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by Budd Kopman
As her fiftieth birthday nears, pianist Satoko Fujii continues to release recordings at a furious pace. However, despite always extending her compositional and improvisational language, her musical personality remains recognizable by its unique mixture of melody, rhythm, freedom and structure. An amazing release, Heat Wave presents a new band named the Ma-Do Quartet, consisting of players from other bands which Fujii has played in or led--trumpeter Natuski Tamura, Fujii's husband and musical collaborator; bassist Norikatsu Koreyasu, a ...read more
by Dan McClenaghan
Ever prolific avant-garde jazz pianist Satoko Fujii has put together yet another band. She fronts numerous ensembles: a dynamic piano trio with bassist Mark Dresser and drummer Jim Black, the trio Junk Box, with drummer Jim Hollenbeck and trumpeter Natsuki Tamura, big bands in New York and Japan, a powerful rock steeped quartet and a bunch of one-off configurations, in addition to her collaborations with husband, trumpeter Natsuki Tamura--most notably as an accordionist on the three Gato Libre discs. Heat ...read more
by Joe Milazzo
With a form as venerable and yet malleable as the blues, it is the manner of expression as much aswhatis expressed that carries a performer. Some may bristle at this idea, and say it places style above substance. But style, a personal sense of fashion, an idiosyncratic bearing... whatever you choose to call it, this quality is sometimes the real stuff of an artists' achievements. It is his style that allows us to distinguish Albert The Iceman" Collins from any ...read more