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Singer, painter team up for concert at Cotonoha

Date Posted: 2011-02-25

The music wafting through the air at Cotonoha Artspace and Café March 1st will literally have a visually element to it with the “Painted Melodies” concert.

American singer-songwriter Matthew Merrick will perform selections of original works covering a bit of everything from folk to jazz, along with several popular jazz standards. He’s teaming with artist Saori Kanda for the event. The musical entourage includes Kazuya ‘Gacha’ Uechi on bass, and Sebastian Kapstein on drums.

The Yamaguchi Prefecture-born Saori Kanda will interpret Merrick’s works by contributing a visual dimension, the painted melodies. She grew up in Iraq and the United Arab Emirates before graduating the Department of Visual Communication Design in the College of Art and Design at Musashino Art University. “The beauty of the world, through my work,” she says, “connects the elements of skin, earth, paper and clothing with the forms of music, movies, dancing and light. I can truly say ‘I love to paint’”.

Merrick, who describes his work as “my songs are often inspired by nature, seasons and times of day: the tranquil, reflective mood of a winter afternoon, the melancholy of twilight, the boundless promise of a bright sunlit morning”, has made his home in Okinawa since graduating Haverford College in 2003. He works as a Coordinator of International Relations and elementary school assistant English teacher, using his guitar and music to make English education “more fun and memorable”.

“My goal is to make each show an expression of joy,” he says, “creating a relaxing mood with clear tones of voice and guitar, while at the same time energizing the audience with lively rhythms, humor and a positive message.” Merrick and Kanda perform at 8 p.m. Tuesday, March 1st. Entry to Cotonoha Artspace & Café is ¥1,500 in advance, or ¥2,000 at the door.

The entry fee does not include the costs of food or drinks. Tickets are now on sale at http://shop.cotonoha.com/?pid= Saori 27043435.

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