By P.C. Staff

Versatile pop/soul/contemporary jazz saxophonist Michael Paulo (pictured) is bringing the first annual Asian Heritage Jazz Festival, presented by Apaulo Music Prods., on June 20 to the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center in Los Angeles.

“With my lifelong passion for jazz, I want to host an event unlike any other that focuses on the Asian culture embracing an American art form, jazz,” said Paulo, who has also produced the Temecula Wine and Music Festival for the past 10 years. “As America is a melting pot of cultures, it is important in the assimilation of those cultures to embrace things that are uniquely American. It is through this that we can become a part of the mainstream culture.

Also, in most instances, Asian Americans aren’t readily associated with jazz. The festival aims to change that perception
by featuring as many of the best Asian jazz performers here that we can assemble. We will have the biggest lineup of Asian jazz artists ever in the U.S.”

Featured artists include Ming Freeman (keyboards), David Inamine (bass), Danny Jung (saxophone), Jeff Kashiwa (saxophone), June Kuramoto (koto), Rene Paulo (piano), Benny Rietveld, (bass), Fred Schreuders (guitar), Kemeya Seward (vocalist) and Pauline
Wilson (vocalist).

In addition, the festival will provide a platform to promote and nurture younger artists who deserve wider recognition but have been unable to break into the mainstream world.

“We can also generate opportunities for young up-and-coming talent to gain exposure, play and be inspired by the veteran performers who have had international success. This is what makes us  different than the many other jazz festival events in Southern California. I am committed to its success and very excited to launch this event,” said Paulo.

The festival will be held at the JACCC’s outdoor main stage. For additional information, email and to purchase  tickets, visit