Category Archives: Japanese Musician

Eiji Kitamura(4)

March 09.2017

Photo above of Eiji Kitamura and Buddy DeFranco by 北村英治 Official website(from Eiji Kitamura Gallery)

Buddy DeFrancoからの言葉を週刊朝日(2016年5月20日号)から引用致しました。Go here


Eiji kitamura became one of Japan’s most internationally-recognised musical figures.

He is still an active performer touring Japan with his band and frequently appearing abroad.

Finally I want to summarize the speaking of Buddy DeFranco with Eiji Kitamura.

When Buddy came to Japan as leader of Glenn Miller Orchestra,

Eiji Kitamura visited a dressing room in Buddy and played clarinet in front of Buddy.

In those days he always listened to the record of Buddy DeFranco.

Proudly he played like Buddy Defranco’s records.

Then Buddy said:

“You took a good playing. Are you an amateur or a professional? “

Eiji answered “I am professional musician”.

Consequently he got angry at once.

“It is embarrassing for professional musician to imitate me.

You should have your own distinctive.

Unless you have your own style, you are not a professional musician.

Do not imitate my performance.

You should play with your own style.”

So he ceased to play bebop jazz and returned to swing jazz style.

Here is Buddy DeFranco plays “Yesterdays”.
with Les Brown and his Band of Renown “Aurex Jazz Festival”.

Here is Eiji Kitamura plays “The World Is Waiting For The Sunrise”.

Here is Eiji Kitamura plays “Memories of You”.

Here is Eiji Kitamura plays .

Eiji Kitamura(3)

March 08.2017

Photo above of Eiji Kitamura and Woody Herman by 北村英治 Official website(Eiji Kitamura Gallery)

下記は週刊朝日 2016年5月20日号から引用しました。



In 1991 – 2000,He and Bill Berry jointly planned International Jazz party.

His performance gained a high rating by Leonard Feather.

“The man saved the stagnation of the jazz clarinet.”

Photo above of Leonard Feather

Also Leonard Feather wrote “JAZZ REVIEW” in 1993.

“Kitamura has been hailed as the man who saved Japan from allowing the clarinet to sink into oblivion there. Winner of countless polls on home turf, he has graduated from a Benny Goodman influence to become his country’s counterpart of Buddy De Franco.”

Then the Concord Jazz label signed him up for a few recordings as its first Japanese artist.

Here is The Woody Herman Orchestra With Eiji Kitamura, Cal Tjader and others play “The Woodchopper’s Ball”.

Here is Eiji Kitamura plays “Someday Sweethart”.

Here is Eiji Kitamura plays “Liebesfreud by Fritz Kreisler”.(愛の喜び クライスラー)

Eiji Kitamura(2)

March 07.2017

Photo above of Eiji Kitamura from Official website

Eiji Kitamura devoted himself to clarinet playing while still an undergraduate at Keio University in Tokyo.

He decided to become a professional musician in 1951.

Then he had been named ”Swing Journal Poll Winners” each and every year since 1959.

He had making many recordings and concerts throughout the 1960s/70s.

Also he had played with a legend musicians like Buddy DeFranco and Teddy Wilson.

In 1977 he was invited to the Montreux Jazz Festival.

Fortunately his performance got great praise.

So he appeared in 18 consecutive times and 1996 until 1994.

He was invited numerous times in major jazz festivals such as America, Europe and Australia.

Photo above courtesy by Pinterst

Here is Eiji Kitamura with Teddy Wilson, Cal Tjader play “Avalon”.

Here is Scott Hamilton with Eiji Kitamura play “Lover, Come Back To Me”.

Eiji Kitamura(1)

March 06.2017


Photo above of Eiji Kitamura from Official website.

I’ve posted about a superb clarinetist in the recent two weeks.

I will post about Eiji Kitamura who is a clarinet player comparable to Richard Stoltzman and Paquito D’Rivera this week.

Eiji Kitamura (北村 英治) was born April 8, 1929 in Tokyo.


Photo above by Wikipedia

Today (March 6th) he is playing on Nippon Maru(にっぽん丸).


「春の味覚クルーズ ~阿波・串本〜」

Next month, the memorial concert will be held for celebrating his 88th birthday in Osaka.


Photo above from Official website

Here is Eiji Kitamura(北村英治) with Tadao Kitano(北野タダオ) & Arrow Jazz Orchestra play “Memories of you”.

Richard Stoltzman and Mika Yoshida(5)

February 25.2017


Mika Yoshida has been performing actively with the duo “The Stotlzmans on Clarinet and Marimba” with Richard Stoltzman.

They have been performing globally in New York, Boston, Austin, Buenos Aires, Beijing, Hong Kong, and Japan.

Last year, they recorded a duo album with producer Stephen Epstein, and a performance DVD.

Producer Steven Epstein won a 17-time Grammy award.

Also they are launching  “Kickstarter Campaign” for producing new Marimba and Clarinet DUO album. Go here

Here is Mika Stoltzman talks  ”Marimba Journey” (日本語字幕).

Here is Richard Stoltzman plays “Bach Goldberg Variations”.

Richard Stoltzman and Mika Yoshida(4)

February 24.2017


Mika Stoltzman was born in 1964 ,in Amakusa Island, Kumamoto, Japan.

At the age of 27 she woke up as musician by meeting with the world famous percussionist Stomp Yamash’ta(ツトム・ヤマシタ) .


When she was  30 year old she went abroad for study in New York.

So she met the global percussion ensemble group “NEXUS”.


Photo by

Mika has devoted herself to marimba performance and musical studies under the strong influence of the “NEXUS.”

She is also studying Jazz privately with jazz vibe master, Mike Mainieri, in New York.


Photo above of Mike Mainieri

Her first recording “Mikarimba” (2010) was produced by drummer Steve Gadd and features bassist Eddie Gomez.

In August, 2011, She held recitals at Blue Note Jazz clubs throughout Japan with her group, MIKARIMBA.

In 2012, she performed with Richard Stoltzman, Steve Gadd, Eddie Gomez and Mike Mainieri (vibraphone).

Mika and MIKARIMBA  made her second album, “If You Believe,”.

She assembled the members for her recording,Richard Stoltzman, Steve Gadd, Eddie Gomez, John Tropea (guitar), Duke Gadd, and the Harlem String Quartet.


Photo above of Mika and Richard Stoltzman and Yousui Inoue(井上陽水)://

Here is MIKA Marimba play “Jubilation”.

Here is MIKA Marimba play “Take The A Train”.

Here is Mikarimba Japan Tour 2014 play “Marika Groove”.

Richard Stoltzman and Mika Yoshida(1)

February 21.2017


Last week I joined Osaka jazz club (大阪ジャズ同好会) in Osaka.

Mr.Hori introduced some rare clarinetists at his program.

I heard a superb clarinet player Richard Stoltzman.


After returning my home I looked into his background.

Richard Stoltzman is among the world’s leading clarinetists.

Also he is known for his wide classical repertory and for an interest in world, jazz, and popular music.

In private life he married a Japanese musician.

Her name is Mika Yoshida who is playing Marimba.

This week I want to post about Richard Stoltzman and Mika Yoshida.

Here is Richard Stoltzman plays “Amazing grace”.

Here is Judy Collins & Richard Stoltzman play “Deep Peace”.

Here is  Mika and Richard Stoltzman plays Bill Douglas’s Irish Spirit for Clarinet and Marimba