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Kaoru Watanabe: a rare musician who traverses the traditional music forms both East and West, classical and contemporary, predetermined and improvisational. His expertise in taiko drumming and bamboo flutes gives his music both force with extreme delicacy. His superb musicianship makes him a joy to create with. He enriches any musical situation with his unique perspective.
— Jason Moran (Jazz Pianist, Blue Note Recording Artist)
 

Hello friends,

I have a couple of shows coming up in NY that I'm very excited about. The Brooklyn-based collective Motions (with Chris Dingman, Tim Keiper, Matt Kilmer and myself) is finishing out what has developed into a three month long residency at the East Village venue Nublu. We've been experimenting with different iterations of the group - bringing in such artists as Ches Smith, Tamango and Yasushi Nakamura and having amazing guests sitting in with us. Our next (and last for the time being) show is this coming Sunday, January 25th at 9pm.  Keita Ogawa will be joining us on percussion with other special guests.

 After that I'll be in LA for about week performing with the great On Ensemble and Sumie Kaneko. Back in New York after that, I'll be performing with long-time collaborator and mentor Kenny Endo with my group Ne-O Ensemble at Shapeshifter. I'm honored and excited to have been asked by Shapeshifter to be one of their first artists-in-residence as part of their new non-profit Shapeshifter Plus. We will be presenting a series of concerts and workshops over the course of a year and this event is a sort of pre-residency celebration.

 The following day, I will be flying to Japan for some performances with such artists as Semba Kiyohiko, Tetsuro Naito, Shogo Yoshi, Yuko Miyagawa and the great calligrapher Koji Kakinuma.

 Thank you to everyone for your ongoing support and friendship.


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