When I tell you about this band, you’re going to think I’m lying. Pirates Canoe is a Japanese….Americana band. I know, it confused me, too, but there is no denying their authentic folk sound. Started in the summer of 2009, this group from the Kansai region of Japan will fool you into thinking they’re from the Mississippi Valley with their blend of guitars, fiddles and sweet, southern-twanged vocals.
Band Name: Pirates Canoe
Elizabeth Etta (vocals and guitar)
Sara Kohno (vocals and mandolin)
Kanoko Keyaki (vocals and fiddle)
Kazuhiko Iwaki (resophonic guitar)
Takashi “Yossie” Yoshioka (percussion)
Jun Taniguchi (bass)
1 Introductions: Describe you band in ten words or less.
An Americana and roots music group from Kyoto, Japan
iPhone and/or computer (not proud of this answer, but what can I say)
Patty Griffin (Elizabeth), George Gershwin (Sara), Ry Cooder (Kazu), Corinne Bailey Rae (Yossie), Simon & Garfunklel (Dai)
7 Present: How has your band changed or evolved from the beginning?
We started out just wanting to play the music we love, but found out that a lot of people liked what we are doing, and we’ve been supported by so many music lovers in Japan. It’s really encouraging and inspiring.
8 Future: What are your plans and hopes for the future?
Elizabeth now lives in the US, while the rest of the band is in Japan. Hopefully the band will be performing on both sides of the ocean semi-regularly.
9 Survivor: If you were going to be dropped on a desert island and could only bring one book, one movie and one music album with you, what would you bring?
Lord of the Rings, Breakfast Club, Alice by Tom Waits (Elizabeth)
10 Last words: Why should we come see your band? What message would you like to give to your current and potential fans?
A Japanese band that plays bluegrass and American folk is unexpected, we know, but I guarantee you will be pleasantly surprised. We’re really looking forward to our SXSW performances. See you there!