One of the most exciting jazz pianists and composers of her generation
Chihiro Yamanaka (piano)
Yasushi Nakamura (bass)
John Davis (drums)
Chihiro Yamanaka, Universal Music recording artist, is one of the most exciting jazz pianists and composers of her generation, and the leader of the Chihiro Yamanaka Trio.
Chihiro’s music pivots between her strikingly original compositions and her unique arrangements in which she accomplishes the impressive feat of introducing the element of surprise into some of the most famous songs in the jazz repertoire, contemporary popular music, and even the works of classical composers.
Chihiro takes this approach to yet another level with her Beatles tribute, the new CD Because (Universal/Decca), a groundbreaking disc that features some of the most creative reworkings of Beatles classics ever recorded. Along with the title track, “Because” (from Abbey Road), Chihiro transforms such great songs as “Yesterday” and “Michelle” into glittering vistas of her musical imagination.
Chihiro’s upcoming concert at Yoshi’s San Francisco marks her 3rd appearance at the venue. Chihiro performs regularly on 3 continents. Her recent U.S. concerts have included the Mary Lou Williams Women In Jazz Festival at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, recorded for broadcast on National Public Radio's "JazzSet with Dee Dee Bridgewater." In New York City, Chihiro’s home base, her concerts have included Iridium Jazz Club, the Blue Note, Carnegie Hall and Dizzy’s at Jazz At Lincoln Center.
Chihiro's most celebrated concerts in Europe have included opening for Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter and Marcus Miller in the "Tribute to Miles" concert at the Umbria Jazz Festival. Jazz Times reported that when Chihiro performed at this concert, "right and left, jaws were dropping."
In Japan, Chihiro routinely sells out the top jazz clubs, such as Blue Note Tokyo, and as a classical pianist she has performed Gershwin’s “Rhapsody In Blue” with major symphony orchestras. She has become a multi-media celebrity in Japan, hosting her own radio show, making TV appearances, and authoring a book, “The Landscape With Jazz.”
Keeping pace with Chihiro’s whirlwind touring schedule is her prolific international recording career with Universal. In the past 2 years she has had four CD releases. Besides Because, they include Molto Cantabile, After Hours 2, and the U.S. release of Reminiscence. In the same period Chihiro and Universal also have released an EP, Still Working, and a DVD, Live In New York, videotaped at Iridium Jazz Club. The Live In New York DVD gives Chihiro’s fans the opportunity to experience on video the spectacular visual presentation that has been seen by anyone who has witnessed the fireball of energy and virtuosity on display at a live Chihiro concert appearance.
Recently, Universal Music celebrated the 75th anniversary of Blue Note Records by releasing a CD compiled by Chihiro, My Favorite Blue Note, her selection of classic Blue Note Records tracks by artists such as Monk and Blakey, with 2 new tracks by Chihiro herself. On her CD Molto Cantabile, Chihiro applies her imaginative arranging techniques to create an amazing fusion of jazz and classical music, featuring her own compositions and her arrangements of great works by Beethoven, Mozart and other composers.