21 Oct 2023, Sat, 7.30pm
Esplanade Concert Hall
Having made its debut 10 years ago at Tokyo’s Jazz Auditoria 2013, Blue Note Tokyo All-Star Jazz Orchestra comprises some of the finest jazz players in Japan. For one night only, this acclaimed ensemble returns to Esplanade for an electrifying, soul-stirring night of big band jazz.
Led by trumpet virtuoso and music director Eric Miyashiro, Blue Note Tokyo All-Star Jazz Orchestra has performed at festivals in Japan and around the world. They have also collaborated with renowned artists such as Pat Metheny, Marcus Miller, David Sanborn, amongst others. The orchestra continues to tour the globe with their unique blend of modern Japanese jazz, garnering fans with their larger-than-life big band sound.
Joining the orchestra this evening are guest singer Nao Yoshioka and her impeccable neo-soul stylings; and from Singapore, Mosaic Associate Artist, celebrated composer and jazz keyboardist Chok Kerong on the electric organ.
Blue Note Tokyo All-Star Jazz Orchestra
Emerging out of the famed Blue Note Tokyo jazz club, the Blue Note Tokyo All-Star Jazz Orchestra comprises top players in the Japanese jazz scene, and made its debut in May of 2013 at Jazz Auditoria 2013. The group continued to perform around the world receiving high praise for their performance at the 2014 Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland. In March of the following year, the group performed at Asia’s largest jazz festival, Jakarta International Java Jazz Festival. The group has also performed with top artists such as Pat Metheny, Marcus Miller, David Sanborn, Bob James, and Richard Bona, while calling Blue Note Tokyo home. Musical director and trumpeter, Eric Miyashiro, made his name touring with the great big bands of yore such as the Buddy Rich Big Band and the Woody Herman Orchestra. A Hawaii native, Miyashiro has called Japan home since 1989.
Born in Hawaii, Miyashiro played in a variety of jazz orchestras in middle and high school where he demonstrated virtuosic abilities and soon appeared as a child prodigy on radio and television programs. As a high school senior, he was chosen to represent Hawaii in the American All-State High School Jazz Band and was flown to New York to perform at Carnegie Hall with Maynard Ferguson. Upon graduation from high school, Miyashiro was awarded the Maynard Ferguson Scholarship at Berklee College of Music where he both studied under and performed with several professional jazz players. At 22, he joined the Buddy Rich Big Band and Wood Herman Orchestra, where he played lead trumpet and toured the world for the next seven years. In 1989, Miyashiro relocated to Japan and delved into every aspect of the jazz scene, composing, studio recording, arranging, production, and teaching. He formed his own big band, the EM Band, in 1995 and in 2013, became the music director of the Blue Note Tokyo All Star Jazz Orchestra.
Hailing from Osaka, Japan, Nao Yoshioka is an evolving soul singer who honed her talents at a young age within a creative household. She found inspiration in soul legends like Stevie Wonder and Aretha Franklin, which eventually contributed to her distinctive style. Over the years, she has cultivated a loyal following in Japan and around the world, drawing fans due to her soulful voice, charismatic performance and honest, introspective lyrics that tackle both the pain and beauty of being human. In 2012, her single Make the Change garnered critical acclaim for its heartfelt performances, and in 2013 her album The Truth’ was praised as “impeccable neo soul’ by Rolling Stones Magazine.
While celebrating the 10th anniversary of her debut in 2022, Nao continued to expand her global activities from her base in Tokyo, with performances in the Netherlands and the UK, followed by a guest appearance at the newly-opened Blue Note Place in Tokyo. The summer of 2023 saw Nao performing at her first Java Jazz Festival in Jakarta. Europe welcomed her back for shows at Paris’ New Morning as well as a sold-out show at London’s Jazz Café and the modern TivoliVredenburg Club9 in the Netherlands. Nao’s live-streamed performance for Tokyo Funk Sessions 2022 at Blue Note Tokyo has also surpassed three million views on YouTube, and her social following continues to grow every day.
Pianist, organist and composer Chok Kerong has established himself as one of Singapore’s most versatile talents. His arrangements and compositions have been performed by luminaries like Jeremy Monteiro, Rani Singam, the T’ang Quartet, the Singapore Wind Symphony, The Jazz Association of Singapore Youth Jazz Orchestra, and his own chamber ensemble, ELEVEN. Disquiet, commissioned by Singapore Symphony Group for the Victoria Concert Hall Organ Series, is Chok's first work featuring the pipe organ, and was performed by eminent organist Dr Margaret Chen with a string ensemble in August 2017.
Chok also works outside the straight-ahead jazz scene, most notably as the organist and keyboardist for eminent singer-songwriter Charlie Lim, where his many stylistic influences coalesce with his foundational sensibility as a pop musician. On Lim’s critically acclaimed double EP Time/Space, he can be heard channeling the spirit of the ragtime and stride masters on Blah Blah Blues, adding shades of gospel on Bitter, and providing emotional depth through his arrangement for strings on the poignant Light Breaks In. In February 2023, Kerong collaborated with Australia-based singer Vanessa Fernandez, releasing the soulful and eclectic nine-track record, Spiral.
21 Oct 2023, Sat
Students, NSFs & Seniors
Early Bird (23 Aug – 29 Aug 2023)
Black: 20% savings
White: 15% savings
Discover: 15% savings (Min. of 2 tickets)
From 30 Aug 2023
Black: 15% savings
White: 10% savings
Discover: 10% savings (Min. of 2 tickets)
Applicable to Standard Cat 1 & Cat 2 tickets only. Terms and Conditions apply.
Esplanade&Me Black card members are invited to enjoy a free foyer bar drink on us (worth $15).
Choice of drinks include Cocktails, Red/White wines, and Non-alcoholic drinks.
Please email us at email@example.com with your name and contact number to request for a free drink. You must be an Esplanade&Me Black tier member and a ticket holder to Mosaic Blue Note Tokyo All-Star Jazz Orchestra. Each member can redeem only one free drink.
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