Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians

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Pao, Eugene

Pao, Eugene, guitarist; b. Hong Kong, 12 October 1959. His father, Cohon Pao, played classical violin when he was younger. His mom, Dora Pao, played a little bit of piano when she was younger. Both still healthy and living.

Simply put, Eugene Pao is Hong Kong's most publicly recognized jazz  musician and his name is synonymous with jazz in our city.  Such  reputation cannot be more deserving as Eugene has been at the  vanguard of promoting jazz in the territory through his performances  and recordings over the last twenty plus years.

Hong Kong first discovered its own guitar hero in the mid 1980's when  Eugene returned from studies in the U.S. and began playing around  town.  Recognition came early from leading jazz musicians.  Some of  his early recordings featured such legends as bassist Eddie Gomez,  blues great Jimmy Witherspoon and saxophonist Michael Brecker.

He made his first solo album in 1996 called "By The Company You Keep"  with a stellar cast of Jazz greats, drummer Jack DeJonette bassist  John Patitucci and Michael Brecker again on saxophone.  In 1999,  Eugene released "This Window" another outstanding album, on which he  penned half of the tunes, with the support of Jack DeJohnette,  bassist Marc Johnson and pianist Joey Calderazzo. In 2001, Eugene  traveled to Europe and recorded a set of beautiful, lyrical standards  with the Mads Vinding Trio from Denmark called "Pao".   In 2004 he  released "Naked Time", a fiery 1994 recording with Brecker, James  Genus, Dan Gottlieb, Jeff Andrews, Manolo Badrena and compatriot Ted  Lo.  Getting the old music out to his appreciative following left him  free to focus on the future.  In 2005, Eugene Pao Project was  released, a multi-media DVD concept filmed without an audience at  Hong Kong's Academy For The Performing Arts, featuring top Asian  musicians and mixed in 5.1 surround sound.   In 2006, Eugene was  invited to form the "Asian Super Guitar Project" with two other  guitarists, Kazumi Watanabe from Japan and Jack Lee from Korea, a  guitar trio unique in its genre gathering and mixing differences of  cultures, influences, politics and religion from three Asian  countries, Japan, China and Korea. They got together in the summer of  2006 and made a record entitled " Guitar Sam Guk Ji".

Jazz greats with whom he has performed on stage over the years  include Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, McCoy Tyner, Terumasa Hino,  Freddie Hubbard, Bob Berg , Jackie McClean, Joe Pass, Ulf Wakenius,   Ernie Watts, Martin Taylor,  James Moody, Bill Bruford, Jeff Berlin,  Stu Hamm, Bobby McFerrin, Russell Ferrante, Eric Marienthal  and many  more.

Over the last two decades, Eugene Pao has truly established himself  as Hong Kong's premier jazz guitarist.   He continues to travel the  world for performances at international jazz festivals, concert halls  and jazz clubs, and to take part in select recording projects.

Recordings:
Sketches (with Dave Packer & Ric Halstead) (1985);
Chance Encounter (with Eddie Gomez) (1986);
Chance Encounter Live (with Ric Halstead) (1988);
El Jammo (with Kenny Wheeler) (1988);
Spoon Meets Pao (with Jimmy Witherspoon) (1990);
Outlet (with Michael Brecker) (1990);
By the Company You Keep (with John Patitucci, Jack DeJohnette and Michael Brecker) (1996);
Naked Time (with Michael Brecker, Dan Gottlieb, James Genus) (1994); A Minor Change (with Hong Kong Jazz Quartet) (1997);
This Window (with Jack DeJohnette, Marc Johnson and Joey Calderazzo (1999);
Pao (with Mads Vinding) (2001);
Eugene Pao Project (with Tamaya Honda, Steve Thorton) (2005);
Asian Super Guitar Project (with Kazumi Watanabe and Jack Lee) (2006)

Websites:
http://www.eugenepao.com/

Contact information:
email: disso@hkstar.com
address: 3/F B Flat 1, South Bay Garden, 33. South Bay Close, Repulse Bay, Hong Komg
telephone: (852) 2592-8306
Fax: (852) 2592-8326
Mobile: (852) 9020-4182
Additional Web Page: http://myspace.com/eugenepao

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