Japanese Smooth Jazz artist Shigeki Kawahara, you could say, is an internet success story that continues to be told. A very accomplished keyboardist/pianist, he began recording music in 1995 and released his first CD (and to date only full album) “Another World” in 2005. He had been doing music on the side while his day job as an economist takes him around the world. The convenience of the internet however, allowed him to release his music via the world wide web, catching the attention of FM DJs abroad. The album was an online success leading Shigeki to form the jazz trio TIG (Three In the Groove) with Toru Ishiwata (guitar) and Hiroki Ide (drums). Previews of their music can be heard online on his myspace and lastfm pages. Kawahara’s and TIG’s music is reminiscent of smooth jazz legends like Joe Sample, Bob James and FourPlay. (original review by “DJ Aki” of JIN Radio)
Shigeki Kawahara was born in Albany, New York, USA in 1960. One year later, he moved to Japan. He began learning the piano at age three.
In 1972, he bought an album of Quincy Jones named “Smackwater Jack”. This album turned him to Jazz music. It was really fascinating for him to listen to such rich and jazzy arrangement he had never listened to before. Ever since then, he became a long time big fan of Quincy. He learned many cool sounds of musical instruments such as Rhodes Electric piano, Mini Moog, Hammond B-3, Solina String Ensemble, and many more.