About

 

Yuto Kanazawa is a versatile Japanese guitarist/bassist in demand for jazz, funk, fusion, gospel, and latin music in NY.

Originally born in Tokyo, Yuto also grew up in Fukushima. He started playing guitar when he was 14 years old and he was performing with local rock bands throughout high school years. Yuto attended Koyo Conservatory Kobe and started playing jazz gigs. He moved to US in 2007 and later he graduated from Berklee College of Music.

In 2013, he released first album Earthwards featruing Grammy winning singer Kurt Elling from Interrobang Records and moved to NY. Yuto was a winner in jazz category of International Songwriting Competition that year, also he formed The United East Jazz Quintet (UEJQ) with Korean and Japanese musicians and toured both countries. UEJQ released album in 2014. In 2015, Yuto formed another project in Japan called itellu and released pop/jazz album featuring a singer Ai Ichikawa. He also started performing regularly with his band at Bar Next Door in NY.

In 2016, he started playing with jazz pianist Kuni Mikami, a former member of Lionel Hampton. Yuto performed at Teatro Ocampo in Cuernavaca Mexico and Guatemala Jazz Festival with Kuni Mikami trio also taught seminars. In NY, Yuto worked with a Japanese singer Miyoko Sparrow and formed Song Sparrow performing Japanese folk songs in experimental jazz format featuring bassist Don Pate from Sonny Rollins band. Yuto also started playing Brazilian 7string guitar and performed with Brazilian music singer Hiromi Suda at Bluenote NY with Petros Klampanis, Julian Shore and Rogério Boccato.

In 2017, Yuto produced duo album Utopia working with Yuto Mitomi and toured Japan featuring a bassist Zach Westfall and a drummer Hironori Suzuki. Also he was playing with funk band Days of Wild every Thursday after midnight at Red Lion in Greenwich Village, and performed with Gregg Errico and Jerry Martini from Sly and Family Stone at BB King Blues Club. In May 2017, Days of Wild performed with Randy Jackson from Zebra at Montauk Music Festival. Yuto also started working regularly with many jazz singers including Rina Komai, Yuto joined her album played with Lonnie Plaxico and Lafayette Harris.

In 2018, another duo album No Day But Today was made with singer Jun Izumi and toured Japan twice. The duo covered unique repeartoir such as Pat Metheny’s First Cirle, Egberto Gismonti’s Frevo, and Will I? from broadway musical Rent.

In 2019, Yuto formed the band MicroCorgi with a drummer Ilya Dynov and a pianist Andrew McGowan. MicroCorgi toured Texas and New Orleans in June with saxophonist Luis Sigüenza.

He also worked with Spanish bagpipe player Carlos Casado’s band Slum Suit, beatbox world champion Kaila Mullady, brooklyn based funk band Shareef Keyes & the Groove, Gary Brocks a former trombonist of The O’Jays and many others.