Hailing originally from Tokyo, Japan, Rintaro Mikami is a jazz drummer, percussionist and composer based in New York City. Known for a wide range dynamics, supportive orchestration, and very narrative performance and compositions, Rintaro draws from a jazz tradition to a range of influences from rock to world cultural music such as Brazilian, Argentinian and mid-Eastern.
He started playing drums at the age of 12 and immediately showed his talent in local music community. After working as a drummer in rock music scene in Tokyo, his musical interest gradually gravitated towards Jazz.
In the spring of 2016, having been awarded a substantial scholarship to The Collective School of Music, Rintaro came to New York to pursue his musical journey, and continued his study at The School of Jazz and Contemporary Music at The New School with a substantial scholarship award and earned Bachelor of Fine Arts degree on December 2022. While he was pursuing jazz performance in drum set by studying with many world renowned jazz musicians such as Carl Allen, Ari Hoenig, Allison Miller and Kush Abadey, he has also gotten into percussions study with Keita Ogawa and Billy Martin, which allowed him to add unique voices into his style through wide variety of rhythms and instruments.
Over the years, Rintaro has been performing and recording over the world. In New York City, he is frequently getting calls for playing in some of representative jazz venues/clubs in the city such as Ornithology Jazz Club and Nublu. In 2019, he joined a contemporary jazz band called Deeper Dreamer, which consists of himself, Ariel Bart, Taka Nawashiro, Hanna Inui and Vicious Cajado, and has done many shows throughout the year including 2020 Jazz Education Network conference held in New Orleans, Louisiana, and PJS Jazz Society’s Second Sunday concert March 8th 2020 in the First Presbyterian Church in Mount Vernon, curated by one of the historically renowned jazz bassists, Reggie Workman. Their first record “Deeper Dreamer” on September 1st 2020. In 2021, he appeared on Bern International Jazz Festival in Switzerland as a drummer of Layla Evangelia Group. In 2022, he formed co-leader trio with a guitarist Jacob Aviner and a bassist Sean Hannon and has done New England tour. Their first album is going to be released on July 21st 2023 from Adyharopa records. In February 2023, he joined the U.S. tour as a percussionist for a Slovakian singer Ester Weisnerova.
As a bandleader and composer, on September 15th 2023, Rintaro has released his debut album with the the pianist Henry Plotnick, the guitarist Omri Bar Giora, the bassist Bar Filipowicz, the saxophonist David Truilo, the harmonicist Ariel Bart, and the singer Lily Resnikoff. Album consists of eight original compositions of him, which reflected his childhood memory where he spend the time in small island and create one big completed story which is almost like a movie. He succeeded having an album release show at Nublu 151.