A.Piazzolla by Strings and Oboe

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UNAHQ 2011-1 A.Piazzolla by Strings and Oboe

A.Piazzolla by Strings and Oboe



UNAMAS Piazzolla Septet

Jun Tajiri Vn1

Shiori Takeda Lead Vn and Vn2

Aya Ohsumi Va

Kanami Araki Ob

Makito Nishiya Vc1

Yukinori Kobatake Vc2

Ippei Kitamura Cb


Yoichi Tsuchiya/Jun Tajiri (arrange)

2016-19~20 July at Nihon Onkyo Engineering Sound Lab

 4K Behind the Scenes & Interview 

M-01 Oblivion (Astor Piazzolla)  4’17”
M-02 Adios Nonio (Astor Piazzolla) 6’15”
M-03 Premavera Portena (Astor Piazzolla) 5’47”
M-04 Liber Tango (Astor Piazzolla) 4’04”
M-05 Tanguedia (Astor Piazzolla) 4’25”
M-06 Fugata (Astor Piazzolla) 3’11”
M-07 Soledad (Astor Piazzolla) 8’17”


UNAMAS Piazzolla Septet

UNAMAS Piazzolla Septet


Jun Tajiri (Vn1)

Began studying violin at the age of 7 under Yoshiko Honma and late Ryosaku Kubota. On graduating from Toho Gakuen College in 1988, he joined Gunma Symphony Orchestra and was assigned as Assistant Chief Violinist. His activity is based mainly in Gunma Prefecture for concertos with the orchestra as well as solo performance and chamber music.
In 1994, he participated in Prague Spring and Wiener Festwochen music festivals, and was invited to Tokyo Symphony Orchestra as Chief Violinist where he enjoyed the honor of performing the solo with the orchestra in the royal concert in Toka-Gakudo music hall in the Imperial Palace, and he was promoted to Assistant Concert Master in 1998.
Other recent activities include FM broadcast recital program of NHK in 2002, organizing Silius String Quartet in 2004, concert series in IMA hall in Tokyo Symphony SQ, and recordings in movie soundtracks and commercials as studio musician.

Shiori Takeda (Vn2 and Lead Vn at M-03 04 05)

Born in 1988. Graduated from Music Department of Tokyo University of the Arts in 2010 majoring violin instrument. Winner of Kyoto Mayor Award in Kyoto Art Festival “Gathering of Young Musicians Flying to the World”, and other contests such as National Music Students’ Competition, Japan Classic Music Competition, Yokohama International Music Competition, and Rumania International Music Competition.
While being a student, she was active in performing in solo, ensemble, or orchestra, and joined in various recordings and live concert support with the strings she took the lead. She took part in Tokyo Symphony Orchestra as violinist in 2012, and appears in high-res UNAMAS label releases as one of key members: “Four Seasons” in 2014 and “The Art of Fugue” in 2015.”Death and The Maiden”2016.

Aya Ohsumi (Va at M-03 04 05 06)

Graduated from Attached High-school of Japan Women’s University and Music Department of Tokyo University of the Arts, and now in the second year in its graduate school. Began lessons of violin at the age of 3, and changed the instrument to viola at 18. Award-winner in 11th Osaka International Music Competition. The First Prize winner in 13th Burckhardt International Music Competition. She joined Carl Flesch Akademie International in Germany in the summer of 2011 and achieved a diploma with scholarship on her graduation.
Studied violin under Yasuko Ohtani, viola under Kazunori Kawasaki and Kaoru Ohno, and chamber music under such professors as Kazunori Kawasaki, Katsuya Matsubara, Nobuko Yamazaki, Hajime Ohtomo, Ryoichi Fujimori and Hiroyasu Yamamoto. A member of TGS String Ensemble that consists of the graduated classmates of Tokyo University of the Arts, and now violist in Tokyo Symphony since April 2015.

Kanami Araki (Ob at M-01 02 07)

Born in Ibaragi in 1993 and began oboe lessons at the age of 9. Graduated from Tokyo University of the Arts at the head of her class and now in the master class in the graduate school while performing as primary oboist of Tokyo Symphony Orchestra. Unanimous First Prize winner and Audience Award as well at 11th Sony International Oboe Competition in Karuizawa. Many other awards such as Second Prize at 31st Japan Woodwind and Percussion Competition, Oboe Section, University’s Ataka Award and Acanthus Award.
She had her debut recital in April 2016 in Tokyo Spring Music Festival and also performed Mozart, Richard Strauss and Martinu concertos with Tokyo Geidai University Philharmonic and Tokyo Symphony Orchestra. Studied under professors such as Maki Sakamoto, Keiko Narita, Hitoshi Wakui, Yoshiaki Obata and Satoki Aoyama.

Makito Nishiya (Vc1)

Born in Nara. After graduating from Tokyo University of the Arts and its graduate school with master degree, he was accepted by Indiana University in the States for further study. He studied cello under such professors as Fumiaki Kono, Tomoya Kikuchi, Go Tsutsumi, and Janos Starker. Upon returning from the States in 2005, he participated in the initialization of Hyogo Art and Culture Center Orchestra led by Maestro Yutaka Sado. Variety of concert activities of his expand performing as soloist with Kazuyoshi Akiyama, Tadaaki Odaka, Yutaka Sado, and joined sessions with Yasuko Ohtani String Quartet, Ryota Komatsu Tango Orchestra, Live Image, Taro Hakase’s Violin Summit. In January 2013, he collaborated with Shigeo Neriki, pianist to have joint recitals in Tokyo and Kyoto, which was well received winning Aoyama Music Award of the year. In 2015, He formed the unit “ShimizuNishiya” together with Yasuaki Shimizu, the head of violinists in Tokyo Symphony, and released the debut CD album “KODO” that covered only their original compositions by overdubbing just by themselves. He is now the head of cellists in Tokyo Symphony and part-time teacher in Tokyo University of the Arts while being active in composition, arrangement, and performance.

Yukinori Kobatake (Vc2)

Graduated from Tokyo University of the Arts with the master’s degree. Studied under Toshio Mase, Hiroyuki Kaneki, Masaharu Karita, Nobuko Yamasaki, and Ryoichi Fujimori. Participated in Ozawa International Chamber Music Academy. Performed as contracted cellist in Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra, and now his activity widely ranges from solo and chamber music to recordings.
Ippei Kitamura (Cb)

Born in Saitama and graduate of Tokyo University of the Arts in 2002, then achieved the master’s degree in 2005. Being a university student, Kitamura joined in Beppu Argerich Festival. In 2005, he played the soloist in “Pentatonicophilia” composed by Julian Yu in the International Gaudeamus Music Week. In 2006, he joined in Seiji Ozawa Music Class VII “Resurrection”. He studied contrabass under such professors as Yoshio Nagashima, Ganju Kuroki, Naofumi Nishida, Osamu Yamamoto, and Shigeru Ishikawa, and his activities range from orchestras to brass bands, studio sessions, and musicals. After working in Tokyo University of the Arts as lecturer, he continues to be a member of Tokyo Symphony Orchestra. Now studying in the master’s degree section of musicology in Tokyo University of the Arts.

Yoichi Tsuchiya (Arranger)

Born in Shibuya, Tokyo and began studying piano at 20 and then composition afterward. Graduated from the Composition Section of Tokyo University of the Arts in 2011. Studied composition under late Akira Kitamura, Yuzuru Kondoh, Hiroyuki Yamamoto, Masaki Teruya, and Junnosuke Yamamoto. Also learned sound design from Mick Sawaguchi, recording from Toru Kamekawa, and engineering from Masaaki Enatsu.
His production “Prelude 5.1” in 5.1ch represented Japan Student Section in 130th AES Convention London Recording Competition, Modern Multi-track Studio Recording. In Recording Critics of the 131st AES Convention New York, “Cori Spezzati Nova” (5.1ch) was highly praised by Elliot Scheiner who is producer and mixing engineer of the Eagles, Aerosmith, Steely Dan and other well-known artists. Morten Lindberg of 2L label commented “music I’ve never heard”.
In 2012, he won the 5.1 Music Production Award of DTM magazine. In 2014, “The Universe for Surround”, a collection of surround compositions, was released under UNAMAS label.

A.Piazzolla by Strings and Oboe


In the Spirit of Blues

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UNAHQ 1019-1 In the Spirit of Blues
In the Spirit of Blues

Yuki Arimasa Play Steinway D274 NO 427700


M-01 Solitary Morning Rain Yuki Arimasa 7’06”

M-02 Be-Dookie, Yuki Arimasa 5’50”

M-03 Soulful Bill James Williams 5’47”

M-04 Ms. A-Blue Yuki Arimasa 2’14”

M-05 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover Paul Simon 6’07”

M-06 Cubana Chant Ray Bryant 4’00”

M-07 Georgia On My Mind Hoagy Carmichael 7’23”

M-08 It’s Subtle Without Tea, Yuki Arimasa 3’45”
Comment by Yuki Arimasa:
“Recalling my elementary school days, as I started listening to jazz music, the first thing that entirely attracted me was gospel and blues. It is the core concept of the album this time. Gospel and blues are both black music and they are very personal, and therefore I think it wouldn’t’t mean much if I played the type of blues and gospel.
Inside Japanese, the spirit of blues and gospel resides of my own, and that is the reason why they came into my heart so naturally in the childhood without knowing what is gospel or blues, and the album is structured with such originals.”


Yuki Arimasa

Yuki Arimasa
Born in 1961 in Tokyo. Yuki started piano lessons at the age of three, and was totally enchanted at twelve by the piano performance of Oscar Peterson to drive him studying jazz by himself.

On graduating from Tamagawa University, English literature majored in 1983; he entered Berklee College of Music in the US to study piano and compositions where he won the Award of Hank Jones and the Composition Award of Duke Ellington.

After graduating in 1986, he continued to stay in Berklee for 8 years to teach students as assistant professor, and in 1996 he completed his living in the States to go back home to Japan. The first leader album he produced is “The Bitter Life of Scarecrow”.

In 2000, he opened the class of jazz solfege in Senzoku Gakuen University, and actively educates young musicians. The current activities of his extend to his own trio sessions, compositions and arrangements for various projects.

At Jazz Club UNAMAS, his appearance is not only limited to the regular piano trio but also duet and solo offering versatile styles of expressions. His first piano solo album “FOREST” was released in 2011 by UNAMAS-JAZZ label.
The duet project with Tomonao Hara, the trumpeter, was debuted in 2012. His latest piano solo album [Dimensions] was released 2016-06.
Yoshio Obara, Audio-visual critic

Normally a well-trusted relationship in the music creation would be referred to the one among the performing artists, but here between Yuki Arimasa and Mick Sawaguchi, firmly built is a well-trusted relationship of artist and recording engineer・producer. I strongly feel it as I listened to the previous album “Dimensions” and the new “IN THE SPIRIT OF BLUES”.
Throughout the album, Mick captures the sound Yuki radiates out to the space in its entirety and its subtlety. And it is not just the sound, but Mick seems to gaze microcosmically on the atmosphere that floats and even the inner pictures within Yuki himself. Such a relationship won’t happen unless each one understands precisely how the other would act. They might have established it through their past solo and trio recording sessions. We have the word in Japanese “A-Un” for such effortless communication ability, and it looks like the exact basis of this recording. It was quite impressive to me.
In Track 1 “Solitary Morning Rain” for example, lively vivid is the hammering of the keys as if we slide up closer to the piano on the stage. Our ears may be totally fooled by the richest ambience spreading to all the directions, but the deeply on the fundamental notes is the solid and sturdy blues that Mick captures. Or in the case of Track 2 “Be-Dookie”, Yuki’s dynamic performance would not have gained so much true-to-life sensation in the plain 2-channel framework. Front-to-back as well as horizontal dimensionality being provided in the space, the front speakers’ axis succeeds in visualizing a realistic image of piano three-dimensionally. What I felt very unique was Track 5, a song by Paul Simon, in which Yuki transformed this pop number gradually in the latter part by the impressive and strong left hand into a gospel tune. Even the background noise was vivid that I wondered if it were the rebound of pedal actions underneath the instrument. Check if your surround system manages to reproduce it in good shape.
Yuki’s unobtrusive and heavily dark spirit for blues and gospel occasionally reveals melancholic expression, but also turns its feeling to blend the unique flavor of Japanese. The passion of such complications Mick catches beautifully with his skills based on his long experience and variety of technological tricks. The excellence of this recording in surround sound has been made possible by “A-Un” that I should say the Japanese Blues Spirit.

Recording notes
Mick Sawaguchi C.E.O UNAMAS Label

UNAMAS Label has released four piano solo albums those of 3 albums with studio recording. The first album “Forest” by Yuki Arimasa was taken in Onkio Haus studio. It is wonderful to enjoy piano performance with tight sound in studio, but as I did a few classical recordings in Ohga Hall in Karuizawa, I began to imagine how interesting it would be if Yuki plays piano there in the hall. So I made a sample of simulation for him to examine in the spring of 2015.
If the project becomes real, then it is the very unique piano solo in a concert hall for Yuki and at the same time for UNAMAS Label, too. Yuki accepted this, and I made the following three basic concept factors of the project:

1. ART: In order to derive the maximum advantage from the Steinway Hamburg piano in Ohga Hall with excellent tonality, the performance should be original his jazz blues and standard and gospel music.
There, we aimed to capture the beautiful dimensional acoustic of the only event for a tensional moment in Ohga Hall.

2. TECHNOLOGY: We continued using full battery-driven supply and EMC noise treatment as we did in the previous “Dimensions”.
We thought the fundamental aspects were most important especially the piano solo project like this, namely the provision to remove unwanted resonation noises around the piano in the stage. Mr. Ishiguro of Acoustic Revive joined as usual with various tuning kits in addition to familiar mic cables. You can see anti-resonation treatments on the tripod of mic stands and mic cradles, and furthermore a diffuser panel underneath the piano that Onkio Haus studio often used for piano recordings.

3. ENGINEERING: We did 9ch immersive surround recording in this project again.
Similar to the previous session of “Dimensions”, 4 mic placements for the height channels involved some improvement along the stage front edge line aiming the audience side. The cardioids mics were chosen for Top L/R channels while Omni-directional mics for Top Ls/Rs channels that help capturing the instrument clearer in the front side and somewhat ambient-richer in the rear side.



In the Spirit of Blues

Yuki Arimasa Play Steinway D274 NO 427700