‘Songs Of Joy’ is the latest album from Japanese jazz pianist YOKO MIWA. Ms Miwa works out of Boston where she’s a regular on that city’s vibrant jazz circuit and she also teaches piano at the city’s prestigious Berklee Music Conservatory.

The 11-track album offers a mix of covers and originals. Amongst the chosen covers are Thelonious Monk’s ‘Think Of One’, Richie Havens’ ‘Freedom’ and Billy Preston’s ‘Songs Of Joy’ for which the collection is named. The original compositions offer a range of moods with the highlights being the jaunty ‘Small Talk’ and the sombre ‘The Lonely Hour’ which perfectly captures the mood of the moment. Indeed, the pianist sees her album as a means to escape from the lockdown routine; a reprieve from the challenges that we all face.

For the recording Ms, Miwa uses her regular collaborators– bassist Will Slater and drummer Scott Goulding, though Brad Barrett takes over bass for the closing ‘Babe I’m Gonna Leave You’, an Anne Bredon tune.

YOKO MIWA: ‘Songs Of Joy’ released 12th February on Ubuntu Music