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And Then They Came For Us / UN-AMERICAN

SKU AIR0095 Category

The Miyumi Project is Tatsu Aoki s laboratory of sound, where he explores the nexus of cultures: Asian and American; Japanese and African; past and present. The compositions provide a conceptual framework for each band member to interpret. Traverse The Miyumi Project’s musical soundscape – Chosen as the official musical presenters for Yoko Ono’s “Skylanding” Project here in Chicago and the resulting SKYLANDING album, Tatsu Aoki and his featured ensemble offer a fusion of Avant-garde jazz interwoven with traditional taiko drumming; it is an innovative, energetic musical experience. The group contributed their unique vibe to the soundtrack of the film documentary addressing the Japanese American Incarceration, “And Then They Came for Us”, and released the corresponding album: “And then They Came for Us – Un-American”; the film has since then received the 2018 Silver Gavel Award for Documentaries by the American Bar Association On his latest project, Tatsu Aoki with his ensemble the Miyumi Project, contributes their unique vibe to the soundtrack of “And Then They Came for Us”; a documentary film addressing the Japanese American Incarceration, co-directed by celebrated director Abby Ginzberg and Ken Schneider. The corresponding album, “And Then They Came for Us | Un-American”, soon followed, fusing experimental music to narrative musical constructs, providing a musical journey dedicated to both the documentary film, and the Photo Book : UN-AMERICAN by Richard Cahan and Michael Williams. The film has since then received the 2018 Silver Gavel Award for Documentaries by the American Bar Association. Tatsu Aoki s ensemble the Miyumi Project is one of the longest standing amalgams of Chicago s avant-garde jazz and Japanese traditional music. Their presentation draws upon aesthetics rooted in the Japanese tradition. Japanese Classical dance and Japanese taiko drumming permeate throughout the laboratory of sound where he explores the nexus of cultures: Asian and American; Japanese and African; past and present. The improvised compositions provide a conceptual framework for each band member to interpret, which in turn coalesce and transform into a vast contemporary expanse of musical immersion for the audience. Tatsu Aoki’s The Miyumi Project was chosen as the official musical presenters for Yoko Ono’s “Skylanding” Project here in Chicago and resulted in the Yoko Ono produced SKYLANDING album, which was an innovative, energetic musical experience. Each successive grouping of Miyumi Project musicians over the past two decades has contributed to the unique blending of modern application with traditional sensibility. The final result is a continuous evolution of a “live and raw” musical happening. The current Miyumi Project members are: Tatsu Aoki, Mwata Bowden, Coco Elysses, Avreeayl Ra, Edward Wilkerson, Jr., Jaime Kempkers, and Kioto Aoki; the two most recent albums also feature musical contributions from members of the traditional Taiko drumming group: Tsukasa Taiko.


Tatsu Aoki Bass, Shamisen, Taiko
Edward Wilkerson Woodwinds
Jamie Kempkers Cello
Rami Atassi Electric Guitar
Kioto Aoki Taiko, Percussion
Miyumi Aoki Bamboo Flute
Jun Takanarita Drums, Percussion

Melody Takata Taiko (Tracks 2, 12)
Francis Wong Woodwinds (Tracks 2, 11, 12)
Jonathan Chen Violin, Electronics (Track 4)
Chad Taylor Drums (Track 11)
Reza Utopicblue Electric Gutar (Track 10)
Mwata Bowden Woodwinds (Track 15)
Coco Elysses Conga, Percussion (Track 15)
Avreeayl Ra Drums (Track 15)

Tsukasa Taiko:
Kiyomi Negi
Koji Negi
Noriko Sugiyama
Eigen Aoki

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