Sumida Jazz Festival

昨日の昼に3年連続『Sumida Jazz Festival』に出演しました。2時に『高澤綾』クインテットと共演して、4時からピアノソロで演奏しました。錦糸町の付近ではたくさんのジャズミュージシャンが演奏していました。僕の演奏の両方は東武ホテルレバントに行われました。また来年4年目に同じフェスティバルに出演出来れば嬉しいなと思います。

I played yesterday afternoon for the 3rd straight year at Sumida Jazz Festival. At 2 o clock I played with Aya Takazawa's Quintet and at 4pm I did my own solo show. There are dozens of venues that have jazz all around Kinshicho Station in Tokyo. Both of my shows happened to be at the same venue in a nice hotel lobby. I hope next year to make it 4 years in a row at the same festival.

With Aya Takazawa

Playing solo

Lighting fireworks after the show


Piano X 2

日本に来て初めて昨日の夜ディオピアノコンサートをやりました。いうまでもなくのですが、ピアニストに会う機会があまりないので、ピアニスト同士で共演したり色々話したリすることが出来て本当に楽しかったです。他のピアニストの名は『森丘ヒロキ』でした。素晴らしいピアニストでした。お互いのエネルギをもらって良い演奏が出来て、お客さんも興奮してくれました。日本に来る前にアリゾナの友達であり、ジャズピアニストでもある『Andy Margolis』と数回ディオをのコンサートをやりました。そのコンサートはどんなに楽しかったか昨日の夜に思い出しました。

For the first time since coming to Japan I got the chance to play a duo piano gig. For obvious reasons I have met very few pianists since coming to Japan so it was nice to play and hang out with a fellow jazz pianist. His name was Hiroki Morioka and he sounded fantastic! We had a lot fun feeding off each other and the crowd also seemed to be really into it. Before moving to Japan I had the chance to do several duo piano shows with a friend of mine from Phoenix, Andy Margolis. This show last night made me remember how much fun those shows we did were. 

From the show last night!
Duo piano show from 2006.


Tohoku Tour Day 2

昨日、宮城県気仙沼でライブを2回やりました。最初に『Light Up日本』というフェスティバルに出演しました。その後『Vangaurd』という古いジャズ喫茶店で演奏しました。お店の看板が被害を受けて、周りに津波に流されたビルもあったのですが、どうにかこのビルはまだ残っていました。町の中でビルのほとんどが流された区域がたくさんありました。残っているビルはずっと使えない状態です。

We played 2 shows yesterday in Kesennuma. The first show was at a music festival called Light Up Japan. The second show was at an old jazz café called Vangaurd. Although the main sign was damaged by the tsunami the building somehow survived although most of the buildings nearby are completely gone. This town was one of the hardest hit towns by the tsunami last year. There are large sections of the town where nearly all the buildings were completely washed out into the ocean. The few that remain are uninhabitable.
The people at the show were so excited for the show that it made it a very memorable performance. Miyuki Hatakeyama is from Kesennuma and some of her songs are about her hometown and also about the tsunami which made it a very emotional performance for the audience and for the musicians. I felt very lucky to be there and hope I get a chance to perform there again in the near future. I met some great people and got a chance to hear first hand some of the hardships that people went through and are continuously going through. Our taxi driver was once an entrepreneur but his business was destroyed by the earthquake and he had to become a taxi driver to support his family. He was also a very serious guitar player but his very special guitar was destroyed by the tsunami and he has no time to play anymore because he works very long hours driving his taxi. I hope he gets a chance to play again in the future.
I am so grateful that I got the chance to go on this tour and meet so many interesting people. I hope I get a chance to do more performances in this part of Japan.

The band and the people who put on the show!


Tohoku Tour Day 1 with Miyuki Hatakeyama


This is my first time to go to the north east part of Japan. I am playing piano for a really great singer named Miyuki Hatakeyama. First thing we did when we arrive was to take some really goofy pictures. The show we played last night went really well. I played on an immaculately kept 9 foot steinway. The crowd was really into the music and we signed CD's for about 30 minutes after the show. Today we have an afternoon show and an evening show.

Hard work.



The Early Bird Cafe With Yu Manabe


This was only our second time playing together but it seems we have a lot of people who can't wait for the next time including myself. Playing duo with Yu Manabe is so much fun and his energy makes me play in a different way. We played 1 long set to a packed house of about 50 people. It was a nice mix of Yu's and my fans as well as quite of few of my students. It was a really great Sunday afternoon concert and everyone seemed to have a great time. I am working right now to book the next show with Yu so stay tuned. 




I played this past weekend at a really cool jazz club in Yokohama called Junk. Since coming to Japan I haven't had that much chance to play piano trio gigs so it was really refreshing to get a chance to play trio. Yoshifumi Nihonmatsu was on drums and Hiroyuki Yamamoto was on bass. They both sounded great! It wasn't completely packed but it was pretty close and the crowd was really into the music. I had some very "interesting" conversations with some of the customers who had quite a few drinks. Can't wait to play there again!