Monday, December 07, 2015
AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Hiroshima
The smooth jazz group Hiroshima has been around since the late 70s. They probably had their greatest success recording for Epic in the 80s. But they're still around today. The most unique thing about Hiroshima is they integrate Japanese musical instruments into their sound. Hiroshima was formed in 1974 by flute player Dan Kuramoto, his wife June Kuramoto on the Japanese instrument koto, drummer Danny Yamamoto and percussionist Johnny Mori. Dan Kuramoto grew up in Los Angeles. He got interested in music while he was department chairman of Asian American Studies at Cal State University at Long Beach. June was born in Japan but she grew up on Los Angeles. She is classically trained in the koto. I won't describe it. You'll see it in the video. Meeting June gave Dan the idea of mixing jazz with Japanese music to express his Japanese heritage. The two married and Hiroshima was born. Yamamoto was a jazz drummer but Mori was general manager of the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center in Los Angeles so he was very knowledgeable about Japanese music. They recorded the 1979 album Hiroshima for Arista. Then they signed with Epic and they recorded for Epic through the 80s appearing regularly on the jazz charts. One Wish is from Hiroshima's 1985 album Another Place. Most of Hiroshima's music is written and produced by Dan Kuramoto. This budget comp is a good intro to their Epic recordings. After leaving Epic in 1992, Hiroshima recorded for Qwest, Windham Hill and Telarc. Since Telarc closed, they have their own label through CD Baby. Johnny Mori retired in 2003 and he was replaced by Shoji Kameda. Hiroshima's albums still do well in the smooth jazz market and they still perform live. Here's the video for One Wish by Hiroshima.