Aya Uchida Born in Kyoto, Aya began to sing as soon as she started to talk. She began taking music lessons at the age of three and continued her vocal activities as a soloist and also in big bands throughout her school years. After graduating from college, Aya met Jo Yamanaka, an acoustic guitarist and composer at a live music club in Kyoto where Jo was performing. Jo asked Aya to sing for him and he loved her vocal style and musical expression. Jo decided to compose original music for Aya and asked Aya to write the lyrics. This started a collaboration of writing original songs with good old Japanese melodies combined with Aya’s new sense of lyrics. In 2009, their first collaborative original single, "Mahalo-Arigato," garnered critical acclaim at the Kansas City Japan festival and also at an event hosted by The Japan Self Defense Force. Aya’s official debut as a professional singer took place in June 2010 when her first album was released. At the same time Aya started her own show/program for a local radio station. Not only in Japan, Aya has performed in many Japan festivals in the US and has also frequently visited the Republic of Haiti to entertain members of the Japan Self-Defense Force, dispatched to provide international relief activities after the 2010 earthquake and also visited children’s orphanages to share her songs and support. Following her second album, Aya started to record all of her songs at a studio in Branson, Missouri, with music arranged and performed by the very finest musicians of Branson, Missouri. As a result, a new genre of Music was created, named “J-Country”.