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Akiyoshi, Toshiko

jazz considered time saxophonist

Akiyoshi, Toshiko, outstanding Chinese jazz artist; b. Darien, Manchuria, China, Dec. 12, 1929. Toshiko Akiyoshi is living proof that jazz is a world-wide phenomenon. Born in China and raised in Japan, Akiyoshi was introduced to jazz when she was still in her teens through the recordings of Teddy Wilson. While in her twenties and performing around Tokyo, she was heard by Oscar Peterson, who then told impresario Norman Granz that Akiyoshi was “the greatest female jazz pianist” This in turn led to her receiving a scholarship for the Berklee School of Music. She later formed a quartet with her husband at the time, alto saxophonist Charlie Mariano, recording for the Candid label prior to hooking up briefly with Charles Mingus in 1962. Shortly after the Mingus stint, Akiyoshi went back to Japan before returning to America where, in 1965, she was a piano teacher at jazz clinics in Reno, Nev. and Salt Lake City, Utah. Since that time she has founded her big band, now known as the Toshiko Akiyoshi Jazz Orch. (featuring saxophonist Lew Tabackin, her current husband), and recorded with it for RCA, Jam, and Ascent. The orchestra is now considered her main musical voice and her writing and arranging for them are widely considered to be among the best in the world.

Akkad, Moustapha (1930–2005) - PERSONAL HISTORY, INFLUENCES AND CONTRIBUTIONS, THE WORLD’S PERSPECTIVE, LEGACY [next] [back] Akhenaten - BEGINNINGS., ATEN., NEW RELIGION., ROYAL FAMILY., AFTERLIFE., AMUN., SOURCES

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