Genre : Jazz
About This Act :
\"She is the rare female singer/songwriter who also produces her own works.\" 1/28/2013 1:38:59 AM - MONDAY MICHIRU
The first thing people ask is how Tokyo-born Monday Michiru got her unique name, which was chosen by her parents – jazz pianist Toshiko Akiyoshi and jazz saxophonist Charlie Mariano – as a reflection of both her Japanese and American heritage. With music obviously in her blood, Monday showed an intense interest in the arts from an early age, studying modern dance and ballet for five years starting at the age of 8, and classical flute for eight years at age 11. In 1979, Monday attended the National Music Camp in Interlochen, Michigan where she was recognized for her talent and awarded a scholarship from both the Armstrong Flute Association and the Interlochen Arts Academy to further attend the prestigious school full time. It was during her years at IAA that she discovered the strength of another instrument – her voice.
After graduating IAA, Monday shifted her studies from the classical flute and began concentrating on her voice more seriously with the desire to create original works grounded in the more modern popular music styles. In 1987, she was scouted by a young Japanese movie director named Shinji Somai to appear as a lead in his movie “Hikaru Onna” (“Luminous Woman”), a cinematic tale of an opera singer. Mr. Somai was infamous in Japan at the time for casting unknown young people with potential and no formal acting experience. The film entered the International Tokyo Film Festival that year and Monday found herself winning Best New Actress awards from Kinema Junpo, The Japan Academy and the Yokohama Film Festival. After the success of “Hikaru Onna,\" she continued her newfound and unexpected acting career in Japan, which expanded to include theatre, television, hosting her own radio programs, modeling for major commercial ads, and appearing on shows from major broadcasting networks as a “personality.\" But her heart was always yearning for music
It was in 1991 that Monday finally had the opportunity to reroute her endeavors back to music. She released her debut solo album that year and by 1993, Monday was steadily recording and releasing albums in Japan and later in Europe, Australia, Asia and South America. In addition to her work as a solo artist, she also became a featured singer/writer, collaborating with groups and artists including DJ Krush, Mondo Grosso, Kyoto Jazz Massive, Basement Jaxx, UA, Masters At Work, Joe Clausell, Lisa Ono and many others. While she is best known for being one of the pioneers of the acid jazz movement in Japan in the early 90s and later as one of the few women in Japan\'s underground club scene, Monday has undoubtedly crossed over and beyond the scope of club music to a style that is undeniably and uniquely her own, fusing various influences such as jazz, soul, Latin and other elements. She is also one of the rare female singer/songwriters who produces her own work.
Monday has appeared at numerous music festivals and clubs both in Japan, Europe and the U.S., including the historial Bohemian Caverns in D.C. (2008 & 2009), Billboard Live in Tokyo & Osaka (2009), Jak Jazz Festival in Jakarta, Indonesia (2006 & 2007), the Greater Tokyo Music Festival at Honmonji, Tokyo (2003 & 2006), the Okayama Jazz Festival (2003), the Blue Note Clubs in New York and throughout Japan, SOBs (NY), the Newport Jazz Festival in Madarao (1999), The Baltic Jazz Festival (1999), North Sea Jazz Festival (1997), Montreux Jazz Festival (1997), Stuttgart Jazz Festival (1997), The Phoenix Festival (1996), Beppu Jazz Festival (1995), etc. She currently resides in New York City with her husband, jazz trumpeter Alex Sipiagin, and continues to record and tour with her own group as well as collaborating with other artists. Her recent recordings have been released in Japan as well as through ArtistShare, Amazon, and Dusty Groove.
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