Primary Instrument: Piano
2011 has been pianist Yoko Miwa’s most successful year to date. She has seen her trio (Miwa--piano, Greg Loughman-- acoustic bass, Scott Goulding--drums) graduate from entry- level gigs to its current presence as a mainstay in Boston’s leading jazz clubs. In August, she was appointed Assistant Professor at Berklee College. And Live at Scullers Jazz Club, her trio’s fifth and most accomplished CD, has an October release date.
Miwa began honing her musical skills in the womb. “My Mom can sing standards in English, even though she doesn’t speak the language,” explains the native of Kobe, Japan. “She wanted one of her kids to be a pianist, and would play music every night, from before I was born. I think that’s why I have perfect pitch.” By the age of four, Miwa began playing piano by ear, with classical lessons commencing two years later, and for the next decade her focus was entirely on classical music. “I didn’t know much jazz,” she recalls, “but I began to get interested when I heard ‘Smoke Gets in Your Eyes’ in a movie. A clerk in a rental store suggested that I listen to Herbie Hancock’s Maiden Voyage and some Bud Powell, but at first they sounded too difficult for me.”...
Berklee College of Music - Assistant Professor, Piano Department