November 11, 2018

Kaoru Azuma (vo), Hitomi Nishiyama (pf), Motohiko Ichino (gt), Toru Nishijima (bs), Ryosuke Hashizume (ts) played FJ's in Tokyo on Nov 2, 2018

After a four-year break, they reunited for a show to unveil how advanced they each have got.

Although the vocalist and the pianist often meet up for a duo, Kaoru Azuma (voice), Hitomi Nishiyama (piano), Motohiko Ichino (electric guitar), Toru Nishijima (double bass) and Ryosuke Hashizume (tenor saxophone) performed together for the first time since they played a release gig for their debut album "TRAVELS" that was launched in 2013.


- Kaoru Azuma (voice)

- Hitomi Nishiyama (piano)

- Motohiko Ichino (electric guitar)

- Toru Nishijima (double bass)

- Ryosuke Hashizume (tenor saxophone)

at Cafe & Live spot FJ's in Tokyo, Japan on Friday, November 2nd, 2018

Set list for the show
* 1st Stage
1. Face Of Yesterday
2. White Cloud Mountain Minnow
3. Just By Thinking Of You
4. Pescadores
5. Pierre Without A Face
* 2nd Stage
1. Face Of Yesterday
2. On Travel
3. Manouche
4. T.C.T.S.
5. Baroque
* Encore
Remember Me

S1M1, S2M1, S2M3: vo, pf, gt, bs
S1M2, S1M5, S2M4, S2M5, En.: vo, pf, gt, bs, ts
S1M3: vo, bs, ts
S1M4: vo, pf, gt
S2M2: vo, pf, bs, ts

Nishiyama composed all the songs except "Remember Me".

Azuma wrote the lyrics to "Face Of Yesterday", "White Cloud Mountain Minnow", "Just By Thinking Of You", "Pescadores", "Pierre Without A Face", "On Travel" and "J".

"Manouche", "T.C.T.S." and "Baroque" are scat.

All the songs they played that night except the encore were composed by Nishiyama. The pieces included in "Travels" are "Just By Thinking Of You", "On Travel" and "Baroque".

One of the most popular tunes "Just By Thinking Of You" with fans of Azuma and Nishiyama was played without the pianist. At the critical moment, the vocalist demonstrated her true worth by singing it accompanied on the monophonic instruments: bass and saxophone.

You also can hear the song in "Music In You", the CD and vinyl released by Nishiyama's piano trio, as well as in "Star In Green", the album produced by Azuma and guitarist Jesse Forest.

The album "TRAVELS" was released in December 2013.

The renditions that have not been commercially available anywhere yet are "Pierre Without A Face", "J" and "Manouche".

Azuma made an impassioned speech on how seriously she wrote the lyrics of "Pierre Without A Face".

The scat "Manouche" is so complicated that Nishiyama gave Azuma all the instrumental recordings in advance so that the singer would get ready for the performance. Azuma raised a whoop of joy after she completed the mission.

The instrumentalists are amazing enough to let the vocalist sing so gracefully that it sounded like she was swimming among them.

"Even when I play a duo with Nishiyama, I can hear every sound on each instrument here." - Kaoru Azuma

[left to right] Toru Nishijima (bs), Hitomi Nishiyama (pf), Kaoru Azuma (vo), Ryosuke Hashizume (ts) and Motohiko Ichino (gt)

The audience believed that it was not a bad thing to have been waiting patiently for their second album.

Isamu Nozaki at Jazz Up Japan

posted by Jazz Up Japan at 22:04 on November 11, 2018 JST | show report | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする