Uruma City’s Tsuha Shamisen store in Tairagawa upholds the traditional Okinawan performance arts,

and has continued to produce and sell musical instruments since the end of World War II — nearly 70 years. Here,

customers have the unique opportunity to see crafstmen as they apply their craft.

The shop is lined with shamisen, eisa taiko drums, traditional Ryukyu region clothing,

along with kankara Sanshin perfect for souviners and a bounty of other colourful instruments and tools.

There’s so much to see and do just by walking around the store.



Luckily, we were able to see the cutting of the snake skin

that would become the material for the shamisen on the day we visited.

The snake skin was from an Indian Python around 5 to 6 metres in length.

Most of the snake skin is imported from Vietnam, and the skin from one snake is enough to make four to five shamisen.

The best quality skin is near the head of the snake,

which tends to have a better pattern and make for a better sound.

After the skin is cut into separate pieces,

they’re soaked in water until soft then stretched to cover the Shamisen form.

A rod is then added to the shamisen body, and its angle is adjusted.

Even the slightest misplacement will ruin the instrument’s sound.

These artisans’ careful and delicate process creates some of the world’s finest sounding shamisen.

The second generation owner Seiichi Tsuha explained that he wants to spread these instruments to young people

and visitors to Okinawa as a fun way to learn about traditional Japanese performing arts,

and to educate people about the traditional Okinawan performing arts.

The shop front is lined with Shamisens.


The city of Uruma City is actually known for its rich Eisa Shamisen culture,

and the shop receives customers from all ages, and even orders from out of province and abroad.

Thanks to Tsuha Shamisen, this ancient art will continue to be passed from generation to generation.

Take a trip to “Tsuha Shamisen Shop” and enjoy Okinawa’s unique art culture.

Supporting the Ryukyu Performing Arts for 67 years Tsuha Shamisen Shop

Tsuha Shamisen Shop

Location / Uruma City Tairagawa184-1

Telephone / 098-973-3997

Buisness hours / 11:00 AM ~ 7:00 PM

Holidays / Every Sunday