In many regards, the group represents Hawaii’s response to the singer-songwriter and R&B fads of the 1970s. Formed in ...

Article

KISS  

Michael Ethen

Rock group. Its foundational lineup comprised bassist Gene Simmons (b Chaim Witz, Haifa, Israel, 25 Aug 1949), guitarist Paul Stanley (b Stanley Harvey Eisen, New York, NY, 20 Jan 1952), drummer Peter Criss (b Peter George John Criscuola, New York, NY, ...

Article

Laba bu  

Margaret J. Kartomi and Andrew C. McGraw

Ensemble of two to four end-blown buffalo horns (bu) and two or three single-head drums (laba), of the central Ngada region of Flores, Indonesia. The horns range from 30 to 40 cm long and each produce one note. The drums, called ...

Article

Letor  

Andrew C. McGraw

(1) Bamboo ensemble of the central Sikka region of Flores, Indonesia. A single performer plays two bamboo stamping tubes (boku) 40 to 50 cm long, one tuned slightly higher than the other. The tubes are closed by a node at the bottom and sounded by hitting them against the ground in alternation. Meanwhile three performers play bamboo idiochord tube zithers (...

Article

Meko  

Andrew C. McGraw

Gong and drum ensemble from Roti, Indonesia, named after the highest-pitched gong. The gongs are often cast locally of iron, but some bronze gongs are imported from Java. Eight to ten gongs hang from tree limbs by rope strung through two small holes drilled into their rims, which are about 4 cm deep. They are played by four or five musicians using unpadded wooden mallets. The gongs are divided into four sections. The lowest range, called the ...

Article

Nancy Yunwha Rao

Instrumental ensemble founded in 1984 by Susan Cheng in New York’s Chinatown. It features Chinese instruments including erhu, yangqin, zheng, pipa, daruan, sanxian, sheng, and dizi. Its members have included Wu man , Tang Liang Xing, and Min Xiao Fen, among others. Performing at museums, schools, and other venues, it has specialized in silk and bamboo music of southern China but has also performed contemporary music. Its concerts from ...

Article

John Spitzer and Neal Zaslaw

‘Orchestra’ has been used in a generic sense to mean any large grouping of instrumentalists. Thus one reads of an Indonesian gamelan orchestra, a Japanese gagaku orchestra, a Chinese drum and gong orchestra, the ‘orchestra’ of a Renaissance intermedio, or even the ‘orchestras’ of the Old Testament. In this article, ‘orchestra’ is treated in a specific and historical sense, as a characteristically European institution that arose in the 17th and 18th centuries and subsequently spread to other parts of the world as part of Western cultural influence. Related information will be found in other articles, for example ...

Article

Donna Lee Kwon

Originally from Korea, p’ungmul (wind object) is a vibrant form of percussion band music and dance that features the changgo (hourglass drum), the puk (barrel drum), the sogo (hand drum), the ching (large gong), and the kkwaenggwari (small gong). A complete ensemble also includes a double-reed instrument called the ...

Article

Terry E. Miller

In Cambodia, the primary classical ensemble played at court ceremonies, some Buddhist festivals, to accompany the large shadow theatre, masked drama, and dance drama. Both the ensemble and its name are closely related to similar ensembles in Thailand (piphat) and Laos (sep nyai/piphat...

Article

Robert C. Provine

Korean percussion group whose name (roughly meaning ‘playing of four objects’) was adopted for a recently developed genre of Korean traditional music. The first performance of this type of music by the original group took place in February 1978 at the Space Theatre in Seoul, when the members were Kim Duk-soo (Kim Tŏksu, ...

Article

Andrew C. McGraw

Ancient Balinese gamelan ensemble associated with pre-Hindu villages. It comprises six metallophones with iron bars suspended over a shallow wooden trough, played with unpadded wooden mallets. Each instrument begins on a different tone of the seven-tone pelog system. The lowest instrument, referred to as the ...

Article

William Y. Elias

Israeli string quartet. It was founded in 1959 and the original members were Chaim Taub (b Tel-Aviv, 1 Aug 1925), Uri Pianka, Daniel Benyamini (b Tel-Aviv, 17 April 1925) and Uzi Wiesel (b Tel-Aviv, 8 Jan 1927). Pianka was replaced in ...