Taku Hirano's career as a professional percussionist is on the fast track and has been called a phenomenon by both his peers and the artists that he has worked for. In less than ten years on the professional music scene, Taku has become one of the top-call percussionists on the touring and recording circuit. He has toured the world with Fleetwood Mac, Whitney Houston, Bette Midler, Stevie Nicks, Lionel Richie, Isaac Hayes, and Tevin Campbell, as well as with international artists such as Japanese popstar Hikaru Utada and Italian popstar Giorgia. He has also performed with Stevie Wonder, LeAnn Rimes, The Backstreet Boys, Sean "Diddy" Combs, Mary J. Blige, Chaka Khan, Brandy, The Neville Brothers, Wyclef Jean, Don Henley, Lindsey Buckingham, Vanessa Carlton, Faith Evans, Teena Marie, Sheila E., The Emotions, Deniece Williams, Oleta Adams, Angie Stone, Patrice Rushen, The Boys Choir of Harlem, and The Alvin Ailey American Dance Company.
Taku has recorded with Oscar, Grammy, and American Music Award-winning artists as diverse as Fleetwood Mac, Dr. Dre, Whitney Houston, The Temptations, Nelly Furtado, Jay-Z, and Lionel Richie, in addition to working on numerous major motion picture and television scores and soundtracks. Several of these albums and movie scores have won Grammy, Emmy, and American Music awards.
He has appeared on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Today Show, Good Morning America, The Early Show, Dateline, Extra, The View, Access Hollywood, The Grammy Awards, The American Music Awards, MTV Unplugged, MTV Europe Video Music Awards, MTV All Access: Whitney Houston, VH-1 All Access: Fleetwood Mac, Soul Train, Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve, and on AOL.com. Taku has also worked with notable jazz, jazz-fusion, and contemporary-jazz artists such as Gary Burton, Joe Zawinul, Jonathan Butler, Tom Scott, Bennie Maupin, and Rick Braun, and with gospel artists, Yolanda Adams, Bebe Winans, Cece Winans, and Brent Jones.
Taku Hirano is well versed in the most current studio and live-performance electronic equipment. Though this is a rarity among many percussionists, it is something that he feels is a necessity for today's musicians in order to convincingly recreate an artists' recorded material in a live-performance situation. In addition to this, he has studied intensively since the age of nine in Classical percussion and drumset, studying with the principal timpanist of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, and with some of the top-call session drummers and percussionists in Los Angeles. Since his mid-teens, he has studied the traditional secular and sacred percussion styles of Cuba, Brazil, West Africa, The Middle East, and India, going as far as studying under master percussionists from Cuba, Northern (Hindustani) and Southern (Karnatak) India, and Ghana (Dagbamba and Ewe styles), enrolling in a graduate studies program in World Music performance at California Institute of the Arts, and attending the Escuela Nacional de Artes (National School of the Arts) in Havana, Cuba. He also received his Bachelor of Music degree cum laude as one of the first hand percussion principals from the prestigious Berklee College of Music.
The combination of his background, experience, and work ethic makes Taku Hirano a unique percussionist who delivers consistently and professionally.