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Asian American Jazz

A busker playing a shamisen at a pedestrian ma...
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What is Asian American Jazz Music

Asian American Jazz Music was started by Asian American Jazz musicians in the USA in the 20th century. Of course, they’d been playing jazz for years, but it wasn’t until around the 1970’s and 1980’s that they began to really develop their own distinct sound. They combine standard jazz instruments with instruments of a more Asian flavor – the erhu, kulintang, taiko and shamisen – instruments which really do give an Asian feel to the Asian American Jazz music.

Representative Asian American Jazz Musicians

Asian American Jazz Musicians are largely of Chinese or Japanese ancestry, although there are also some notable musicians with their origins in India, Vietnam, Iran and the Philippines. Notable Asian American Jazz musicians include Glenn Horiuchi, Jon Jang, Anthony Brown, Gerald Oshita and Russel Baba which were all from the west coast of America, although New Yorkers Jason Kao Hwang and Fred Ho also were instrumental in creating this unique sound.

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