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Kazunori Sugiyama

(b Tokyo, Nov 3, 1939). Japanese pianist and leader. He began piano lessons at the age of seven and later studied composition at Tokyo University of Fine Arts and Music. In 1963 he joined George Kawaguchi’s Big Four. Later he played in Shungo Sawada’s quintet and with the tenor saxophonist Takatoshi Oya, then in 1976 he formed his own trio and big band. From 1978 Shibuya was active as an accompanist to and arranger for singers, among them the jazzy pop singer Maki Asakawa.

Article

Kazunori Sugiyama

(b Tokyo, Sept 23, 1964). Japanese pianist and leader. He took piano lessons from the age of three, and later, while studying composition in Tokyo at the Kunitachi College of Music (from 1982), he played jazz piano professionally. In 1989 he toured Japan as a member of Lionel Hampton’s orchestra and Vincent Herring’s quartet, and in 1990 he was a member, with Masahiko Osaka, of Roy Hargrove’s quartet. This led to the formation the following year of the acclaimed quintet Jazz Networks (with the addition of Antonio Hart); from 1992 Shiina served as a leader of the group. He led his own trio from 1994, which consisted of Osaka and Reginald Veal for his first album as a leader and an ensuing tour of Japan. His next two recordings (1995, 1996) were with Veal and Herlin Riley as sidemen (Nicholas Payton was guest soloist on the latter), and the following album (...

Article

Yozo Iwanami

revised by Kazunori Sugiyama

(b Kobe, Japan, Feb 27, 1928). Japanese drummer. He attended Kansei Gakuin University in Osaka until shortly after World War II. Having learned to play drums at American military bases in 1945 he began working professionally as a drummer and moved to Tokyo in 1946. There he played with the Red Hot Boys, the Gramercy Five, and the CB Nine, one of the first bop groups in Japan, and during the early 1950s he joined Toshiko Akiyoshi’s Cozy Quartet and Shotaro Moriyasu’s group. After a period of relative inactivity in the 1960s he led trios and quartets in the 1970s and performed with trios led by the pianist Yuzuru Sera and Norio Maeda, as well as with other groups. Shimizu is highly regarded in Japan for his sensitive, energetic, and melodic style of playing.

Article

Peter Darke

(b Rangoon, Burma, 1918). British clarinetist. While at college in Burma in the late 1930s he organized a cooperative group, the Jive Boys. After the Japanese invaded Burma in 1942 he was evacuated to India and played as a freelance before joining Teddy Weatherford at the Grand Hotel, Calcutta; among the recordings he made with a small group from the band is One Dozen Roses (1942, Col. FB40231). Solomon left Weatherford at the end of 1944 and formed a new Jive Boys group, which recorded extensively, then after Weatherford’s death (1945) he took some of the former’s members and augmented his own group to 14 pieces. He also wrote arrangements for this new band. He emigrated to Australia after World War II and worked initially as a musician in Sydney.

K. P. Darke: “Teddy Weatherford’s Indian Recording Sessions 1941–45,” Matrix, nos.107–8 (1975), 3 P. Darke...

Article

Otto Flückiger

[Max ]

(b Basel, Switzerland, March 2, 1914; d Colombo, Sri Lanka, March 12, 1980). Swiss clarinetist and saxophonist. Educated in architecture, he played harmonium, violin, and guitar before taking up clarinet and saxophone. Having first performed locally in amateur bands, he left Basel to take a professional engagement in Surabay, Java, but he returned in 1938 and the following year worked with Fred Böhler. He was drafted into the Swiss Army at the outbreak of the war and established a musical cabaret for soldiers. Following his discharge he formed a group which gradually grew into a big band (from 1944), with his wife, Molly McCormick, as its singer; from 1947 he reduced this to a smaller group which toured Switzerland, the Netherlands, and elsewhere. Later, in Berne, Strittmatter opened a music shop and manufactured amplifiers. In the late 1970s he moved to Colombo, Sri Lanka, where he performed in clubs. He specialized in playing “dirty” (i.e., with a gruff, vocalized timbre), and he may be heard to advantage on two tracks as a leader, ...

Article

(b Madras, India, July 23, 1947). Indian violinist and leader. In his youth he learned violin and performed in classical concerts. After a period reading medicine he traveled to the USA to study Western music as a graduate at the California Institute for the Arts (MFA). In 1973–4 he toured the USA and Europe with the rock guitarist George Harrison and the sitar player Ravi Shankar, performing a fusion of Indian music and rock, and in 1978 he composed for and recorded with Stu Goldberg and made a series of duo recordings with Larry Coryell and his first album as a leader. Later he recorded as a member of the group Rainbow with John Handy and the sarod player Ali Akbar Khan (the album Fantasy without Limit, 1979, Trend 524), as the leader of a quartet consisting of Coryell, George Duke, and Tom Scott (c1982), and as a leader with Stephane Grappelli (the album ...

Article

Kazunori Sugiyama

[Colgen ]

(b Tokyo, May 26, 1940; d Tokyo, May 21, 2001). Japanese pianist, arranger, and leader. He took piano lessons from the age of 11, began to play jazz while attending Keio University, Tokyo, and made his début with George Kawaguchi’s Big Four. After playing with the Bluecoats, led by Shigenori Obara, and the quartet led by the drummer Akira Ishikawa he joined Terumasa Hino’s quintet in 1968, following the departure of Masabumi Kikuchi; thereafter he contributed greatly to the group’s success. From 1979 to 1986 he led a quintet, The Players, though he also led a trio and was active as a studio musician. Suzuki taught piano and arranging in Tokyo at Ann School of Music.

Article

Kazunori Sugiyama and Barry Kernfeld

[Hisao; Oma]

(b Tokyo, Jan 2, 1946). Japanese double bass player and leader. He first played double bass at American military bases. Later he recorded with the pianist Shotaro Mariyasu (1954), played with Hidehiko Matsumoto (1961–4) and Sadao Watanabe (1964–5), and led a bop group in Tokyo (1965–9); he also recorded with Hampton Hawes (1968). In New York he worked with Art Blakey (1969–70) and performed with Thelonious Monk, Ella Fitzgerald, Wynton Kelly, Ron Carter, Charles Mingus, Paul Desmond, Bobby Timmons, and Jim Hall, usually in duos. In 1971 he returned to Japan, where he appeared as a sideman with Kenny Burrell’s quartet and Mal Waldron’s trio, among others, and worked again as the leader of various groups, including Soul Family, which in 1975 included Kazumasa Akiyama. He doubled on cello on a number of his albums recorded between ...

Article

Kazunori Sugiyama and Barry Kernfeld

(b Yokohama, Japan, Aug 16, 1932; d Tokyo, Sept 10, 1995). Japanese clarinetist and leader. His father played violin in orchestras accompanying silent films, and all three of his brothers became professional musicians. He grew up in Zushi from 1945 (after Yokohama was bombed) and began practicing on his elder brother’s clarinet; he turned professional at the age of 16. After playing successively with four bands, including Fumio Nanri’s Hot Peppers, in 1952 he formed a quintet, the Rhythm Aces, modeled after Benny Goodman’s classic small groups; in tribute to Goodman’s forthcoming appearance in Japan in January 1957 he made several recordings in this style. Later in 1957 he had considerable success with a Hawaiian-style pop recording, Suzukake no michi (Sycamore road), on which Peanuts Hucko played. His swing quintet recorded in New York with Hucko as guest soloist in 1962, and in spring 1966 Suzuki spent a month deputizing for Hucko at Eddie Condon’s club. He continued to lead the Rhythm Aces in Japan into the mid-1990s, making further recordings with this group, and also performed with Hucko, Helen Merrill, and others in a concert tour of Japan in ...

Article

Yozo Iwanami

revised by Kazunori Sugiyama

[Chin ]

(b Nagano, Japan, March 21, 1946). Japanese double bass player and pianist. He learned piano and violin from an early age, took up guitar in his teens, and played piano in a band at Waseda University in Tokyo. At the suggestion of Sadao Watanabe he changed to double bass, then performed with Watanabe’s quartet from 1969 and with Masabumi Kikuchi’s sextet from 1971. After moving to New York (1973) he worked with Stan Getz (1974), Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers (1974–6), and the quintet of Bill Hardman and Junior Cook (1977–82); he also played with Dave Liebman, Sonny Rollins, Chet Baker, Lee Konitz, and Sonny Stitt, among others, and studied at the Juilliard School. Suzuki returned to Tokyo in 1984 and led the groups Matsuri (1984–92) and East Bounce (from 1992).

Article

Kazunori Sugiyama

(b Takamatsu, Japan, May 10, 1960). Japanese alto saxophonist and leader. He took piano lessons from the age of seven and played flute and conducted brass bands through his years in high school. At Okayama University, when he was 20, he taught himself to play alto saxophone. He worked as a banker after graduation and performed as an amateur for five years in Takamatsu, then moved in 1988 to Tokyo to start a professional career. There he performed with the Bop Band, led by the trumpeter Hiroshi Murata (1990–93), Tomonao Hara, Masahiko Osaka, Junko Onishi’s Jazz Workshop (1996–7), Motohiko Hino’s group Art Directions (1997–9), and the big bands of the trombonist Kenichi Tsunoda and Yoshihiko Katori. While serving, with his fellow alto saxophonist Joh Yamada, as co-leader of the group Alto Nakayoshi Koyoshi (from 1993), he established his own quartet (...

Article

Yozo Iwanami

revised by Kazunori Sugiyama

(b Yamagata, Japan, Dec 24, 1931; d Tokyo, February 29, 2008). Japanese bandleader and tenor saxophonist. He played professionally from 1951 and worked at American military bases near Sendai before moving to Tokyo in the late 1950s; his early style was influenced by that of Hidehiko Matsumoto. In 1961 he joined the alto saxophonist Keiichiro Ebihara and his Lobsters, and from 1966 he led Tokyo Union, a big band that made an acclaimed recording, Scandinavian Suite, in 1977; he also appeared at the festivals in Monterey (California) and Montreux (Switzerland). Tokyo Union disbanded in 1989. From 1992 Takahashi directed student and amateur big bands, and in 1996 he formed the group Jazz Groovys. His saxophone playing owed much to the work of Sonny Rollins, and the style of his band was strongly rhythmic. He had commissioned arrangements by, among others, Slide Hampton, Chikara Ueda, and Toshiyuki Honda.

Article

Kazunori Sugiyama and Gary W. Kennedy

(b Osaka, Jan 26, 1948). Japanese pianist and leader. Her mother, a piano teacher, began to give her lessons at the age of three, and she studied classical piano through her years at Tohogakuen Music University, from which she graduated in 1972; she also played double bass while in high school. She began her professional career in 1971 in the group led by the alto saxophonist Yoshio Otomo and then performed in bands led by Yoshio Ikeda, Motohiko Hino, the alto and soprano saxophonist Hidefumi Toki, and Joe Henderson. Her first recording was made in 1978, and her second, in December 1980, was as the leader of a quartet including Dave Liebman. In 1982 she performed in New York with Cecil McBee, Bob Moses, and Sheila Jordan. Having visited Europe regularly from 1981 (she appeared with her trio at the Berlin Jazz Festival that year, performed as an unaccompanied soloist in Nuremberg in ...

Article

Kazunori Sugiyama

[JoJo ]

(b Tokyo, Dec 22, 1932; d Tokyo, June 23, 1991). Japanese guitarist. He taught himself to play guitar during his high school years and made his professional début in 1951. In 1954, while performing with Toshiko Akiyoshi, Sadao Watanabe, and Hampton Hawes, he formed his own quartet, New Direction. From 1959 through 1965 he took a leading role in various experimental activities under the banner of Shinseiki Ongaku Kenkyusyo (New Century Music Laboratory, a forum for avant-garde musicians), and in 1961 he formed the cooperative quartet Jazz Academy with Masahiko Togashi, Masabumi Kikuchi, and another of the laboratory’s central figures, Hideto Kanai. Takayanagi formed a bossa nova band in 1967. Later in his career he founded a tango group (1989) – he performed fluently in more traditional jazz styles as well – but he mainly led bands oriented towards free jazz, including the groups Jazz Contemporary and Tee & Company. In ...

Article

Kazunori Sugiyama

(b Tokyo, April 18, 1955). Japanese tenor saxophonist and leader. He started piano lessons at the age of three but taught himself to play tenor saxophone when he was 17; later he doubled on flute and bass clarinet. After joining Elvin Jones’s Japanese Jazz Machine (1990) he became a member of Issei Igarashi’s group (1991), Shota Koyama’s group Ichigo Ichie (1996), the band led by the Hammond organ player Toshihiko Kankawa (1998), and the saxophone quartet Saxophobia (1998). His own quartet consisted of Yutaka Shiina, Shigeo Aramaki, and Dairiki Hara from 1995, but in 1998–9 he toured and recorded with an American rhythm section of Rod Williams, Jaribu Shahid, and the drummer Eli Fountain. Takeuchi is a powerful free-jazz tenor saxophonist.

Article

Gary W. Kennedy

(b Ankara, Feb 11, 1939). Turkish drummer, percussionist, and leader. Through his mother, who played ’ūd and jumbush and performed Turkish classical music, he was introduced to traditional folk musics from Turkey, Macedonia, and the Middle East. He took up trumpet, trombone, and double bass before studying percussion at the conservatory in Ankara in the mid-1950s, and in 1955 he was inspired to play jazz after hearing Charli Persip perform with Dizzy Gillespie’s band. Around this time he began working professionally as a drummer in dance bands, with which he toured Germany, Denmark, and Sweden, and met and played with, among others, Maffy Falay, Don Cherry, Johnny Dyani, and Dollar Brand. In Sweden he worked alongside Dyani in Cherry’s trio (from 1969, recording in 1969, 1971) and was a member of Falay’s group Sevda (through summer 1972); he then joined Dyani and Mongezi Feza in Music for Xaba and toured with the group Rena Rama. From around ...

Article

Kazunori Sugiyama

(b Fujisawa, Japan, May 1, 1967). Japanese violinist and leader. She took violin lessons from the age of four and was inspired to become a jazz musician after hearing a recording by Bill Evans (ii), Waltz for Debby. In 1986 she began working professionally, performing and recording with Shigeharu Mukai, Mal Waldron, and others. In ...

Article

Rainer E. Lotz

(b ?Turkey, 1902; d Vienna, Oct 23, 1976). Armenian guitarist. He fled Turkey in 1921 on account of the persecution of the Armenian people and settled in Berlin, where by the 1930s he was highly sought after for concert, dance, and studio work. Among the bandleaders with whom he played and recorded were Michael Jary (1939–40), Willy Berking (1939–42), Kutte Widmann (1940–41), Horst Winter and Helmuth Zacharias (both 1941–2), Benny de Weille (1941–3), and Primo Angeli and Willy Stech (both 1942–3). His most significant recordings were made as a leader in 1941 with personnel from the bands of Ernst van ’t Hoff and Jean Omer, and include his own arrangement of Lieselott (Pallas 1205). Tevelian moved to Vienna in 1943 and later left music to work for an oil company. (K. Schulz: “Sehen Sie, ich lebe weiter: die Meg Tevelian-Story,” ...

Article

Yozo Iwanami

revised by Kazunori Sugiyama

(b Tokyo, March 22, 1940; d Kanagawa, Japan, August 22, 2007). Japanese drummer, percussionist, composer, and leader. His father played double bass. He learned violin from the age of six, took up drums and made his début as a drummer with his father’s swing band when he was 14, and then moved into other jazz styles. After playing bop with Sadao Watanabe and his Cozy Quartet (1956) and working with Toshiko Akiyoshi and Tony Scott (1950s) he formed the group Jazz Academy (1961), with Hideto Kanai, Masabumi Kikuchi, and Masayuki Takayanagi. He was active as a leader from 1965, when Yosuke Yamashita appeared as his sideman in what is considered to be the first Japanese free-jazz group, and he accompanied such visitors to Japan as Sonny Rollins, Ornette Coleman, Lee Morgan, and Blue Mitchell. An accident in 1969 left him unable to play drums, and the following year he played percussion exclusively; he also wrote compositions that show a strong oriental influence. Togashi resumed performing as a drummer in the mid-1970s and toured and recorded with Don Cherry and Charlie Haden in Europe in ...

Article

Gary W. Kennedy

(b Philadelphia, Oct 3, 1956). Pianist. Her father was African American and her mother Japanese American, and she later took her mother’s maiden name as a stage name. She left high school at the age of 15 and moved to Boston, where she had lessons with Margaret Chaloff and Charlie Banacos. In 1973 she lived in Connecticut and then Detroit, where she studied and performed with Marcus Belgrave. Having returned to Philadelphia (1974) she studied at the Philadelphia College of Performing Arts and received private tuition from Bernard Peiffer, Mary Lou Williams, Stanley Cowell, and Dennis Sandole; she performed in local clubs and worked with various musicians, including Odean Pope and Philly Joe Jones. In 1983 she moved to New York and attended the New School for Social Research and performed as an unaccompanied soloist at a SoHo supper club in Green Street. She made her first recording as a leader in ...