saxophonist and composer Saco Yasuma has been noted for
her strong originality in playing and writing. She has
embarked on her latest journey, transcending conventional
musical genres: form, harmony and time. Her new release
“Another Rain” is a testimony of this evolution.
Her intention is completely expressed through a multi-talented
ensemble, Roy Campbell Jr. on trumpet, Andrew Bemkey on
piano and bass clarinet, Ken Filiano on bass and Michael
T. A. Thompson on drums.
“Another Rain,” features three pieces about
water and people. The title tune “Another Rain”
expresses that the trouble which we face in our daily
lives is like another rain. It bothers us when we don’t
want rain, but we also know it cleanses us, nurtures us
and refreshes us, and gives us a hope for another beautiful
day. “Calm Water” is the water which is calm
like a big river or lake, and also the water which makes
us stay calm and peaceful. We might keep it in our pocket
and take it out when we need it, and chill out. “Liquid
Entity” is about ourselves. We are liquid entity.
We are free to flow out of our body, shapeless and frameless,
enjoying the freedom. The ensemble develops her melodic
themes, then bring them back home. Their interplay weaves
a colorful tapestry in a dialogue of love and trust.
Saco started studied classical piano at age six with her
father. As a young student of music, she wrote songs,
piano pieces and arrangements of pop songs for school
chorus groups when she was in her early teens. She was
an active keyboardist in rock, funk and reggae groups
and worked with singer- songwriters in Tokyo until she
came to New York in 1989. In New York, she fell in love
with the concept of Jazz: its freedom of expression, improvisational
elements and throbbing swing rhythms. She studied the
saxophone and performed in Jazz, Brazilian, Salsa and
Afro-pop bands. Around the year 2000, she began composing
regularly, and realized that all her musical experiences,
including the Japanese traditional sounds of her childhood
found their way into her writing. She discovered that
free Jazz was the ultimate form of improvisation for her,
when she was invited to play with free jazz players in
the NYC downtown scene. Free jazz became another ingredient
in Saco’s musical stew, as musicians and fans really
began to take notice of her unique voice.
To read reviews about this album, go to sacoyasuma.com.