After months of living in a cultural desert, there were three outings in the same week. After ‘Strictly’ and ‘Guys and Dolls’ it was off to the Bridgwater Hall, last Friday, to see the Kodo Drummers from Japan. I’d heard of them and seen them on TV but never live. When I saw they were coming to Manchester I thought they would be perfect to take, good friend, Andy, and his lovely girlfriend, Leanne, to after they turned up at the hospital with a card and chocolate when I needed it most months ago. Andy is an accomplished drummer himself and I keep getting at him to do something with it. But running a house and a life needs a steady income so that has to come first. But, with a bit of luck and being in the right place at the right time, I’m convinced he could do well. I’d hate him to get to 70 and wonder ‘what if?’

Andy and Leanne had no idea what they were going to see and I suppose it could have all gone horribly wrong. It didn’t. Well I doubt it did. We caught the train into Manchester and began the evening in my new favourite, Refuge Bar, at the Principal Hotel drinking cocktails. Life is hard.

It was then down to the Bridgewater for the concert. The Kodo Drummers are good on TV but are amazing live. They beat rhythms on drums of various sizes, singly, in pairs, in threes, the entire ensemble. From quiet, complex rhythms to great walls of thunderous sound from huge drums. We marvelled at how they kept together as the rhythms became more and more complex, till the sound filled the hall and your body rhythms meshed with the sound from the drums. It was thrilling. They must just go into the zone and do it. If they thought about what they were doing or where they were they would lose it. Lots of practice I suppose.

Some pictures of the tour from the Kodo Drummers. Many thanks to them for them…

We went to Homemade Burger Co. on Deansgate for some supper. Then it was home on the train.

Here’ s a little video of the Kodo Drummers in action. We saw some of this but I think they change the concert for each venue to keep it fresh and to rest the drummers. As you can see you need a lot of strength and physicality to be one of these drummers, especially the guys on the huge drums…

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