J Jazz Album Launch / Tokyo Jazz Joints Photography Exhibition

Date Friday, 23 February 17:00
Location The BBE Store
City London

The Institute of Light and BBE Records present a special event marking the release of ‘J Jazz: deep jazz from Japan 1969-1984’ and an exhibition of the sleeve art photographs by Philip Arneill.

Taken from the Tokyojazzjoints project, established by Philip and his friend, writer and broadcaster James Catchpole, these photos capture the unique Japanese phenomenon of the jazz kissaten, the tiny jazz bars where fans gather to listen to their favourite jazz records on purpose built high end sound systems. These bars are often hidden, insular worlds where time ceases to exist, removed from the speed and bustle of Japanese urban life. Since 2015, Philip has toured over 100 of these fascinating places and taken photographs of the spaces, often dimly lit, replete with walls of vinyl, imposing speakers and tobacco stained posters and flyers adorning the walls. Come and take a peek into this mysterious world.

The ‘J Jazz’ compilation from BBE uncovers some of the most sought after and rare material from a crucial period in the development of the post-war jazz scene in Japan. Spanning deep spiritual jazz to hard dance floor fusion, none of the tracks featured on ‘J Jazz’ have ever received an official release outside Japan before. The albums the tracks are taken from are extremely hard to find and often fetch huge sums on the collector’s circuit. Compiled by Tony Higgins and Mike Peden, both long-time collectors of Japanese jazz, ’J Jazz’ brings together the very best in modern jazz from Japan, recorded during a period of musical and cultural transition that saw composers and musicians not only assert a new artistic identity but also create a lasting musical legacy. Both Tony and Mike will be playing a carefully selected music choice for the event for the deepest reaches of their collections.

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