Yukiko Matsuyama’s best selling release, Crème Brulée, is a joyful blend of Smooth Jazz and World Music that will excite & delight! It's a delicious feast which blends the Japanese flavors of the Koto with westerm instruments and rhythms from around the world.
The Koto Yuki Band beautifully executes 10 original compositions by Matsuyama. Greg Vail’s soulful sax blends joyously with Yukiko’s Koto.
Note: this is not your traditional “relaxation / meditation” Koto CD. You’ll find yourself taking this one with you in the car, on bike rides, and wherever you want to feel the positive vibrations of happy music.
The band features Diana Dentino – piano & keyboards, Greg Vail – sax & flute, Vince VanTrigt – bass, Mike Bennett – drums & percussion, with help from Daniel Mulliken – cello, David Brock – violin & viola, Chris Darrow – guitar, Dave Wood – guitar, & Michael Kotzen – cajon.
International recording artist Yukiko Matsuyama bridges eras and cultures. Her compositions for koto and western instruments delve into a joyous and celebrative blend of world and pop music. She delivers the sounds of the ancient 7th century instrument with authority and grace while managing to infuse elements of jazz, pop, new age, and world music into her mesmerizing compositions.
Born in Osaka Japan Matsuyama was classically trained at the Ikuta School of Koto from age 9. She received her professional certification and teaching credential in 1986.
In 1993 Matsuyama moved to Los Angeles and began composing original music, blending the traditional sound of the koto with western music.
Her best selling CD, Crème Brulée, is a delicious feast which blends the Japanese flavors of the Koto with rhythms from around the world and features Greg Vail’s soulful saxophone.
She recorded in Japan with the Paul Winter Consort and is featured on Paul Winter’s latest CD; Miho – Journey to the Mountain (Grammy Winner – Best New Age Album, 2011).
Matsuyama performed at the Latin Grammys in November 2011. For the event, she performed with Shakira on Antes De Las Seis, her latest single from the album, Sale El Sol, for which Shakira won the Latin Grammy for Best Female Pop Album.
Beyond the Space, a collaboration with Hirotaka Ogawa will be released exclusively in Japan this October with concerts in Osaka and Tokyo.
Other notable musicians with whom Ms. Matsuyama has performed include Munyungo Jackson, John York, Rei Aoo Dance Planet, Tadashi Namba, James Gadson, Diana Dentino, Koji Nakamura, Austin Peralta, Hiroyuki Hayashida, Reed Gratz, Tom Kurai and Mike Bennett.
Venues include Japan America Theatre, John Anson Ford Theatre, Grand Canyon National Park, LACMA, Huntington Library, Bowers Museum, St John Cathedral NY, Gwinnett Center Atlanta, as well as festivals and cultural events throughout the United States and Japan.
Recent film work includes From the Shadows, directed by Matt Antell, soundtrack composed by Stephen Gutheinz, Turning Japanese by Paul Bickel, and a music video with jazz pianist Billy Mitchell.
A 13-string zither or harp, the Koto is Japan’s national instrument.
Beyond the Space (2011 Japan) - Yukiko Matsuyama & Hirotaka Ogawa
Return to the River (2011) - Madi Sato
Miho: Journey to the Mountain (2010) - The Paul Winter Consort (Grammy Winner – Best New Age Album)
Crème Brulée (2010) - Yukiko Matsuyama & Koto Yuki Band
Tsubomi (2003) - Yukiko Matsuyama & Koto Yuki Band
Koto (2003) - Yukiko Matsuyama & John York (of the Byrds)
Kazaguruma (1999) - Yukiko Matsuyama & Koto Yuki Band
More info at: www.YukikoMatsuyama.com
Greg Vail - An extraordinary contemporary jazz musician, Greg has toured & recorded with some of the hottest names in jazz & pop including Natalie Cole, Michael McDonald, Al Jarreau, Rick Braun, Peter White, Josh Groban, Smokey Robinson, Earth Wind & Fire & Greg Adams.
Diana Dentino – Arranger for Crème Brulée CD has performed live and/or recorded with a variety of artists including Peabo Bryson, Kitaro, James Ingram, Jeffrey Osborne, George Duke, Oleta Adams, Sheena Easton, John Secada, Jody Watley, Regina Belle, Deniece Williams, Jennifer Paige, Kilauea, and Jon Anderson.
Mike Bennett – A student of world rhythms, Mike is equally adept at drums & hand percussion. World tours include diverse artists Benise (World Music), Richie Kotzen (Rock), Hillary Duff (Pop), and Gordon Goodwin's Big Phat Band (Jazz).