Nobuki Takamen - Guitarist/Composer
''a mature player with keen sense of composition [and] considerable technical skill.''
- Vintage Guitar Magazine
''an excellent improviser in his own bop-inspired style.''
- Scott Yanow (The Auther of ''The Great Jazz Guitarists'')
Guitarist/composer Nobuki Takamen is originally from Hiroshima, Japan. A mainstay of the New York jazz scene, Nobuki has toured with his gourp in North Amarica and Europe, performing at some of the best international jazz festivals and clubs including the Montreal International Jazz Festival, the Rochester International Jazz Festival, Blue Note NY, Iridium Jazz Club, Blues Alley and Smalls Jazz Club. He has also toured annually throughout Japan since 2004.
He has four albums released on What's New Records and Summit Records. Nobuki's playing and music have been featured in publications worldwide, including DownBeat, Vintage Guitar Magazine, Just Jazz Guitar, AllAboutJazz, Jazz Podium (Germany), Jazz'n'more (Switzerland), Jazz Special (Denmark), Musica Jazz (Italy), Jazzwise (UK), Swing Journal (Japan), Jazz Life Magazine (Japan), Jazz Guitar Book (Japan), Jazz Guitar Magazine (Japan) and Jazz Japan.
Besides leading his group, Nobuki has been playing solo frequently since his solo concert at the Montreal International Jazz Festival as part of 100% Guitare in 2009. He recorded his first solo guitar album one month prior to his Europe tour in August 2014. This album, Solo Guitar was released in December 2014. Vintage Guitar Magazine commented: ''Takamen is a master. Beautiful solo guitar''.
In 2016, Nobuki released his sixth album, Live in Japan. This 2-disc album was recorded live during his tour in his native country in 2015, with his long-time musical collaborators, Toshiyuki Tanahashi on bass and Naoki Aikawa on drums. Mark Sullivan of AllAboutJazz remarked of this trio music: ''This is jazz guitar trio music at its finest''.
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FESTIVALS & VENUES:
Montreal International Jazz Festival (Canada)
Rochester International Jazz Festival (USA)
Vancouver International Jazz Festival (Canada)
DC Jazz Festival (USA)
Greater Hartford Festival of Jazz (USA)
Riverview Jazz Festival (USA)
Medicine Hat Jazz Fest (Canada)
Jazz YYC Summer Jazz Fest (Canada)
Calgary Jazz Festival (Canada)
Lethbridge Jazz & Blues Festival (Canada)
Nisville Jazz Festival (Serbia)
Petrovac Jazz Fest (Montenegro)
Santo Music Street (Japan)
Iridium Jazz Club (New York, NY)
Blue Note (New York, NY)
Smalls Jazz Club (New York, NY)
Bar Next Door (New York, NY)
Blues Alley (Washington, D.C.)
Esplanade Arts & Heritage Centre (Medicine Hat, Canada)
Martha Cohen Theatre (Calgary, Canada)
ECU (Paris, France)
iF Cafe (Budapest, Hungary)
Malmitalo (Helsinki, Finland)
Tokyo TUC (Tokyo, Japan)
''... Takamen is a master. Beautiful solo guitar... he simply seems to bring the sun out when he plays.''
- Solo Guitar CD review on Vintage Guitar Magazine
''... His music always swings whether taken at a medium or slow tempo, and Takamen, like Joe Pass, sounds like a complete group by himself... throughout the set invigorates the tradition of straight ahead jazz guitar...''
- Solo Guitar CD review by Scott Yanow
''... Takamen clearly is an extremely gifted improviser and composer, and this is a most advantageous showcase for both of those talents.''
- Solo Guitar CD review by Bob Bernotas of Just Jazz
''... What is here is totally enjoyable music, and a truly exceptional solo guitar debut from Nobuki Takamen. He's a jazz guitarist to watch.''
- Solo Guitar CD review by Mark Sullivan of AllAboutJazz
''... the guitarist serves up roller-coaster, angular melodies, played with care on a clear guitar, picking out one crisp note at a time, letting it ring out before moving to the next...''
''... Jim Hall meets Wes Montgomery on their way to a Kenny Burrell show...''
- Critical Jazz
''... This is jazz guitar trio music at its finest...''
- Live in Japan CD review by Mark Sullivan of AllAboutJazz
''... Winning stuff throughout...''
- Live in Japan CD review by Chris Spector of Midwest Record
''... prodigious technique...
strong and lyrical melodies akin to James Taylor's, which sink into the mind, inviting subconscious lyric-writing from even the most casual listen.''
''a keen sense of melody and taste...''
Jazz Guitar Life
''... the compositions are engaging, and the group dynamic is never less than brilliant.''
Just Jazz Guitar
''Takamen's compositions carry his signature and are always characterized by a cleary defined melodic direction and generally a lot of taste.''
- Jazz'n'more (Switzerland)
''... [Nobuki] mixes roughly equal parts Wes Montgomery, Jim Hall and himself in 8 own compositions, which in several instances are so well crafted, melodically and harmonically, that I quickly
start to hum them.''
- Jazz Special (Denmark)
Additional Press Downloads and Links:
Jazz Podium Interview (Germany)
(Page 1 / Page 2)
Jazz Guitar Book Vol. 27 Interview (Japan)
(Page 1 / Page 2)
Jazz Guitar Book Vol. 19 Interview (Japan)
(Page 1 / Page 2)
Interview ''Firmly in the Moment''
by Matt Warnock
of Guitar International
Interview by T. Wesley of TGP Webzine