Norihide Shiota – Mini Interview

1. Where are you from and how did you first become interested in music?

I’m from Tokyo. I was about 10 or 11 years old when my sister came home once with YMO and Beatles LPs. I also saw the Japanese movie “Akuryou-tou” (悪霊島1981) which used “Let it Be” in the soundtrack as part of the story was about the John Lennon assassination.

2. Where did you learn to play bass and also composition/band-leading?
I attended music school but most of what I learned came through actual live performance.
I’ve had a lot of teachers everywhere;Tokyo-Atlanta-New Orleans-New York-Boston. I attended the Berklee Collage of Music when I was 40 years old to study production and recording, and also continued to take bass lessons. Not only Jazz, all genres.

3. You lived many years in NYC: how did that happen and why did you stay?
Well, my first experience in the U.S. was in New Orleans! I then went to New York because NYC is Jazz!!

I performed in NY with many musicians including Winard Harper, Eric Lewis, Wess Anderson, Jon Ellis etc, playing live at the Bluenote, Cleopatra’s Needle, Charlie Parker Jazz festival etc.
I also started producing bands in NY. My bands SFKUaNK!! and Bei Xu. We sold very well in Japan and on the jazz charts at Tower Record and HMV Jazz. We also did many Japan tours too.

4. Current projects?
Producing Karen Aoki and Bei Xu. Recording Masa Osaka, playing bass for my own band, Riyoko Takagi, Yoshiaki Masuo etc.
I’m just trying to keep working in a triangle between playing the bass, producing and being a recording engineer.

5. Three favorite albums?
1.SFKUaNK!! by SFKUaNK!!, 2. Lost in Translation by Bei Xu, 3.Jazz!! by SuperStars  I’m only curious about what I’m doing. Why not? Lol!

Norihide Shiota performs regularly at Naru in Ochanomizu, as well as many other live spots around town.

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Mr. OK Jazz is a 20+ year resident of Japan and spends all his free time wandering the Kanto area looking for jazz cafes, bars, clubs and record stores. For two years he hosted the OK Jazz radio show on InterFM Radio, currently the OK Jazz podcast. You can reach him at *protected email*