"Picks of the Week" from Don Heckman with International Review of Music

- Oct. 15 û 17. (Fri. û Sun.) The Asian American Music Festival. The music of the Pacific rim provides a bountiful collection of sounds and rhythms for this creatively eclectic, far-ranging festival. FridayÆs program features hip-hopster Kero One, Dana LeongÆs Milk & JadeÆs electronica sounds, and Japanese rapper Shing02. The inimitable Leroy Downs is the host. Saturday afternoonÆs bill includes two extraordinary pianists, Jon Jang and Gary Fukushima. The Pan Asian Arkestra and the Taiko Project will also present the world premiere of JangÆs Concerto For Jazz Orchestra and Taiko. Saturday night showcases the amazing ukulele playing of Jake Shimabukuro and the quartet of Abe Lagrimas, Jr. and Noel Okimoto. Sunday afternoon features the Japanese-American pop-jazz singer Ernie Meyer and the hip-hop electronica of the Shanghai Restoration Project. And the festival soars to a close on Sunday night when a pair of extraordinary jazz vocalists take center stage: Charmaine Clamor and Sachel Vasandani, with the amiable Bubba Jackson hosting. The Asian American Music Festival. The Japanese American National Museum. (213) 545-1330.

by Don Heckman, for International Review of Music, OCTOBER 14, 2010