Tuesday, January 20, 2015

New From Yuko Ito!

Japanese Born - But With A Brazilian Heart
O Cantador

Artist Biography
A native of Tokyo, Japan, Yuko Ito has been performing publicly in a wide range of styles: pop, rock, R&B, jazz funk, gospel, free jazz and various forms of Brazilian music since high school. Her early musical career began when she founded the girl’s rock band, Sissy Boy, which produced two CDs: Marcy’s Factory, with Vaan Media, and Kick Off Boy’s, with Crown Records Japan. Even with her early success in Japan, Yuko’s musical vision was broad, which led her to make a move to New York City in 1994, where she could explore her musical ideas and vision. A vocal coach soon encouraged her to explore jazz and eventually this led to her formal studies, which included receiving a B.F.A degree from City College of New York in music (Jazz Vocal Performance, where she studied with Sheila Jordan). After a jam session Yuko attended while still in school, she was invited by jazz artist Sabir Mateen to perform with him. This encouraged her to continue to draw deeply from the jazz tradition in her work and deepen her love of the genre. Ito has performed with the Harlem Gospel Choir and appeared at Blue Note (New York). She has also performed with the Harlem Gospel Choir in Times Square on Good Morning America (ABC) and the “New Yorker”( NHK BS1). Still residing in New York, Ito has performed at many of the city’s top venues: Lenox Lounge, The Kitano, The Bitter End and Tomi Jazz and regularly tours in Japan.
The culmination of her experiences in multiple genres is what gives Ito her rebellious verve, along with her jazz phrasing. Having been lured by positive lyrics, unique beats and passionate movement, Ito incorporates a melodic structure to form a style that is uniquely hers; truly a mature songstress. Ito’s passion for Brazilian music as shown by her previous album Mania De VocĂȘ, was the cornerstone of introduction to a keenly talented young woman from Japan, though born and raised in her native land has evolved into a born again Brazilian New Yorker, even her fellow native born Brazilian musician friends tough her Portuguese as being flawless and her ability to interpret the music unmatched and purely original.

CD Description

Yuko Ito’s second Brazilian Jazz offering O Cantador is co-produced by the great pianist / Composer Cidinho Teixeira. The recording is a collection of Brazilian compositions by Djavan, Marcos Valle, Milton Nascimento, Jorge Ben, Dori Caymmi and Domingunhos, displaying a wonderful collection of varied textures. The album is also adored with a Japanese Traditional song, “Takeda No Komoriuta” additionally; Ito set the words of an African Chant to music. “Guerrilla” a song from Ito’s Japanese Rock Band, Red Warriors, is sung with Portuguese lyrics.
Ito’s passion for the rich Brazilian musical tradition is evidenced by her all-star band, each are highly accomplished Brazilian and Latin Musicians and her intense focus on phrasing and diction is extremely authentic and pays homage to the tradition. Ito offers and highly engaging journey of cultures all firmly rooted in the Brazilian traditions, guaranteed to uplift the listener and absorb aficionados.