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KS Cover no. 75 2006 August

August 2006 :: 075

Chick Corea

Aug 22

Blue Note, Osaka

Chick Corea has been called 'one of the most prolific composers of the second half of the twentieth century'. Since his debut release Tones for Joan's Bones forty years ago in 1966 Corea has amassed a recording collection of over one hundred albums, which have gone on to earn him twelve Grammy's and forty eight nominations. Over the course of his career he has played with just about every legendary musician that one could name including Sara Vaughan, Stevie Wonder, Miles Davis and Eric Clapton.

Born Armando Anthony Corea in Chelsea, Massachusetts in 1941 he began to study the piano at just four years of age. His professional musical career kicked off in his early twenties when Corea picked up his first gig playing piano for Cab Calloway. An impressive start to a young mans career and a portent of things to come.

Through the years Corea's music has shifted, changed, adapted, broadened and openly welcomed music of numerous genres; avant-garde to bebop, fusion to classical (in 2000 Corea recorded Corea Concerto with The London Philharmonic Orchestra) the list goes on.

His latest album, which was premiered on July 1st of this year in Vienna, Austria as part of the Mozart Year Festivities, The Ultimate Adventure is a concept album based on the novel of the same name by L. Ron Hubbard. Corea, a fan of Hubbard's work, says that it is 'my own personal portraiture and depiction of my impressions of the book'. Corea is fortunate in that his circle of friends is made up of a vast melting pot of musical virtuosity, which he has been able to call upon yet again to back him on the album. One such friend is flute player Hubert Laws who has known Corea since 1960 when they met in New York. Of Corea's musical compositions, Laws says 'Chick doesn't stay in one place he keeps going up and up'.

Influential American Jazz pianist/keyboardist composer.
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥10,600-¥12,600
Tel: 06-6342-7722


Aug 16

Zepp, Osaka

Formed just over ten years ago in 1995, Sweetbox, originally 'created' by German producer GEO as an outlet for his own musical ideas, has just released their latest album Addicted and will be spending the whole of August touring Japan. This lengthy stay amounts to the fact that Sweetbox are just as popular in Japan as they are in Europe. In fact they have a Japanese website and in 2003 released an unplugged version of the album Jade (a number 1 hit in Europe) only available in Japan and last year to celebrate their ten year anniversary they released a greatest hits album which also was only available in Japan. In return they have been rewarded with two Japanese Grammies (for the track 'Everything's Gonna Be Alright').

Those familiar with Sweetbox will be aware of the change in style that they have taken since their beginnings. The early recordings were straight dance/club tracks that brought great success for a couple of years. 1998 was a hiatus but they returned a year later with teenage Californian born. Japan raised Jade Villalon on vocals (interestingly Jade took her first steps in to the media light aged just 3 when she did a Japanese TV commercial for ramen noodles). From here the music became more pop, more commercial to a wider audience and in 2001 the album Classified went Gold in Japan. Other credits to their name include recording tracks for the computer game Final Fantasy X-2 as well as a contributing to a Japanese television commercial for Subaru cars.

Female vocal fronted outfit sampling classical with pop/dance
Time: 7pm • Entyr: ¥6,800
Tel: 06-6357-4400
Genre: Pop


Aug 21

Blue Note, Osaka

Born Orville Richard Burnell in Jamaica 1968, Shaggy's first hit single 'Oh Carolina' introduced a vocalist who would bring reggae music to a much broader audience than it had been accustomed to by adding elements of hip-hop and pop.

Best known for his distinctive subbaritone vocals his most recent releases haven't reached the heady heights of his six-times platinum number one album Hot Shot in 2000 though he has lost none of his unique and charismatic style that continues to make him a crowd pleaser across the globe.

But it could all have been so different had events took a different turn. In 1988 Shaggy enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps and was later to be called in to service in the Gulf War of 93, playing his part in Operation Desert Storm!

On returning to the US from Iraq (his family had settled in New York when he was younger) he decided upon a career in music as opposed to the military — a wise choice.

Sub-baritone voiced Reggae-pop maestro
Time: 6:30pm/9:30pm • Entyr: ¥9,000–¥11,000
Tel: 06-6342-7722
Genre: Reggae

Ryoko Moriyama and Akiko Yano

Aug 30

Osaka NHK Hall, Osaka

Many readers may be more familiar with Ryoko Moriyama and Akiko Yano's spouses and siblings than the artists themselves. But that shouldn't detract from the fact that these are two of Japan's best when it comes to genuine musical talent.

Ryoko Moriyama is the mother of folk/pop singer-songwriter Naotaro Moriyama who's hit 'Sakura' brought him in to the public eye. The daughter of US born Japanese trumpet player Hisashi Moriyama, who made his name as starting the first big band jazz scene in Japan after the Second World War, has been a professional singer for four decades. In that time she has released over forty albums and performed live across the globe. In 1996 she was invited as a special guest to the Sacramento Jazz Festival and also shared the stage with jazz legend Michel Legrand at Carnegie Hall. On that occasion she not only performed her own work but also a number of songs that Legrand had composed especially for Moriyama.

In 1998 Moriyama's exquisite vocals were broadcast to millions when she sang Andrew Lloyd Webber's 'When Children Rule The World' at the opening ceremony of the Nagano Winter Olympics.

Singer-songwriting pianist Akiko Yano released her debut album Japanese Girl in 1976. Yano was Married to the hugely successful Ryuichi Sakamoto from 1982 until 2002 and has lived in the US since 1990. Her ex-husband's achievements aside, Yano has been a household name in Japan since she was just twenty-one years old and with twentyfour albums to her name she has been described in America (New York Times) as 'a Japanese Carole King — a world class songwriter'. Outside Japan her popularity has gradually grown and grown, and she has worked with many international recording artists (even reciting a children's story with Peter Gabriel).

And for those of you with children you may or may not be aware that the end credits song to the NHK aired children's programme Birdy is performed by non-other than Akiko Yano. Even if you don't have kids it's worth watching just to catch the tune!

Ryoko Moriyama's 40th Anniversary Concert
Japanese Jazz/Pop vocal singer-songwriter special collaboration.
Time: 6:30pm • Entry: ¥6,800
Tel: 06-6233-8888
Genre: Female Vocal/Piano

Live Listings August


8/5 @ Umeda Shangri-La, Osaka
7pm • ¥2,800 Tel: 06-6535-5569


8/5 @ Blue Note, Osaka
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥4,500-¥6,500 Tel: 06-6342-7722
Super Unit


8/6 @ Taku Taku, Kyoto
6:30pm • ¥2,500-¥3,000 Tel: 075-351-1321

The Three Degrees

8/7-8 @ Blue Note, Osaka
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥7,000-¥9,000 Tel: 06-6342-7722
Female Vocal Trio

Zazen Boys

8/8 @ Namba Hatch, Osaka
7pm • ¥3,500–¥4,000 Tel: 06-6341-3525

Chicago Slim

8/12 @ Taku Taku, Kyoto
7pm • ¥1,000 Tel: 075-351-1321

Juan formerly Los Van Van

8/12 @ Namba Hatch, Osaka
6pm • ¥5,500 Tel: 06-6233-8888
Cuban Salsa Group

Summer Sonic inc. Metallica/Linkin Park/Muse/Arctic Monkeys/Massive Attack

8/12–13 @ WTC Open Air Stadium & Zepp, Osaka
All Dayers (11am start) ¥13,500(1 day)– ¥24,500(2 days)
Tel: 06-6233-8888

Ron Carter Quartet

8/15-16 @ Blue Note, Osaka
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥6,400–¥8,400 Tel: 06-6342-7722

Road of Major

8/15 @ Namba Hatch, Osaka
7pm • ¥3,000 Tel: 06-6233-8888


8/16 @ Zepp, Osaka
7pm • ¥6,800 Tel: 06-6357-4400


8/17 @ Namba Hatch, Osaka
7pm • ¥6,300 Tel: 06-6233-8888


8/17 @ Zepp, Osaka
7pm • ¥4,700 Tel: 06-6357-4400

Naoka Terai Quintet

8/17-19 @ Blue Note, Osaka
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥5,800-¥7,800 Tel: 06-6342-7722
Jazz Violin

Fusanosuke Kondo

8/18 @ Taku Taku, Kyoto
7pm • ¥4,500-¥5,000 Tel: 075-351-1321


8/21 @ Blue Note, Osaka
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥9,000-¥11,000 Tel: 06-6342-7722

Chick Corea

8/22 @ Blue Note, Osaka
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥10,600– ¥12,600 Tel: 06-6342-7722

Chihiro Yamanaka

8/23-24 @ Blue Note, Osaka
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥5,000–¥7,000 Tel: 06-6342-7722
Jazz Piano


8/25-26 @ Blue Note, Osaka
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥6,400- ¥8,400 Tel: 06-6342-7722

TM Revolution

8/27 @ Osakajo Hall, Osaka
5pm • ¥6,500 Tel: 06-6233-8888
J-Pop/Rock Male Vocalist

Ryoko Moriyama & Akiko Yano

8/30 @ Osaka NHK Hall, Osaka
6:30pm • ¥6,800 Tel: 06-6233-8888
Female Vocal/Piano

The Ventures

8/31 @ Kosei Nenkin Kaikan Gaijutsu Hall
6:30pm • ¥6,000 Tel: 06-6362-7301
Guitar 60s Group

Larry Carlton & Robben Ford

9/1 @ Blue Note, Osaka
6:30pm/9:30pm • ¥6,900– ¥8,900 Tel: 06-6342-7722
Fusion Blues Guitar


9/1 @ Club Quattro, Osaka
7pm •¥4,000 Tel: 06-6362-7301

The Great Jazz Trio by Hank Jones

9/1 @ Shinkobe Oriental Theater, Kobe
7pm • ¥6,500-¥8,500 Tel: 078-291-1100
Jazz Piano Trio

The Futureheads

9/4 @ Club Quattro, Osaka
7pm • ¥5,500 Tel: 06-6535-5569


9/6 @ Namba Hatch, Osaka
7pm • ¥7,500 Tel: 06-6233-8888

Compiled by Phillip Jackson

:: Online Articles


Mt. Sosha




Ishiyama & Miho Museum






Iya Village


Yoron Island

:: Kansai Listings


Up to date cinema listings guide so you always know what's on, where and when!

:: ART

Best exhibitions + Kansai art listings


Best events + Kansai event listings


Best gigs + Kansai live listings


Parties not to miss + Kansai club listings

:: Also in this month's mag


Cafe Terrace de Paris, Kitano


VADE MECVM., Utsubo Park


Best festivals & listings + hanabi


Japan revealed + Random Walk


Best films + cinema listings


Nihongo to go


I Scream, you Scream, everybody loves ice cream
Japanese ice creams


Life during wartime
Escape from Beirut


A horror movie in heaven
Bokor National Park, Cambodia