Tag Archives: Ronin Arkestra

Certified: Ronin Arkestra, Mark de Clive-Lowe’s Japanese Jazz Supergroup

ronin arkestra

Certified is a series on Bandcamp where we spotlight artists whose work we think is worthy of additional attention.

“I grew up biculturally and bilingually,” explains Mark de Clive-Lowe, the half-Japanese, half-New Zealander keyboardist and producer behind the Tokyo-based jazz collective Ronin Arkestra. “It was always there, but it was just what I was; it was something I took for granted, to be honest. I didn’t really know how to share that through my art.” 

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A Beginner’s Guide to Contemporary Jazz From Japan


Ronin Arkestra

American jazz was forbidden in Japan during World War II, when the swing era and the stirrings of proto-bebop were afoot, but listeners embraced it in secret. As the music continued its steady global expansion in the decades that followed, though, Japan’s jazz obsession was anything but hidden. William Minor, in his 2004 book Jazz Journeys to Japan: The Heart Within, cites a comment from veteran producer Michael Cuscuna: “Japan almost single-handedly kept the jazz record business going during the late 1970s.” And beyond consumers and fans, Minor elaborates, the country also produced its own wealth of jazz players: those who relocated abroad and flourished, those who remained and nurtured local scenes, and those who went back and forth, doing both. Continue reading

This Week’s Essential Releases: Japanese Jazz, Berlin House, Space Punk And More

7 essential

Welcome to Essential Releases, our weekly roundup of the best music on Bandcamp. Each week, we’ll recommend crucial new albums that were released between last Friday and this Friday, plus pick an older LP from the stacks that you may have missed.

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