Day 11 - Tokyo School of Music clinic & Performance with Akikazu Nakamura at Basement Bar
Today, we met up early with Keiko Shima at our hotel early in the morning to head to the Tokyo School of Music for an interview and performance. We were greeted by the American guitarist Chris Juergensen, who was from Los Angeles but had been teaching in Tokyo for 25 years! He had us on his talk show, Chris' Room, where he asked us about our experience becoming musicians and attending Berklee in front of a live student audience. We then discussed our plans after we left Berklee, and then had a short jam session. We played a blues, "Straight, No Chaser", and then played a couple of my compositions for the students. Overall, we had a great time, and the students were very inquisitive. We shared Berklee materials and then proceeded to tour the school, which had amazing facilities, and had hosted such artist as Michael Jackson, Marcus Miller, and Omar Hakim. After the clinic at Tokyo School of Music, we were taken to the venue we were performing at that evening, the Basement Bar.
Then, we had an amazing performance with the Berklee Alumni, and world class shakuhachi master Akikazu Nakamura. Akikazu has performed with many of the great musical artists of our time, and has travelled all over the world with the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He is very well known in Japan and it was an honor to have him perform with us! There were many very talented musicians that opened for us, which made for a very good turnout, and we had a lot of momentum leading up to our performance. We featured Akikazu on the first three songs, and also played his original composition titled "Magnetic Fantasy", which uses a lot of odd time signatures and goes in-between different time signatures. Despite us having only about 10 minutes to rehearse with Akikazu, the musicality was very high! The audience really focused on the sounds coming from the stage, and the intensity was very high throughout the performance! We hope to return to Basement Bar on our next trip to Japan!