|Halfling Guitar Player|
Shinobu Ito began playing guitar as a small boy in Japan. He went on to attend the Tokai University to study with respected guitar teacher Ikuo Shiozaki. After graduating Mr. Ito went on to play with Yoshiko Kimura, Kohsuke Mine, Seiichi Nakamura, Shigeharu Mukai, Hidefumi Toki, Takao Uematsu, Tete Montreux, Bill Reichenbach, Ronnie Foster, Stanley Banks and many others.
Shortly after he was chosen as one of the most popular guitars in Japan by Swing Journal Mr. Ito moved to New York. Where he played with Joe Jones Jr., Sadik Hakim, John Orr, Tommy Turrentine, Bob Mintzer, Rickey Ford, Kenny Kirkland and Teruo Nakamura and his Rising Sun Band. As well as playing on pianist Tsuyoshi Yamamoto's album P.S. I Love You.
In 1980, Mr. Ito formed and recorded his own first fusion group with T.M. Stevens, Kyle Hicks and Gene Williams. As well as performing with Valery Ponomarev, Lonnie Plaxico, Eddie Henderson, Lonnie Smith, Jesse Davis, Kenny Davis and Jeff Williams, among others. In 1989, Mr. Ito recorded with pianist Chris Defort's 10-piece group which included Mike Formanek, Vincent Herring and Judy Niemack.
Mr. Ito released his first CD Sailing Rolling in 1991 with Tom Harrell, Danny Gottlieb, Gary King, Mark Soskin and Dick Oates. This CD made the charts as one of the top ten best sellers in the contemporary jazz category in Japan.
He has played with countless New York musicians, such as Antonio Hart, Mark Shim, Alvester Garnett, Rodney Green, Lester Bowie, Kenyatta Beasley, Tim Perryman and others. He also co-produced and performed on Eric Wyatt's debut CD God Son in 1997 with Dan Kostelnik, Al Foster, Rufus Reid, Guilherme Franco and Mark Soskin.
Mr. Ito has recorded several albums and has been hailed as a legendary musician in the world of Japanese Jazz-Fusion. He has been teaching at Senzoku Gakuen College of Music Jazz Division in Japan. Mr. Ito currently plays a Thinline Halfling guitar. For more information check out his website; www.shinobuito.com.
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