Uploaded on Sep 8, 2011
The Yoko Miwa Trio playing the song Mr. B.G., an original composition by Yoko Miwa, written in tribute to pianist Benny Green. This is from their 2010 sold out performance at Scullers Jazz Club in Boston. Yoko Miwa on piano, Greg Loughman on acoustic bass, Scott Goulding on drums.
The acclaimed Japanese pianist Yoko Miwa takes her place as part of a select group of instrumentalists that excel in the jazz world's version of a triple threat: a commanding bandleader; writer of complex compositions; and a performer of virtuoso ability. Nelson Brill, reviewer for Stereo Times, says about a recent performance, "the house was full and Miwa and her trio were in exquisite form. There was lots of great wavelike energy from her piano and beautiful chemistry with the rest of the band, and the audience was leaning in on every note."
The pianist has become a Boston favorite in over a decade of leading the Yoko Miwa Trio, and has earned an international reputation as a lyrical, melodic, and accessible player by performing at venues such as the Kennedy Center, the Philadelphia Museum, and the Monterey Jazz Festival in Noto, Japan. Many hear the influences of Bill Evans and Keith Jarrett, but she also can play with a muscularity associated with the likes of McCoy Tyner. Miwa has released four CDs on major labels in Japan and has appeared on numerous radio shows including NPR, WGBH, WRTI, and WICN among others.
Born in Kobe, Japan, Ms. Miwa studied classical piano from age four and eventually studied with jazz organist/pianist Minoru Ozone (the father of the well-known Japanese pianist Makoto Ozone). She won a scholarship to Boston's Berklee College of Music, and after graduation became the personal accompanist for Grammy award-winning jazz singer Kevin Mahogany. Her performance and recording credits include Slide Hampton, Arturo Sandoval, George Garzone, Sheila Jordan, Esperanza Spalding, Jon Faddis, Jerry Bergonzi, Joe Hunt, Kevin Mahogany, John Lockwood, Johnathan Blake, and Mike Turk.
The Village Voice says "clean sound, delicate balance, inconspicuous beauty."
Jazziz magazine says that "Pianist Yoko Miwa displays unpretentious melodies, elegant phrasing, and the lyrical sensibility of a jazz poet... she's a remarkably fluent mainstream player with a graceful touch and a self-assured notion of where each tune is headed."
All Music Guide says that "what's consistently impressive is her ability to deliver complex and challenging musical ideas in a compelling and yet frequently gentle and inviting way."
Legendary DJ and jazz critic James Isaacs called Yoko: "a technically assured soloist with a clean, singing sound and an occasional penchant for the blues in pastels."
Jazz Review.com says that "Listening to Yoko Miwa play the piano is like listening to the stars that shine at night twinkle at various decibels as they frame the celestial bodies in the evening sky with sound waves of elation and startling beauty."
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