Eien Hunter-Ishikawa is a musician, educator, and composer based in Portland, Oregon specializing in drumset, taiko, and shinobue. Born in Japan, his passion for drumming started at an early age through the involvement of a youth taiko ensemble directed by Saburo Mochizuki, a founding member of Tokyo’s pioneering taiko ensemble Sukeroku Daiko. He earned his Bachelor of Music Education at Central Michigan University, where he performed, recorded, and toured as a member of the Robert Hohner Percussion Ensemble under the direction of the late Robert Hohner, and earned his Master of Music at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. During his time in Honolulu, Eien performed and toured extensively as a member of the Kenny Endo Taiko Ensemble throughout the United States and Europe and taught classes at the Taiko Center of the Pacific, a school of traditional and contemporary taiko. He continues his studies of the traditional Japanese music forms Edo Bayashi (festival music of old Tokyo) and Edo Kotobuki Jishi (lion dance of old Tokyo) through master musician and dancer Kyosuke Suzuki.
Eien performs traditional Japanese music and jazz in his vibraphone-shakuhachi duet with Bruce Huebner, and is a member of contemporary taiko quartet On Ensemble. He has collaborated with Alcvin Ryuzen Ramos (shakuhachi), Colleen Lanki (dance, voice), Vancouver Intercultural Orchestra, Hiroshi Yamaguchi (tsugaru shamisen), Naomi Sato (sho), Michael O'Neill's bagpipe ensemble Mearingstone, John Kaizan Neptune (shakuhachi), and Vancouverʼs Silk Road Music.
Eien has performed at the North American Taiko Conference, Chico World Music Festival, Vancouver’s Powell Street Festival, Vancouver International Jazz Festival, Dancing on the Edge Festival, Hawaii International Taiko Festival, Honolulu International Jazz Festival, and the Detroit Montreux Jazz Festival. As an active instructor of percussion, taiko, and shinobue, he has presented workshops at the North American Taiko Conference, World Taiko Gathering, Taiko Baka Gathering, Fue of the Bay, Pacific Northwest Regional Taiko Gathering, and Asano Taiko US. In addition to his work in a wide variety of artistic collaborations, Eien offers private lessons, online instruction, and workshops. www.eienhunterishikawa.com