Praised for their “engaging jazz…with scintillating plays of light and subtle colors” by DownBeat Magazine, Pacific Harp Project’s emergence on the jazz scene has surprised listeners with a unique sonic experience. By incorporating classical harp music into the realms of jazz, pop, and fusion, this groundbreaking group “leads the listener to the conclusion: The harp has been unchained” (AllAboutJazz.com).
PHP was founded in 2014 and released their eponymous debut album in December, 2015 with a sold-out concert. The album won the 2016 Na Hoku Hanohano Award for Instrumental Album of the Year, and received positive reviews from DownBeat Magazine, Jazz Weekly, CD Hotlist, AllAboutJazz.com, The Aquarian Weekly, TheJazzPage.com, Midwest Record, LA Jazz Scene, Honolulu Star Advertiser, and ASX.com. PHP has performed throughout Hawaii at such venues as Blue Note Hawaii, Hawaii Theatre, Atherton Performing Arts Studio, Monarch Room at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel, Pacific Club, Orvis Auditorium, and Medici's Jazz Club.
PHP formed when Megan Bledsoe Ward, a classically-trained harpist, teamed up with acclaimed jazz musicians Noel Okimoto (vibraphone), Todd Yukumoto (saxophones), Jon Hawes (bass), and Allan Ward (drums). Bledsoe Ward wanted to approach jazz harp from a new perspective, leaning on her experience in classical performing, composing, and arranging. CD Hotlist notes: “When she ventures into the very dangerous territory of arranging classical pieces in a jazz style, she comes out the other side not just unscathed but triumphant.” The result is an innovative collaboration in which the musicians delight in working together and captivating audiences at each performance.
To continue our mission of unique innovation and collaboration, our next step is to record a second album. We will reach even more new audiences by including music from other cultures and disciplines. Our sophomore recording will feature collaborations with Kenny Endo (Taiko Master), Allen Won (Saxophonist), and Jamie Jordan (Vocalist). Each musician brings unique expertise to the group, ranging from traditional to contemporary styles, including jazz, classical, pop, and reggae. In our collaborative efforts, we are now producing a style of music which has previously never been recorded or performed.
This album will also be distributed digitally; it will therefore serve communities worldwide. We will use this recording to create educational material that will be available on our website for free. K-12 teachers will be able to access this material for use in the classroom to teach age-appropriate music concepts.
We will spend four days in July recording at Island Sound Studios with internationally-renowned audio engineer Milan Bertosa. Mr. Bertosa will also mix and master the album. We will then perform a CD release concert at Atherton Performing Arts Studio.
Campaign funds will be used for recording studio rental, audio engineering, mixing, mastering, and CD production.
We would be so grateful for your support of this campaign! I'm thrilled about our exciting new music and it would mean the world to me to be able to share it with you.
For more information about Pacific Harp Project, visit us on our website, our Facebook page , or our YouTube page .