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Rema Hasumi - UTAZATA

Rema Hasumi - UTAZATA

Track List

  1. Azuma Asobi
  2. Goeika
  3. Clouds Toward East Turning Madder (CD only)
  4. Chikuzen Imayou
  5. Wind That Divides The Meadow
  6. Moon Dissolves Into A Spring Dawn (CD only)
  7. Lullaby of Takeda

Ruweh 001

Rema Hasumi         piano, voice(1, 4, and 7)
Todd Neufeld           electric guitar, acoustic guitar (7)
Thomas Morgan      acoustic bass
Billy Mintz                drums
Ben Gerstein            trombone (1, 3, and 6)
Sergio Krakowski    pandeiro (1), adufo, mbira (7)


Recorded December 2013 at Oktaven Audio
Engineered and Mixed by Ryan Streber at Oktaven Audio
Mastered by Luis Bacque



  • "The cumulative effect of this sonic tapestry is both dreamy and slightly nightmarish... An estimable debut and is recommended to free-leaning cultural gate-crashers, especially those interested in traditional Japanese strains."   -Mark Keresman for NYC Jazz Record
  • "Beyond the piano chords setting the scene, Hasumi's voice evokes an overtly dramatic quality: In many ways, her vocal performance is the highlight of the album, with its piercing sense of reality... A remarkably mature musical statement."   - Todd McComb's Jazz Blog
  • Named Top Ten albums of 2015 by Kissa Sakaiki
  • "Utazata is a lyrical album with twists and turns. Abstract rubato ballads that convey music in the making. This does not mean that the music feels unfinished, but rather that Hasumi is able to capture those elusive moments when silence becomes music and music becomes silence." 4 1/2 stars. - Jakob Baekgaard for AllAboutJazz
  •  "The perfect example on how to refer to traditional Gagaku music, bringing it in a completely new space, which consists of : subtle voice of the leader and its unconventional approach to the piano and improvisation." -Lukasz Komla for Nowamuzyka
  • "This is music that is all about peace and quiet. It is music that goes straight to the soul and remains there through all seven songs, and for some time afterwards. Rema's gentle piano and fine vocals make this a brilliant record" -Jan Granlie for Salt Peanuts
  • "Qu'on ne s'y trompe pas : Rema Hasumi conduit un premier disque de main de maître. Un disque troublant dont on ne se lasse pas et qui annonce de beaux lendemains." - Franpi Barriaux for Sun Ship
  • "Utazata is an intimate, delicate, austere and very personal work. In it, Rema Hasumi without grand gestures nor pompous declamations - expresses enormous respect for her history, her culture and its roots." -Sergio Piccirilli for El Intruso

Hasumi has been cultivating her individual musical expression since her first introductions to the piano and jazz in her native Kyushu island of Japan. After moving to New York, studying with piano greats John Hicks and George Cables, and steeping herself in the traditions of local masters, Hasumi began to cultivate a deeper awareness of her own musical heritage. With research of the history of Japanese performing arts, the importance of femininity to this tradition, the unique tonal tensions and constant spiritual pursuance of this ritual music, she created her first recorded musical contribution. Hasumi carefully choose the highly sympathetic cast of Todd Neufeld, Thomas Morgan and Billy Mintz. In addition she enlisted the resonant and unique sound of Ben Gerstein's trombone for the Gagaku piece Azuma Asobi and a series of improvisations. Finally, she added the innovative Brazilian percussionist Sergio Krakowski, also to Azuma Asobi and to Lullaby of Takeda, his sound completing the albums sonic palette. UTAZATA constitutes Rema Hasumi's honoring of her musical world, both ancient past and vivid present.