by Winston Chua
ALHAMBRA – It was 28 years ago that the HiroshimaInstrumental band was nominated for their first Grammy Award. It was in 2009that they were nominated for their latest Grammy, which happens to be theirsecond. So when the performers of the band came up to receive recognition bythe Alhambra City Council, Councilman Yamauchi said, “Will it be 28 years untilyou are nominated for your next one?”
One of the band members said, “Don’t hold your breath.” Theaccomplished band has the proud distinction of being the only Asian Americanband ever to have been nominated for a Grammy Award. This year’s recognitioncomes for their work on their 17th album, “Legacy.” The first wasfor a track on their 1980 album called “Wings of Change.”
The current members of the band include Dan and JuneKuramoto, Danny Yamamoto, Kimo Cornwell, Dean Cortez and Shoji Kameda. JuneKuramoto is a resident of Alhambra and a master of the koto, receiving all theclassical degrees of koto through the most prestigious schools in Japan whereshe was born.
Although their instrumental musical styles have not changed,the band members found it peculiar that their Grammy nomination had. The fusionjazz band which began in 1974 was first honored for being an R & Binstrumental band. Last year’s nomination for instrumental album of the yearfell under the category of Best Pop Instrumental Album.
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