Wednesday October 18 | 8:00 pm
2017 Chicago Asian American Jazz Festival (CAAJF)$10This critically acclaimed annual event is an essential bulwark for highlighting and documenting the significant role that Asian Americans and their collaborators have in contributing to Chicago's historic and vibrant musical landscape. Curated by Asian Improv aRts Midwest, the 22nd anniversary of the Chicago Asian American Jazz Festival (CAAJF) features the finest in contemporary Asian American music. Natsuko Furukawa & Yutaka Umitsuki add to the CAAJF Festival with their New Orleans style Jazz at the Elastic Arts center.
New Album “City Of New Orleans” Release show, Chicago
Natsuko Furukawa (piano & vocal) and Yutaka Umitsuki (saxophone) – who are active in the front line in the New Orleans Jazz / Swing dance scenes in Japan and other countries- will be coming to Chicago on their way to New Orleans to introduce their newest album: “City Of New Orleans”.
Natsuko Furukawa is one of the top jazz piano/vocalists in Japan. She started to play piano at the age of 5,and began playing jazz while attending Waseda University. She has gone on tour to New Orleans every year since 1987 to refine her “jazz entertainment skills”.
Her playing style is based on the New Orleans style, and is a mixture of traditional jazz, ragtime, boogie, and gospel. She values a feeling of swing driven by dance and steps and has played with the top Jazz musicians in New Orleans such as, the Rebirth Brass Band, the Original Tuxedo Jazz Band, Leroy Jones(tp) , Kermit Ruffins (tp) Michael White(cl) John Boutte(vo), Topsy Chapman, and Solid Harmony(vo).
Yutaka Umitsuki is multi lead player, a master of tenor/Alto/Soprano saxophone and clarinet. He started to play saxophone in high school and refined his skills at performances in several live houses.
He joined a lot of jazz units, including one of the top big bands in Japan, “T.Miyama & his Newherd”. He was also invited to play for Japanese Rock Star, Eikichi Yazawa’s 40th years anniversary live.
In Japan, he delivers New Orleans and Swing sounds with his jazz band called “Soul Food Café”, and has appeared in the Shinjuku Traditional Jazz Festival, (one of the biggest traditional jazz festivals in Japan), every year since 2003.