The Jen Oikawa Trio | Escape Plan (To Canada)

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Jazz: Contemporary Jazz Jazz: Piano Jazz Moods: Instrumental
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Escape Plan (To Canada)

by The Jen Oikawa Trio

This album is a six-song set of contemporary jazz originals that all relate to my story of creating a life in L.A: featuring piano, drums, upright bass and trumpet.
Genre: Jazz: Contemporary Jazz
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. More Than a Fairytale
5:07 $0.99
2. Mysterious Melancholy
4:44 $0.99
3. Escape Plan (To Canada)
4:29 $0.99
4. A. Espionage
5:52 $0.99
5. Chrysalis
7:58 $0.99
6. Abundance
6:47 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
This album is a six-song set of original jazz compositions that all relate to my story of creating a life here in Los Angeles after moving from my hometown of Calgary. A story about a Canadian girl starting from scratch to establish community and make connections, in a new place with huge hidden differences from the culture she grew up in, difficult to define or even recognize but definitely felt. Amidst navigating all of this, she was being introduced to new possibilities, and discovering uncovered musical ambitions that were dying for her to find the courage to pursue them. It’s a story about the overwhelming process of forging a new path.

I’m Jen Oikawa: a pianist, jazz artist, composer, arranger, piano teacher, pie maker, french-pressed-coffee-drinking freelance-musician. This will be the trio's second album. Along with our co-producer, this team is made up of multi-faceted, multi-talented, professional musician-artists: Brandon Shaw on bass, Ryan Shaw on Drums, Gino Muñoz guest trumpet player, and Gary Lee the co-producer!

I’m a musician and the way that I share my story is through my music. It is my prayer that through this album you would be encouraged, uplifted and inspired to pursue your own calling, assured that you are not alone, that God is with you.

Notes about the tracks:
1. More Than a Fairytale (feat. Gino Muñoz on Trumpet)
Before moving to Los Angeles, it seemed like an unreal, fairytale type of place, so removed from “real” life. This track relates the experience of a life in Los Angeles transforming from a fairytale thought to a reality.

2. Mysterious Melancholy
Figuring out how to connect in a new city, on my own, I grappled with feelings of isolation and loneliness. The spiraling movement of this track reflects the spiraling thoughts that can descend down to depression. However, the uplifting major key ending is a reminder that the darkness ends and there is always hope.

3. Escape Plan (to Canada) (feat. Gino Muñoz on Trumpet)
When discouragement hit I would imagine escaping back to Canada and giving up on creating a life in Los Angeles. This song is a playful expression of those plans.

4. a) Espionage
Originally I had planned to move to Los Angeles for only 3 years, but in the third year I realized I had more to pursue here and wanted to stay. When applying for my green card, the application form specifically asked a series of questions like this: When in the U.S. do you plan to be involved in . . .

5. Chrysalis (feat. Gino Muñoz on Flugelhorn)
At many moments it seemed like nothing was happening or moving forward. It took a long time before I discovered that an incredible transformation had been occurring beneath the surface of my life.

6. Abundance
Inspired by Psalm 66.12, this song expresses the moment when I finally felt connected, at home, and thriving in Los Angeles.

Piano: Jen Oikawa
Bass: Brandon Shaw (
Drums: Ryan Shaw (
Trumpet and Flugelhorn: Gino Muñoz

Produced by Jen Oikawa and Gary Lee (
Recorded by Ebiut Cervantes
Recorded at Firehouse Recording Studios, Studio A, Pasadena, CA, February 4 and March 22, 2016
Mixed and Mastered by Ebiut Cervantes at eStudio, Glendora, CA

All songs composed by Jen Oikawa
To learn more about the background story of the songs and the album visit

©℗ 2016 Jennifer Oikawa. All Right Reserved. Unauthorized duplication is a violation of applicable laws.

More about the musicians:
Upright Bassist: Brandon Shaw: His tone, his groove, his musical smarts, his jazz sensibilities and his beard. These are but a few of the strengths of bassist, Brandon Shaw. He’s been the bass player for the Jen Oikawa Trio for several years and played on our debut album: Project One. I first met Brandon on a wedding gig. A strong musician with a fun demeanor, he soon became my first call bassist! Since that time his pursuits as a musician have expanded way beyond the scope of this short, paragraphical introduction to the success that is Brandon Shaw.

Jazz Drummer: Ryan Shaw: Yes. That’s right. Brothers. A bass-drums-brother-brother duo. Ryan is the newest and youngest member of the trio. He stepped in when we needed a drummer for the release concert of our debut album in 2013. Only 18 at the time, we gave him a copy of the album to prepare for the show and he came into rehearsal knowing our tunes better than we did! His chops and his musical skill are well beyond his years and when we found ourselves in need of a new drummer, Ryan was at the top of the list. Currently immersing himself in jazz studies at USC, he is already a sought-after professional drummer.

Co-Producer: Gary Lee: His experience and expertise in recording and album production is invaluable to this project! A quick read of his bio ( and you’ll see what I mean. We met 13 years ago in the rhythm section of the APU Jazz Ensemble. At first I mistook him to be just your average young punk guitar player. I was so wrong. I mean, REALLY wrong. He quickly became one of my favorite people. A guitarist. An ambitious musician. Immensely talented. Dedicated to his craft.

This album also features Gino Muñoz on trumpet and flugelhorn for 3 tracks on this album. His beautiful tone and musical energy bring life and heart to the melodies he plays and creates.



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