Michael gets ready to do Jimi (pictured above)
I went down to see my friends playing in a "To a God Unknown" gig last week.
The band played at the Wall, which is a venue in Gong Guan 公館 (about a fifteen minute walk from my place in Mucha 木柵). The band has definitely evolved since I saw them play last. They used to stick to three guitars and the drums. On Wednesday, they were one guitar (bass), drums, a singer-sampler (an idea the band adamantly rejected in the past) and a guy on a Mac. Rafe, the boyish and jocular leader of To a God Unknown, was absent as he was stranded on Lanyu Island 蘭嶼 (also called by some Orchid Island). Actually, he was stranded there for ten days on account of all flights in and out of the island being suspended because of the string of typhoons passing through the region. His parents, here for a vacation from the U.K., were stranded alongside Rafe, his wife and son. They made their escape on Thursday, which is a good thing because a category five typhoon is laying waste to Taiwan as I write. I just saw on the local news at lunch time that most of the transportation around the island has been shut down. That surely must go for Lanyu.
BTW, Michael Turton has pointed out a missionary blog:
This is a fascinating example of how some missionaries, in all their excitement, can misread a local culture. In Taiwan, people do not normally get involved in other people's families or business this way.