Jireh Calo Graduates from Berklee

At the end of 2014, Tago Jazz Café in Cubao, Metro Manila, was packed and the audience more attentive than I’d ever seen them. We were all there to watch Jireh Calo in one of her last performances before leaving for Boston to pursue her music studies at the Berklee College of Music, an outstanding music college and performing arts conservatory. Shortly after she arrived in Boston, we had our first interview via Skype, which I posted as “Jireh Calo, a Filipina Musician on Her Way.” (Link) Fast forward to three years later, Jireh is now a Summa Read More

A Family Man in Japan

James and I did this recent interview over Skype when he was in Japan and I was in the Philippines. The photos of cherry blossoms and sports are his.

When I was a kid I was fascinated with Japan and the code of the samurai. Later I did Japanese language at the University of Sheffield in the UK. In 1988, immediately after graduation, I joined the JET program, which was set up by the Japanese Ministry of Education to help students speak better English. I was dispatched to northern Japan, to Tajiri, a conservative, rural town of about 15,000 people, … Read More