Tokyo born Keiko Matsui devotes her life to her favorite instrument, the piano. Since her fifth birthday she loves and performs this piece of equipment. Classified as New Age or Smooth Jazz musician, she always expands her work to other genres. Blending Eastern and Western influences she has found her own style presented in numerous solo albums.

Her newest album The Road ... was released on Shanachie Entertainment in January, 2011.“Keiko Matsui is beyond category,” states Danny Weiss, VP of Jazz A&R for Shanachie Entertainment. “She is a great jazz player, of course, but her music has such strong classical, world and new age influences that the result is truly unique. But it is in her compositions that Keiko’s genius outshines all others – her amazing melodies are simply breathtaking!”

Keiko's spiritual approach to her music reflects in Secret Pond. "This song is about where we all begin our journey in this life." A simple phrase expands to a lyrical melody, a unpretentious bulb is flourishing into full blossom.

Falcon's Wing starts in full flow featuring Cameroonian bassist, composer, and vocalist Richard Bona, who decorates the song with an impressive bass line and his impeccable vocals. On Nguea Wonja Keiko renews the connection to the African contemporary jazz scene she already intensified on Moyo. Keiko composed the African flavored song together with Richard Bona, who is a guarantor for authenticity and heritage.

Bohemian Concerto is inspired by an Eastern European tour Keiko absolved in October 2010. Although the tour went through Ukraine, Russia, and Azerbaijan the music borrows from Balkanized elements and Frank Marocco (accordion) and Alberto de Almar (flamenco guitar) infiltrate some Gypsy savor. Embrace & Surrender is a melodious and heartfelt New Age instrumental. While Keiko paints the melody line in powerful strokes on piano, James Hara adds some folky finger picks on his guitar.

The contemplative Awakening is featuring saxophonist Kirk Whalum. Keiko is offering her music as a prayer sharing Kirk's attitude about music and spirituality. Touching Peace is the perfect title for Keiko's piano mastery written by Richard Bona. Affecting with soft piano keys. Affirmation is the second collaboration between Keiko and Kirk Whalum. An attentive listener will remark that Keiko's interpretation is influenced by Bob James' piano style. Both have often performed together on the 4 Hand tour. Final piece The Road… presents Jackiem Joyner, who is often internationally touring with Keiko. Jackiem's unprecedented expressiveness on sax superbly competes with Keiko's piano wizardry.

Keiko Matsui's new work of genius The Road ... is a musical symbolization of her personality exploiting a number of facets. Less spectacular glamour but a huge portion of vibrant intimacy.





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Album Information

Title: The Road…
Artist: Keiko Matsui
Year: 2011
Length: 0:44:48
Genre: General Jazz
Label: Shanachie


01 Secret Pond [5:01]
02 Falcon's Wing [4:47]
03 Nguea Wonja [4:06]
04 Bohemian Concerto [5:21]
05 Embrace & Surrender [4:46]
06 Awakening (feat. Kirk Whalum) [5:30]
07 Touching Peace [4:47]
08 Affirmation (feat. Kirk Whalum) [6:01]
09 The Road… (feat. Jackiem Joyner) [4:29]