Nao Yoshioka (Japan)
Since her single ‘Make the Change’ was released in 2012, Nao Yoshioka has received kudos from a number of soul music veterans including Grammy-winning singer/songwriter Gordon Chambers, the “King of Indie Soul”, Eric Roberson, and songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist Khari Mateen (Jill Scott, The Roots). In July 2015 alone, her debut album ‘The Light’ was released in North America, in Japan she headlined a sold-out Blue Note Tokyo, performed at the hugely popular Summer Sonic festival, and guested with bassist Nathan East at Billboard Live Tokyo.
Nao has performed at venues around the world including Blue Note New York, the legendary Birchmere where she has opened for both José James and Rahsaan Patterson, Club Dauphine in The Netherlands where she shared the stage with saxophonist Candy Dulfer, Hideaway, South London’s award-winning live music venue, and the Highline Ballroom in New York where she opened for Les Nubians. In the summer of 2016 Nao performed at her first major US music festival, Capital Jazz Fest, one of the largest festivals in the United States along side legends like Lalah Hathaway and Marcus Miller. In 2017, Nao toured Japan, The Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and also performed during the 11th Annual Capital Jazz SuperCruise sailing from New York to Bermuda.
Determined to increase her international presence, in 2018 Nao decided to move her base from Japan to the US, and successfully attaining a hard-earned artist visa, in order to further her career in a new and exciting environment. Confident that her voice is resonating with audiences around the world, it is Nao’s ambition to someday be nominated for a Grammy which is entirely possible. Her first step was re-releasing and promoting her 3rd album ‘The Truth’ in the homeland of soul music which gained her auspicious achievements; #32 on the Billboard Urban Adult Contemporary chart which is remarkable for a Japanese artist, an album review by the prestigious Rolling Stone Magazine who wrote, “Nao Yoshioka’s ‘The Truth’ Is Impeccable Neo-Soul”, a live performance on SiriusXM, and the Best International Artist award from the UK’s BRIGHT STAR AWARDS. Her dream of gaining recognition around the world is slowly beginning to be unveiled... how this visionary’s newest album is received is in the hands (and ears) of a worldwide audience.