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(Alto Saxophone,Sopranino Saxophone, Flute)
Born in Tochigi Prefecture in 1933. Moved to Tokyo after graduating high-school. In 1962, moved to Boston to study at Berklee College of Music after participating in many band sessions as a alto saxophone player. Representing as a top Japanese musician, also know as a talented photographer, publishes six picture books. As an Executive Producer of the Japanese Government Exhibition Project for the 2005 in Japan, advocates the message "World Peace" through music.
1933 1933 Born in Utsunomiya city, Tochigi prefecture
1948 Inspired by the film "Birth of the Blues", began to play the clarinet in high school
1951 1951 Began to play the alto sax, after moving to Tokyo at the age of 18
1953 - 1960 1953- Made a name for himself in the Jazz scene, participating in Toshiko Akiyoshi's cozy quartet and various other sessions
1961 Released first leader album "Sadao Watanabe"
1962 1962 Moved to Boston to study at the Berklee college of Music and while abroad, he enriched his musical style by performing with big acts such as Chico Hamilton and Gary McFarland. Become activated in Brazilian music
1965 1965 Returned to Japan, with the start of the energetic music career, instructs the Jazz theory to many Japanese Jazz Musicians
1967 Releases "Jazz&Bossa", created the big "Bossa Nova"boom in Japan
1968 - 1971 1968- Appearance at the Newport Jazz Festival marked the beginning of international career. Starts producing albums with musicians abroad
1972 First trip to Kenya. Starts a FM program "Sadao Watanabe ~ My Dear Life" became a popular long running radio program of 19 years. Challenges Mozart's "Divertimento" by saxophone, performance with Kyoto Symphony Orchestra
1973 - 1977 1973- Produces albums and holds concerts from the inspiration of African rhythm
1973 December : Osaka Culture Award
1977 January : The 31st Arts Festival Grand Prize
The 2nd Nanri Fumio Award
1978年 - 1982 The title hit "California Shower", recorded in L.A. attracts a wide range of music fans. "Nabesada" boom arises. After performing at the "Budokan Recital"which became the greatest Japanese Jazz event in 1980, with many hit titles, embarked on his first America tour
1983年 - 1996 1983- Aiming at the world advancement in full scale after moving to record company label WEA. During that time, many of the albums marked on the top ranking chart on the US magazines. His name become known world-widely, holds concerts actively abroad.In 1995, starts holding workshops in Utsunomiya prefecture(his birth place) using Brazil percussion instrument to the Junior high students
1984 April : The 1st Honors Award of Utsunomiya City
1986 February : The 36th Ministry of Education Arts Award
1988 ロサンゼルス名誉市民賞 受賞 May : The City of Los Angeles Citizenship Citation
1994 August : Ministry of Foreign Affairs Commendation
1995 January : Cultural Honors Award of Tokyo
September : Berklee College of Music Honorary Decorate Degree
November : Imperial Purple Ribbon Medal
1997 - 2000 First trip to Tibet. In 1999, releases 60th leader album. Holds a"Bach Organ Special Concert" performance with pianist Michiko Kobayashi
2001 Marked the 50th anniversary as a musician , to celebrate the momentous occasion, toured successfully in Japan and LA. Chosen as the Executive Producer of the Japanese Government Exhibition project for the EXPO 2005
2002 - 2004 From the start of holding workshops for children in 1995, become active in performing in series of charity concerts at "Kids for Banbini" in Italy and "Make a wish in Guam" .In 2004, composed a song entitled "Share the World"
2002 June : The 1st Cultural Honors Award of Tochigi Prefecture
2003 モンブラン国際文化賞2003 受賞 October : MontBlanc International Culture Prize
2005 Actively involves in his EXPO projects, which opened in March. Culminated the events "Japan Day & Japan Week" in June and "Sadao Watanabe EARTH SOUND" in August, in which he performed with youth percussion and chorus groups who gathered from 5 continents in an extraordinary cross-cultural blend of rhythm & song. On behalf of his long career as a musician, receives an award "The Order of Rising Sun", at his ceremony party. Donates charity to "Care International Japan"
2005 平成17年度秋 旭日小綬章 受章 November : The Order of Rising Sun
2006 Released two live albums "One For You /Sadao&Bona Live" and "Sadao&Charlie Again".After the interval of three years, toured sucessfully in the U.S. First visit to Myanmar, performed together with the local kids on stage. Performed with Hank Jones at the annual Christmas Tour "Sadao With The Great Jazz Trio"in three cities in Japan