20+ Years of Tatsu Aoki’s MIYUMI Project

Source: Bandcamp Daily.

Tatsu Aoki was at a crossroads in the mid-1990’s: Though he’d been a respected member of Chicago’s avant-garde scene, he was shunned by white jazz musicians who couldn’t decipher his experimental blend of music, which fused rock, ambient, and jazz. The city’s creative community was (and still is) divided along racial lines—white musicians on the North Side; Black artists on the South Side. Aoki, an experimental bassist from Tokyo, struggled to find footing. “I didn’t exactly fit the profile of doing this kind of avant-garde jazz, not being white or Black,” he says. “My music is ethnically-charged, and I think that did not fit into the 1990’s Chicago music scene. These North Side white guys didn’t like me anyway, so I hung out on the South Side with the Black musicians.”