Japanese jazz tenor saxophonist, composer and arranger Masashi Usui has been in Montreal since 2014. He has a special ability to interpret traditional American jazz but with a contemporary freshness. He is on a pilgrimage to Montreal, and soaking up the rich jazz scene. He graduated Masters of Music in Jazz Performance at Schulich School of Music of McGill University in which he acquired a Schulich Scholarship and a Graduate Excellence Fellowship.
He has accompanied prominent jazz artists in North America, including drummer Fukushi Tainaka, André White, Dave Laing, and Mark Taylor, saxophonist Al McLean, trumpeter Kevin Dean, guitarist Mike Rud, and Greg Clayton, pianist André White, Geoff Lapp, Joe Sealy, Paul Shrofel, and Richard Clements, bassist Alec Walkington, Alex Bellegarde, Elias Bailey, and Adrian Vedady.
In Japan, saxophonist Akira Ohmori, guitarist Sunao Wada, pianist Hideaki Yoshioka.