Motoshi Kosako & Michael Manring Duo

 

Motoshi Kosako / Harpist, Composer, Improvisor 

Born in Matsuyama City, Japan. He started his musical training on the piano and also the guitar. In Tokyo he played the acoustic and electric guitar in professional Jazz bands and the Swing Journal magazine described him as “one of the most remarkable young Jazz musicians.”

 In 1997, Mr. Kosako moved to the United States and soon after he started playing the harp. He is primarily self- taught with a few lessons to learn fundamental harp technique.  He was the principal harpist of Stockton Symphony Orchestra in California between 2005-2010 and the featuring soloist for 2009-2010 season.

 His latest music innovation is improvisation and composition for the harp. In 2007 he won the second place in Lyon & Healy International Jazz & Pop Harp Competition and received the “Best of Sacramento” award from Sacramento Magazine as “Best Jazz Hound in Tie and Tail”. Sacramento Magazine says, “Kosako plays with fluid, modern style that evokes Keith Jarrett and Chick Corea.” His groundbreaking style is also noted in Harp Column as “Motoshi Kosako, a Japanese native whose introspective soloing was reminiscent of Keith Jarrett.” He plays numerous original compositions and standards as solo or in trio and quartet. Since 2008 he started touring internationally to give performances and various workshops and he is considered as one of the most influential Jazz harpist in the world. He tours internationally to give concert, lectures and workshops. The numerous international music festivals he was invited are including “The future of harp in Yokohama”  in Japan, “VIII Rio Harp Festival” in Rio de Janeiro, brazil, “American Harp Society National Conference  2014” in New Orleans and “World Harp Congress, Sydney 2014” in Australia. 

 He performs improvisation and original compositions as solo or in ensembles with top jazz musicians including Grammy award winning reeds player, Paul McCandless, master acoustic bassist, Bill Douglass, innovative electric fret-less bassist, Michael Manring and eminent jazz guitarist, Akio Sasajima. He released 2 classical solo albums in 2002 and 2003, and 10 jazz albums between 2008 and 2017.

 In 2008, he joined NPO holistic health research group in Japan (Total Health Research Group) and began conducting research projects involving sound healing and practical application of music to occupational fields for the promotion of health. In 2012 the  public medicine professional journal, “Science of Public health” in Japan published his research article “Total Health and Music”. He holds a B.S of health science and nursing, and is a registered nurse and public health nurse along with 2nd degree black belt of Judo.

Michael Manring / Electric bassist, composer, improvisor 

Hailed by many as the world’s leading solo bassist, Michael Manring has been pushing back the boundaries of what’s possible on the bass guitar for over three decades. While his technical skill and innovations always make an impression, it is his ability to communicate on a profound emotional level that most touches listeners. As editor Tom Darter wrote in Keyboard magazine after seeing one of Michael's solo concerts, "Forget his astounding technique and musicality; forget his absolute command of his instruments; forget how seamlessly the musical ideas and the performance of them were wedded together...The enlightenment came most from feeling (seeing, hearing) the joy Michael felt to be playing...his brand of transcendental chops and musical understanding...was all in the service of the final outcome, the joy of making music." 

 

Building on the conceptions of his teacher, the late bass legend Jaco Pastorius, Michael has developed a new approach to the instrument that includes unorthodox tunings, techniques and methodologies. He has honed his skills on hundreds of recordings as a session musician and thousands of concerts throughout the world in venues including Carnegie Hall in NY, Yamaha Hall in Tokyo and Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco. Michael has worked with a surprisingly diverse collection of musicians from New Age keyboardist Suzanne Ciani to avant-improv guitar innovator Henry Kaiser to celebrated folk troubadour John Gorka to experimental post-metal rockers Tim Alexander (Primus) and Alex Skolnick (Testament) to electro-pop pioneer Thomas Dolby. His long-term collaboration and close friendship with the late acoustic guitar genius Michael Hedges led to a lengthy stint as house bassist for Windham Hill Records; a label for whom he also worked as a solo artist, releasing four recordings under his own name: Unusual Weather (1986), Toward the Center of the Night (1989), Drastic Measures (1991) and Thonk (1994). These, along with his 1998 release The Book of Flame on the Alchemy record label earned him an international reputation as "a master of the fretless bass without rival." (Guitar Club Magazine, Italy). He has garnered two gold records, Grammy and Bammie nominations, a Berklee School of Music Distinguished Alumni Award, two Just Plain Folks Awards and numerous Bass Player Magazine Reader's Poll awards including 1994 Bassist of the Year. He was also the subject of a PBS TV documentary, “The Artist's Profile: Michael Manring” and a Youtube video of him playing his iconic solo piece “Selene” has well over a million views.

 

In his solo concerts Michael weaves together his musical influences into a tapestry rich with expression, virtuosity, humor and meaning. As one writer put it, "Michael Manring can do more with a bass than even the most creative individual could imagine" (L. Pierce Carson, Napa Valley Register). His newest release Soliloquy, performed entirely solo without overdubs, is the best recorded example yet of that depth and diversity. Using a variety of bass guitars and the far-reaching, innovative approaches he is renowned for, with Enhanced CD content including Michael’s extensive 24-page liner notes detailing the composing and recording process, photos and live performance videos, Soliloquy takes the listener on a unique musical journey. We hope you'll follow the advice of France's Musicien magazine: "Do not miss your next opportunity to discover the bassist with the most fresh and inventive playing today."

 

Find me at

YouTube -- https://www.youtube.com/user/MotoshiKosako/videos Twitter -- https://twitter.com/motoshikosako Facebook -- https://www.facebook.com/pages/Motoshi-Kosako/58880892468 CD Baby -- https://www.cdbaby.com/Search/bW90b3NoaSBrb3Nha28%3d/0

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