Wednesday, September 08, 2010

70's NCR II - The Maui Edition, change of date?

Mitch Hazama, Asian Blend leader and 70's NCR II promoter has found out that the original November 6 date for this event clashes with 3 Dog Night's 2010 appearance on Maui. Because of this Mitch is tentatively looking to move the event to Saturday, November 13, 2010 instead. We'll know for sure in a bit, but in the meantime here's something forwarded to me by Greenwood's leader Robin Kimura from Mitch to his Asian Blend members and a few others. It's a good read, interesting to hear of sacrifices made for the love of music. Cool story Mitch!!! Thanks for sharing!!!

Remember the Acoustic 360 bass amp and Rogers drums? Can't believe Mark used a Acoustic amp with 6 10" speakers? The Fender Rhodes suitcase 73 and D-6 clavinet with the M-3 and Leslie ( not in photo ) to the left of me. Wow............alot of memories! and backaches from breaking down.The photo that Jay forwarded is 36 years old............Jay looks like he's still in high school ( which he was when we first hired him. ) We actually need an all Asian Blend reunion with the 100+ musicians who played with the band over the past 39 years. That would be something! It would have to be on Oahu in 2011 to mark 40 years. With me being 75 lbs overweight, I guess I don't want to say "we should have gotten together."

It's been 18 years now since I first started the CD project and am so close to finishing. I'm grateful to all who have helped and to the friends who have invested time and money over the years to get this project finished. I'm hoping to finally complete it and stop changing the songs and wasting studio time and mixing time which equates to $$$ each time I'm not satisfied with the final mix of the song. I know by now you all know how I am about getting it "perfect" but when it comes to recording, time is money so I hope to finally get the final product out soon. Just can't seem to get away from it all and focus on writing the final two songs to complete it.

Asian Blend was first formed in the Athletic Dormitory @ UH in the summer of 1971 while playing baseball for Les Murakami's Rainbows. I met Wes Stockstill who was on the UH tennis team and ended up turning down a $25,000 signing bonus and an annual $ 65,000 salary with the Tokyo Giants in 1972 to play music. We later hooked up with Greenwood in late 1974 and rented a rehearsal studio together ( on the second about carrying! ) That gave us a chance to rehearse Gordon in and hit the nightclub circuit. The rest is history.

Jay continues to make all of us proud by playing fulltime and now really showing his true talent with the newly formed "SLAM" band featuring Dave Choy and Mike Kennedy on drums. What a band!! If you have a chance. stop by STELLA BLUES on Wednesdays from 7:00 p.m till 10:00 p.m. and you won't regret it. We were also fortunate to have Gilbert Emata elevate the band to a different level with his unbelievable playing ( how can one person have 4 hands and three brains? )

Greenwood is coming to Maui on November 6 to play with us and it's sort of a mini-reunion to play together again like we did @ the Queen Kapiolani Akala Showroom back in the 70's. Looking back 39 years later, it was the right choice to form the band as I met so many great musicians and good friends in the process. Money is not everything and even though Asian Blend struggled financially over the years, hiring top talent to keep the bands reputation up was a priority for me. Now almost 40 years later, we have survived 4 decades in a fragile and volatile business where "you are only as good as your next gig."

That being said, the summer of 2011 marks 40 years and we should finally all make it a point to have a "true reunion" where we play music one night but have a gathering the next day to sit with each other and catch up. Don't want to be "last minute" like I'm famous for but a joint get together in Oahu would really be nice. We need a committee to assist. Any volunteers?
We need someone to help us find all the former members.........maybe Facebook? Will keep all posted when the date is set.




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