Taro Terahara is one of the leading musicians in the thriving and highly competitive Indian classical music scene in Japan. His music comfortably spans the full range from contemplative soulful alaap (slow non-rhythmic introduction) to exciting, rhythmic jhala (fast-paced finale). He has a great command of sur (tuning) and lay (timing), with the ability to compose innovative taans and tihais on the spur of the moment, yet all of this is tempered by a beautiful humility and devotion to the mood and spirit of the raga. His music both engages the mind and touches the heart.
In 1992 he became a student of Mr. Hiroshi Nakagawa (long-time disciple of Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia) and the following year quit graduate school to devote himself entirely to the practice of Indian classical music. He soon went to India for the first time to take lessons from Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia. From 1997 he began studies under Mr. Amit Roy (disciple of Pt. Nikhil Banerjee), who is generally seen as the father-figure of Indian classical music in Japan, who has guided and refined Terahara’s musical talents to the point where he has now recorded 2 CDs with tabla accompaniment by none other than the great maestro of tabla, Pt. Anindo Chatterjee: Air (2005) and Mist (2006).
Shen Flindell's tabla playing is noted for his clear sound, comfortable rhythmic sense, intuitive accompaniment, wide repertoire, adept bayan (bass) and a feeling of sincere devotion to Guru, Saraswati, Music and Tabla, thanks to many blessings from his Guru-ji, Pt. Ashutosh Bhattacharya . Now an established performer in the Indian classical music circles of Australia and Japan, he has also had successful concerts in India, most notably in the annual Ashu-Babu Memorial Concert in honour of his late Guru-ji, already becoming a major event in the Varanasi musical calendar featuring such great artists as Padma Bhushan Debu Chaudhuri and Ustad Shujaat Husain Khan.
Shen has performed with leading Indian classical artists in India, Japan and Australia, including Smt. Raka Mukherjee, Ustad Ghulam Sadiq Khan, Pinaki Bose, Smt. Gauri Pathare and vocal-sitar duo Debapriya-Samanwaya. Within the field of Indian classical music, he is not only capable in the 4 fields of vocal accompaniment, instrumental accompaniment, Kathak dance accompaniment and tabla solo, but has also given successful accompaniment in Carnatic vocal, Odissi and Bharat Natyam dance performances. Outside the Indian classical sphere Shen is developing a unique style of fusion tabla accompaniment with heavy emphasis on bayan tuning and harmony, as exemplified in his most recent world music group Tibet2Timbuk2, with Tibetan singer Tenzin Choegyal.