Street Jazz From Kano, Saito, Kawamoto

I’ve seen this good, energetic ”Street Jazz” trio at JR Shinjuku before, but today I waited for a good moment and got some materials from them. Read on if you like good jazz.

Street TunisiaThe musicians were George Kano on drums, Chikara Saito on Alto Sax, and (probably) Sousuke Kawamoto on upright bass. The flyers I got were pretty clear on who the sax and drum players were, but I’m not so sure about the bass player. Either way, they are all really good musicians.

As a drummer myself, I was really impressed with George. He’s got a lightweight kit that he can probably pack in one or two relatively small bags, with roto-toms, the sound of which of course reminds me of the Bridgemen and of Bill Bruford.

iPhone Recordings

They were jamming along, so I whipped out the iPhone and snagged a couple of recordings which I hope you enjoy. The top one’s Dizzy Gillespie’s A Night in Tunisia and I’m afraid I cannot remember the second one. I’ve heard it before, and at first it sounded a bit like Hancock’s Watermelon Man but I think it’s not. (If you know, let me know!)

Websites

Their flyers had a whole bunch of websites on them, which are all in Japanese. From looking at the sites, it appears these cats play in various combinations. At any rate, here’s a few useful links for them in Japanese:

Mixi Community ”STREET Jazz[1]

Drummer Kano George’s Personal Site and iDep Site

Alto Sax Player Chikara Saito’s ElectricRicky Site

Bassist Sousuke Kawamoto’s Personal Site and Alabama Crossover Site

Recommendations

Guys if you’ll indulge me for a moment, it takes skill to play as fast and furious as you do, but it also takes huge skill to play slow. Dig “When We Were Free” from Pat Metheny’s Day Trip. The musicians can and do stretch in this tune but the basic tempo is really easy-going.

Also, please ditch the long, complicated URLs on your flyers. Sorry, but this sort of URL is absurd to make someone enter:

http://ip.tosp.co.jp/i.asp?i=kanogeorge

… because it’s too complex. You want to let your potential listeners enter something really simple. Use an URL shortener like TinyURL or Bitly to create permanent, short URLs. I created two from George’s site:

http://tinyurl.com/kanogeorge

http://bit.ly/kanogeorge

Please consider using those, and keep up the great playing!

Drummer George Kano

[1] Mixi is a Japanese SNS.