By Scott Nagatani, Musician and composer
The loose theme of the evening is Bronzeville, 2013.
The music LosAKAtombros plays is headed in a direction of more original compositions and jazz arrangements of Japanese folksongs.
But our roots are Coltrane, Monk, and other jazz giants.
Friday (Aug 23), we will also pay homage to Bronzeville – what J-town L.A. became during the WWII evacuation of our families and community.
Many nightclubs and all night “breakfast” clubs flourished in the abandoned buildings of J-town.
These clubs became a hotspot for Black musicians from the Central Avenue music scene as well as jazz musicians (i.e. Charlie Parker) looking for an all night jam.
It is now an almost forgotten chapter of JA history in L.A. for many reasons, many related to the Nisei reluctancy to talk about the WWII internment as well as the contradictions and struggles of being Japanese in American/Americans of Japanese ancestry afterwards.
Understandably, tension did exist when the JA business owners and residents returned from camp, laying claim to their properties, signaling the end of Bronzeville and signaling the rebirth of the community we now call Little Tokyo.
The band’s goal is not to give a history lesson, but to honor our family roots in Little Tokyo as well as the musical influence that the jazz musicians, many who lived and played in Bronzeville (their roots), had on us personally.
LosAKAtombros in Little Tokyo – Bronzeville, 2013
An evening of JAzz music and vocals
August 23, 2013, 7 – 11pm (vocal set at 10pm)
Nirvana Bar & Grill Nirvana, 314 E. 1st Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012
$10 music cover
Tracy Wannomae – saxophone
Scott Nagatani – piano
Taiji Miyagawa – bass
David Cheung – drums
Erika Mariko Olsen
Recommended parking lot – Aiso Parking Lot, NW corner of Judge John Aiso (San Pedro St.) & 1st Street. Entrance is across the street from Union Church (East West Players) – $3 after 5 pm and open until 2 am.
Nirvana is now exclusively a bar, they no longer serve food.