Buy Your Raffle Tickets!

The Soy and Tofu Festival Raffle is another great opportunity to help support the Nichi Bei Foundation. Here is a partial list of our exciting prizes:

Grand Prize: $500 cash by Nichi Bei Foundation
First Prize: Evening Glow of Yosemite Waterfall Print by Chiura Obata

$100 Apple gift card
and many more!!

Buy them at the Nichi Bei Foundation office, from any committee member or at the festival!

$10 for a book of six tickets, or $2 each.

2018 Soy and Tofu Fest Entertainment Announced

Saturday, June 30, 2018

The Event Center at Saint Mary’s Cathedral

1111 Gough St. at Geary Blvd., San Francisco

 

Food Truck Court (Parking Lot):

All Day: The College Fund Street Band

 

Main Stage in Patron’s Hall

11:15 a.m. .. ……….Tofu Eating Contest

12 p.m. ………..Murasaki Ensemble Trio

1 p.m. …………Tofu Dessert Competition

2 p.m. ………….. Masaru Koga & Friends

3 p.m. …….The College Fund Street Band

4 p.m. ……………LEX the Lexicon Artist

*Schedule as of June 7, subject to change.

 

We are proud to announce an exciting entertainment lineup for the eighth annual Northern California Soy and Tofu Festival, which will be held on Saturday, June 30, 2018, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., at The Event Center at St. Mary’s Cathedral, 1111 Gough Street (at Geary Boulevard) in San Francisco.

Featured live entertainment will include the Murasaki Ensemble Trio, a jazz ensemble led by Oakland, Calif.-based Shirley Kazuyo Muramoto on koto; Masaru Koga and Friends, including band leader Masaru Koga of San Francisco on saxophones, flute and shakuhachi and Akira Tana on drums; The College Fund Street Band, an Elk Grove, Calif.-based family of young musicians ranging from ages 11 to 17 who perform to support their college educations; and LEX the Lexicon Artist, a Taipei-raised and Oakland-based artist who “combines frank storytelling, sharp commentary, and a comically huge ego to deliver her unique perspective of being a weird Asian nerd in America.”


Murasaki Ensemble Trio

The Murasaki sound has the unique ability to combine the Japanese koto with the jazzy sounds of upright bass and acoustic guitar, providing a framework for the trio’s musical explorations. The meeting of old and new, east and west, Shirley Muramoto’s Murasaki Ensemble Trio strives to present a new listening experience that involves interaction among all participants and flows with an intensely global, human quality.

Shirley Kazuyo Muramoto is a koto musician, teacher, music director and filmmaker. Raised in Oakland, Calif., Muramoto’s musical training reflected koto music, violin, voice and guitar. Muramoto went on to expand the creativity in her koto playing. Muramoto has produced four CDs with the Murasaki Ensemble, a world jazz fusion group that she founded, and three contemporary CDs, which feature the koto in solo and duets with shakuhachi, violin, flute and guitar.

For 40-plus years, Muramoto has given private lessons and classes on the koto. Her research concerning Japanese traditional arts in the wartime concentration camps culminated in a documentary film she executive produced, “Hidden Legacy: Japanese Traditional Performing Arts in the WWII Internment Camps.”

Jeff Massanari was born in the small town of Goshen, Ind. Exposed to D.C.’s vibrant music scene, Massanari began playing the guitar at age 13. His love of jazz took him to Boston’s Berklee School of Music. After studying performance and composition, he moved to the San Francisco Bay Area, becoming one of the most in-demand guitarists. Massanari wears many stylistic hats, including straight-ahead jazz, fusion, blues, rock and even has some serious country chops. He often accompanies visiting artists such as Seth MacFarlane, Mark Inouye and the San Francisco Symphony at Davies, and also offers private instruction. Additionally, he teaches at Redwood High.

Bassist Heshima Mark Williams is a San Francisco native who studied under the tutelage of the first African American classical bassist in the Boston Symphony, Ortiz Walton. He has toured with trombonist Julian Priester; trumpeter Eddie Henderson; saxophonists Pharoah Sanders, Sonny Simmons and Idris Ackamoor (as a member of The Pyramids); vibraphonist Bobby Hutcherson; and pianist Jeff Chimenti. He has recorded on albums by Julian Priester and Bobby Hutcherson, as well as Japanese pianist Saya Saito, jazz blues vocalist Lady Memphis and jump blues vocalist Lavay Smith; The Pyramids; saxophonist Robert Stewart; and guitarist Calvin Keys, among others.


Masaru Koga & Friends

Masaru Koga — Saxophones, Flute, Shakuhachi

Multi-wind-instrumentalist Masaru Koga has been an integral part of San Francisco Bay Area’s creative music/jazz scene, known for his cross-cultural musical palette and innovative approach. He has performed, recorded, and traveled with artists such as Anthony Brown, Brenda Wong Aoki, Mark Izu, Fred Ho and Kenny Endo. His recent work includes an annual tour to Japan with Otonowa, a band led by drummer Akira Tana, giving concerts and music workshops for communities recovering from the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. His first CD as a leader, “Flower Fire,” was released in January.

Akira Tana — Jazz Percussion

A self-taught drummer, Akira Tana played semi-professionally while in college. He attended Harvard University where he obtained a degree in East Asian studies/sociology. He then studied at the New England Conservatory of Music. He also played with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and several of the classical music ensembles at the New England Conservatory and at the Berkshire Music Festival at Tanglewood. With the bassist Rufus Reid he formed the band TanaReid. Together with Reid and Kei Akagi, they formed the Asian American Jazz Trio. Comfortably at home accompanying singers and instrumental ballads, Tana is equally in his element playing hard bop. In addition to playing, Tana has also produced and co-produced several albums. Tana also has four recordings as a leader, “Secret Agent Men” and “Moon Over the World,” and “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang,” on Sons of Sound recordings. The most recent project is a series of recordings by his group, “Otonowa,” which features jazz interpretations of Japanese folk and pop melodies that date back centuries. This group has completed five charity tours of the earthquake/tsunami areas of northern Japan that were devastated in March 2011. His most recent recorded release is “JAZZaNOVA,” which features arrangements of Brazilian classics featuring five vocalists with guest appearances by Arturo Sandoval and Branford Marsalis.

John Wiitala — Acoustic Bass

John Wiitala is a freelance bassist, active in the Bay Area jazz scene since the 1980s. He’s played and recorded with pianist Jessica Williams’ trio, Mark Levine’s Latin Tinge, the Bruce Forman Trio, Hal Stein, Noel Jewkes, Bill Bell, Smith Dobson IV, Rob Schneiderman, Wesla Whitfield and Mike Greensill, Ed Reed, Erik Jekabson, Adam Shulman, Patrick Wolff and Randy Porter. He currently teaches at the California Jazz Conservatory and annually at flutist Ali Ryerson’s Master Class at Hidden Valley, the Stanford Jazz Workshop and the Theo Bleckmann/Laurie Antonioli Vocal Intensive.

Ben Stolorow — Piano

Ben Stolorow came to the Bay Area from Los Angeles to attend UC Berkeley in 1994, and after graduating was awarded the Hertz Traveling Fellowship by the music department there to live and study in New York. He has returned to New York regularly to study with Fred Hersch, and since returning to the Bay Area in 2002, has become one of the most in demand jazz pianists in the area, performing at Yoshi’s, The Jazzschool, and the Kuumbwa Jazz Center, at the Healdsburg and SF Jazz Festivals, and has also throughout Japan. Stolorow is also a faculty member of the California Jazz Conservatory.

As Andy Gilbert from the SF Chronicle has put it, “Whether playing his shapely originals, investigating standards or bearing down on modern jazz classics, he interprets every piece with poise and purpose.”

More information: https://www.maskoga.com


The College Fund Street Band

The College Fund Street Band is comprised of Theodore “Mario” Fong (17), Leland Fong (14), and Jennifer Fong (11). They are the children of Ted and Marielle Fong from Elk Grove, Calif., just south of Sacramento.

The kids perform throughout Northern California at street fairs, farmers markets, weddings and corporate events. They have played at the Dodgers Stadium in L.A., AT&T Park in San Francisco, and the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento.

Two other siblings Maxwell and Nina, both in college, sometimes join them. All the money they earn goes into their college fund, hence the band’s name.

Their unique blend of vocals, ukulele, and percussion has attracted a large and loyal following. Their story has appeared in the Sacramento Bee and Sacramento Magazineand was featured on “Good Day Sacramento” and “ABC News 10.”

You can follow The College Fund Street Band on www.facebook.com/thecollegefund or visit their Website at www.cfstreetband.com.


LEX the Lexicon Artist

 

LEX the Lexicon Artist makes high-energy ego rap.

LEX the Lexicon Artist is Taipei-raised, Oakland-based entertainer Alex Sun Liu. Inspired by off-the-wall Internet rappers, LEX combines frank storytelling, sharp commentary, and a comically huge ego to deliver her unique perspective of being a weird Asian nerd in America. LEX tells a variety of irreverent, relatable, and personal stories through rap by invoking hip-hop swagger, nerdy charisma, Internet rapper antics and unrestrained live show energy.

LEX has performed at concerts, festivals, and nerd conventions across the country, including Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle and MAGWest in Santa Clara. She has played shows with national emcees in the nerdcore and alternative hip-hop scenes, including Mega Ran, MC Lars, Sammus  and mc chris. She also works to elevate the Asian Pacific Islander community by organizing and performing at musical events with an API cultural focus, such as the Asian American Music Conference, the Asian Heritage Street Celebration and the United States of Asian America Festival. Most recently, she produced “APICENTER: Making Waves”, an Asian American hip-hop concert sponsored by the Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center of San Francisco, where she performed alongside Ruby Ibarra, Chow Mane and Rudy Kalma.

LEX’s full-length debut album, “Raging Ego,” was released June 6.

More information: https://thelexiconartist.com

Come Discover the Joy of Soy!

Come discover the joy of soy at the eighth annual Northern California Soy and Tofu Festival

A fundraiser for the Nichi Bei Foundation, to support the publication of the Nichi Bei Weekly

• Cooking Demonstrations • Scavenger Hunt (NEW!) • Soy & Tofu Vendors • Soy & Tofu Dessert Competition • Live Performances • Soy Samples • Raffle • Food Trucks • Soy Education

WHEN: Saturday, June 30, 2018, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

WHERE
Event Center at Saint Mary’s Cathedral
1111 Gough St. (at Geary Boulevard)
San Francisco

FREE TOTE to the first 500 in attendance

WATCH VIDEO RETROSPECTIVE OF 2017 FESTIVAL:

WATCH VIDEO INTERVIEWS WITH 2017 VENDORS:

WATCH VIDEO OF 2017 PERFORMERS:

2017 Soy & Tofu Festival Retrospective Video

Thank you to all those who either attended the 2017 Soy & Tofu Festival or helped run it! We could not have held the festival without you, and we hope you had a fun time celebrating the joy of tofu. Here is a retrospective video created by the Nichi Bei Foundation that recounts the fun throughout the day. Thanks for being a part of the Soy & Tofu Festival, and we hope to see you next year!

Entertainment lineup announced!

We are proud to announce an exciting entertainment lineup for the seventh annual Northern California Soy and Tofu Festival, which will be held on Saturday, June 17, 2017, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., at The Event Center at St. Mary’s Cathedral, 1111 Gough Street (at Geary Boulevard) in San Francisco. From breakout national stars like spoken word poetry / hip-hop act G Yamazawa from North Carolina and ukulele virtuoso Aidan James from Hawai‘i, to emerging artists with debut albums like singer-songwriter MJ Lee. and Trace Repeat, an Oakland-based Asian American funk band that defies stereotypes, the day is balanced by outstanding cultural performances such as the iconic San Jose Taiko, Parangal Dance Company (Filipino dance) and Chung Ngai Dance Troupe (lion dancing).

CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION

2017 Festival Entertainment announced!

We are proud to announce an exciting entertainment lineup for the seventh annual Northern California Soy and Tofu Festival, which will be held on Saturday, June 17, 2017, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., at The Event Center at St. Mary’s Cathedral, 1111 Gough Street (at Geary Boulevard) in San Francisco. From breakout national stars like spoken word poetry / hip-hop act G Yamazawa from North Carolina and ukulele virtuoso Aidan James from Hawai‘i, to emerging artists with debut albums like singer-songwriter MJ Lee. and Trace Repeat, an Oakland-based Asian American funk band that defies stereotypes, the day is balanced by outstanding cultural performances such as the iconic San Jose Taiko, Parangal Dance Company (Filipino dance) and Chung Ngai Dance Troupe (lion dancing).

See more about our exciting entertainment lineup below:


G Yamazawa

G Yamazawa is a National Poetry Slam Champion and MC born and raised in Durham, N.C. He is a Kundiman Fellow, Team Backpack Finalist, and has toured more than 150 colleges both domestic and internationally. His work has been featured at the Sundance Film Festival, the Pentagon, TV One’s Verses and Flow, and for the White House Initiative. His debut album “Shouts to Durham” is now available on all major streaming platforms.

WATCH video for “North Cack” 


Aidan James

Aidan James

Aidan James is a 15 year-old, award-winning singer-songwriter, originally from Hawai‘i now living in California. He started playing the ukulele at age 4 and singing came naturally helping him overcome a speech impediment. Although the ukulele is mainly known for Hawaiian music, Aidan has taken it to a different level infusing its sound into pop, rock and contemporary music.

At ages 13 and 14, Aidan was nominated for the prestigious Na Hoku Hanohano award (“Hawaii’s Grammy’s”). His first full-length album, “Echoes,” was released in 2015 and the single from his album, “The Girl on the TV Screen,” took first place in the ISC 2015, Pop/Top 40 category. Aidan made history being the youngest artist ever to be honored for these accolades.

Aidan has toured with Train and recently opened for Michael Bolton. He has performed all over the world including Tahiti and Japan and is currently working on his new album to be released later this year.

Aidan proudly rocks a Kamaka Ukulele.

Social Media:

Website: AidanJamesMusic808.com

Instagram: @ajofficial

Twitter: @aidanjames

Facebook: @AidanJames


Trace Repeat

Trace Repeat is an Oakland-based six-piece soul and funk band. “We do it dirty, and we make it look sexy,” the band says. “We believe in reviving the aesthetics of our Motown forefathers, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, and the tempting Temptations.”

MUSIC:

Trace Repeat – NPR Tiny Desk Contest 2017

http://www.nbcnews.com/widget/video-embed/892496451586

Trace Repeat on NBC News: http://www.nbcnews.com/news/asian-america/trace-repeat-making-unapologetically-sexy-funk-soul-music-n728076

Trace Repeat on Huffpost: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/if-you-dont-feel-trace-repeats-funky-groove-check_us_588abe13e4b0020b224b4375


San Jose Taiko

Since 1973, San Jose Taiko (SJT) has been mesmerizing audiences with the powerful, spellbinding, and propulsive sounds of the taiko. Inspired by traditional Japanese drumming, SJT has broadened this historical art form into a style that joins traditional rhythms with other world and contemporary music, including African, Brazilian, Filipino, Latin, jazz and hip hop, bridging many styles.

San Jose Taiko members perform nationally and internationally in concerts, residencies, and festivals. The group composes original works, and has collaborated in joint concerts with internationally renowned performing artists including local groups, Abhinaya Dance Company of SJ and the Bangerz.

San Jose Taiko leads workshops, and classes for all ages and levels across the country through nationally recognized programs like the highly acclaimed tour residencies and the Junior Taiko program.

More information can be found at taiko.org.


MJ Lee.

MJ Lee. is a heartfelt indie pop/rock musician who crafts songs that are sincere, melodic, and alive. The Bay Area-based singer-songwriter combines honest, poetic lyrics with pop sensibilities and an expansive, imaginative sonic palette. Her sound draws from a wide range of influences, from the melancholic rock of Jimmy Eat World to the lush soundscapes of Sigur Rós frontman Jónsi.

With her debut release, “The Lights Ahead,” Lee. showcases her ability to write memorable anthems and weave them into compelling narratives. The six-song concept album tells the story of her artistic coming-of-age and the transformation of a creative vision into lived reality.

A self-taught songwriter who has played the violin since childhood, Lee. strives to write music that is emotionally resonant and probes the depths and heights of human experience. The period at the end of Lee. signifies the abbreviation of her last name and signifies “the parts of ourselves that don’t show on the surface but that we carry with us nonetheless.”


Parangal Dance Company

Parangal Dance Company

Parangal Dance Company is a Filipino Folk Dance Group based in the San Francisco Bay Area that aspires to inspire. Parangal Dance Company’s mission is to give tribute to Philippine heritage by preserving and promoting ethnic attire, music, and dance through research, workshops and performances. The group aims to serve as a bridge, inspiring and connecting Filipino Americans to their roots to give them a sense of pride and identity, while educating diverse communities to foster awareness and appreciation of Philippine culture.


Chung Ngai Dance Troupe

Chung Ngai Dance Troupe2

Established in 1966, Chung Ngai Dance Troupe is a nonprofit Chinese performing arts organization. Our mission is to promote and preserve Chinese culture in the United States through performing arts. In addition, Chung Ngai offers opportunities for members and volunteers alike to participate in events such as the Chinese New Year parade. In the process, participants learn about Chinese culture and gain experience in performing arts. Chung Ngai is an organization run solely by our members. Since the 1970’s, Chung Ngai has been a staple unit of the Southwest Airlines’ Lunar New Year Parade.