Yuto Kanazawa is a Japanese jazz guitarist, composer and a producer based in NYC.
Originally born in Tokyo, Yuto also grew up in Fukushima. Yuto attended Koyo Conservatory Kobe and started playing jazz gigs. He moved to the US in 2007 and later he graduated from Berklee College of Music. At Berklee, he learned under Mick Goodrick, Tim Miller, Hal Crook, Dave Santoro, and Greg Hopkins and Phil Wilson.
Yuto has been always busy producing his own bands and projects, it started during his high school years forming a heavy metal band in Fukushima. Since then he has been leading or co-leading many contemporary jazz projects and producing albums together with his bandmates. His projects made more than 10 albums, and being a composer of the band, he won International Songwriting Competition in Jazz, nominated for the finalist of John Lennon Songwriting Contest. He also played numerous gigs in NYC working with a lot of singers, horn players, funk band, flamenco duo, church band and video game music events.
He has signed with Interrobang Records, Universal Music Group UNXT, also Japanese label Apollo Sounds. Throughout the years, he collaborated with Kurt Elling, Felix Peikli, Mario Castro, Zwe Duma Bell le Pere, Jonathan Pinson, Lonnie Plaxico, Kuni Mikami, Kaleta from Fela Kuti Egypt 80, Lafayette Harris, Jonathan Barber, Myungsup Shin, KyuMin Shim, Hoo Kim, Hironori Suzuki, Takafumi Nikaido, Roberto Giaquinto, Jun Izumi, Andrew McGowan, Ilya Dynov, Yuto Mitomi, Luis Sigüenza, Justus Heher, Takeshi Ohbayashi, Kyoko Oyobe, Mike Mitchell and worked with many other great musicians such as Ed Cherry, Tomoko Ohmura, Takuya Kuroda, Petros Klampanis, Julian Shore, Rogério Boccato, Ron McClure Gregg Errico and Jerry Martini from Sly and Family Stone, Randy Jackson from Zebra, Tony Machine from New York Dolls to name a few.
He has toured internationally in Japan, Korea, US, Mexico and Guatemala. In NYC he has been performing at venues such as BlueNote NYC, BB Kings Blues Club, Fat Cat NYC, Cleopatra’s Needle, Bar Next Door, Red Lion, Cella Dog, and Wild Birds. Currently he has been co-leading the band Woodsiders Collective, hosting a jazz jam session on the last Friday of every month at Claret Wine Bar in Queens.
During the pandemic Yuto also started streaming solo guitar music on Spotify, where his music has been streamed more than 1 million times from all over the world. Since the pandemic, he has been active on social media and sharing his solo guitar and lesson videos for over 46k followers on instagram.
Now he is expanding his horizon working with new afrobeat jazz band FROFAYAH led by Benin artist ex. Fela Kuti band member Kaleta, as well as a live video game music project Infinite Loop featuring Grammy nominated prodigy drummer Mike Mitchell aka Blaque Dynamite.