Music

GenRyu Arts celebrates 15th anniversary with ‘Rabbit in the Moon’

Born in early summer, fireflies are summer bugs: they die before seeing the fallen leaves. The ephemeral summer bugs made a rare appearance at the Brava Theater in San Francisco’s Mission District, and lighted the theater with the sound of Japanese taiko drums. GenRyu Arts’ new performance, “Tsuki no Usagi,” or the Rabbit in the […]

A world through Coltrane: Asian American Orchestra pays tribute to jazz legend

“India & Africa: A Tribute to John Coltrane” is an hour-long set that Anthony Brown’s Asian American Orchestra premiered on Sept. 29 at Yoshi’s San Francisco. The two-part concert plays tribute to jazz legend John Coltrane’s religious and spiritual expression found in his later works, when they became particularly spiritually oriented with the 1964 release […]

Multiracial Enka Singer Jero ‘Helps Connect Cultures’

“I’m at a loss for words, it’s really humbling to be here,” Pittsburgh-native and enka sensation Jero told the audience at his sold-out March 28 show at the Palace of Fine Arts Theatre in San Francisco. “I never imagined being able to perform like this in a foreign country.” The 28-year-old mixed-race Nikkei paused and […]

Enka Singer Jero Embraces Cultural Heritage, Embarks On U.S. Tour

Enka is often described as the most traditional of all popular music in Japan, usually considered distinct from the very broad J-pop category that includes “non-Japanese” musical genres such as rock, dance and hip-hop. When enka singers visit the U.S., they often draw intimate crowds of older Nisei and Shin-Issei. However, when current enka sensation […]

A Hip-Hop Element: Dan the Automator Launches Audio Alchemy Deejay Series at Yoshi’s San Francisco

Dan Nakamura — better known in the music industry as Dan the Automator — has enjoyed phenomenal success as a producer in hip-hop and beyond, putting together such notable albums as the eponymous debut for Gorillaz, a pair of Handsome Boy Modeling School collaborations with Prince Paul, and the high-concept “Deltron 3030” record. He’s also […]

Saijo Hideki, the Ultimate Entertainer

Relaxed, coiffed and dressed stylishly in a skinny tie and patent shoes, Hideki Saijo does not look the least bit jetlagged from a 10-hour plane ride. Speaking fondly of his career, band members and memories of San Francisco, he is completely at ease, which would make sense, given that he has entertained and performed in […]

‘Ukulele Strikes a Chord with San Jose Japantown Music Instructor

Originally trained as a computer hardware programmer, Rodney Takahashi has turned his passion for the ‘ukulele into a successful career as a music instructor. Takahashi teaches lessons at his store, Ukulele Jams, at 565 North Sixth Street in San Jose’s Japantown. The classes cover ‘ukulele picking, strumming and music theory. Takahashi, who originally operated his […]

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