Saratoga In May, Japanese jazz pianist Yuko Kishimoto was scrambling to record her first CD before being forced back to Japan because of visa complications.
In just three weeks this spring, friends, supporters and strangers stepped up to help her raise the $5,000 needed to record the CD through a donation site, kickstarter.com.
Now, the album (“Songbook—Compositions by Yuko Kishimoto”) is complete and she’s holding an album release party on Wednesday, Aug. 31, at 7 p.m. at the First Reformed Church of Schenectady.
“I not only reached the goal but I reached it very quickly. I was very shocked. I was really touched that they were very supportive and I have to say that a lot of contributions came from people I didn’t expect,” said Kishimoto. “People I went to school with that I hadn’t seen in years and a few names I didn’t even recognize.”
The recording process was rushed and she didn’t get to enjoy recording the nine original tracks quite as much as she would have had she not been on the clock, but it was still memorable and satisfying.
“I had to push the whole process forward so it was rather stressful and I really wish I had more time to enjoy the process of it but it was interesting and the musicians that are on the album … they’re the perfect people for what I want to do,” said Kishimoto. “It was really wonderful to have all these guys.”
Local jazz favorites Lee Russo (saxophone), John Menegon (bass), Conor Meehan (drums) and Keith Pray (producer) made Kishimoto’s album come together.
“Keith isn’t playing but he was my producer and he worked so hard to make it a good album. I was happy that I was able to do this project with people that I admire and respect and love working with,” said Kishimoto.