Kazumi Watanabe

jebbuddajebbudda Posts: 5,030
Anybody heard of this guy ?

Years ago GP mag called him " The Japanese Eddie Van Halen " . That got my attention . He is VERY prolific and has released a mulitude of instrumental CDs mainly in the funky fusion vien . One thing for sure....this cat has his own style and gets some serious creativity going along with jawdropping technique covering all the bases.

His last few CDs are jazzy ( Three additions of Mo Bop ) but there is no denying the rock element .


  • BaddstuffBaddstuff Posts: 1,305
    oh yeah! Been into his stuff for a long time now. Quite prolific. I finally saw him October of last year,
    Here are some of my shots- 

  • AgrippaAgrippa Posts: 5,930
    Great pics, as usual.

    I too remember GP magazine hyping Kazumi. I never came across one of his records, so I kinda forgot about him.
    Are checking youtube right now.

    Obviously a great guitarist.

  • JoebuddhaJoebuddha Posts: 2,121
    I've never really heard his recorded music, but he used to come into 48th street Custom whenever he was in town.
    He was friends with my boss who was also Japanese and he was always a very nice guy, and used to play his ass off in the store.
  • I used to hear some cassetes recoreded form a freak jazzy friend. It's not jazz, not funk... He plays very well, for sure.
  • More the Japanese Eric Johnson than the Japanese Van Halen (Akira is), but great nonetheless. His style is very special indeed!
  • There's a name I hadn't though of in a long while.  He got some press in the guitar 'zines back in the early 80's or so, and I had one of his albums (one of the Mobo series). I worked in a record store back then, and only ever saw one of his records (the one I bought).  
    I remember it as mostly clean-toned, melodically quirky (not quite zappa-esque, but pointing that direction), not nearly as 'out there' as Holdsworth (who I was big into at the time) or as radio-friendly as Stanley Jordan (who was the poster boy for Jazz then).  

    He definitely plays some hip shit, has his own thing going on, but is no VH!  :roll:

    Been listening to him this morning w/Bruford and Jeff Berlin....cool stuff.  

    Solo starts at 3:18 (and keeps going), includes some some wicked octave-y stuff, legato-y shred, odd note choices, mutant sweep-picking, crazy sliding bits plus some shreddy rock and blues-y phrasing...all delivered in an off the cuff, playful manner.  
    Maybe he does have a bit of EVH going for him?  He sure looks to be having fun!

    A bit more from the same show. This one is more 'artsy' than the first...(avoid if you hate drum synth intros!  :ahhh: ):

    Hang on, same song here without the drum solo, much more radio-friendly:

    I like Kazumi, thanks Jeb for jarring the memories!  :clap:

    PS: and great pics as usual, Baddstuff!

  • SnoogansSnoogans Posts: 1,670
    I remember a Guitar Player magazine having a flexidisc of a KW tune. That was waaay back in the "Glory days" of guitar mags!
  • jebbuddajebbudda Posts: 5,030
    He recorded a bunch with a group called W.I.N.S. ( the first intial of each member ) and really gets down on some of it . :shock:

    Lots of EVH influenced guitar playing on those albums...especially the first one . Can't find any Utubes . :sad:
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