MSB Formation

The Portland-based Minidoka Swing Band was formed in September 2007, as a tribute to Japanese Americans interned during World War II and to highlight the music popular in the Internment Camps. Affiliation: the Portland Japanese American Citizens League (JACL).

Non-profit 501(c)3

EIN 20-1116631

MSB Tune Pak from ReverbNation

Robbie

We dedicate our band to our founder and creator, Robbie Tsuboi, 1949-2010.  She inspired us to continue being the  Minidoka Swing Band!

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PHOTOS by Bruce Brown, RIP 1932-2015, our #1 "MSB Groupie"  and Rich Iwasaki, Location Photographer ... Thank you!

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THANK YOU to Dream Host for hosting our non-profit web site!

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WEB CONTENT AND DESIGN - Laura Baxter

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A Tribute to Japanese-Americans interned during WWII. Remembering the Big Band Swing music and the entertainment it provided to Internees for those Saturday dances!

"Sharing our Heritage and Culture through Music" to communities around Oregon and beyond 2015-16

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 ** NEXT MSB EVENT: 

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Friday, May 17, 2019

Event: And Then They Came For Me

Minidoka Swing Band Presentation: 6:30pm - 9:00pm

Location:     

Then They Came For Me Exhibit, Open Square

100 Montgomery Street, in the Presidio, San Francisco

Located at Futures Without Violence Building

San Francisco, CA 94129

View Map

Click here for TICKETS

About this Event  

A tribute to Japanese Americans interned during World War II. Remembering the Big Band Swing Music and the entertainment provided to internees at their Saturday night dances. Featuring Oregon Poet Laureate, Lawson Inada.

Light refreshments, Kenshin Sake Bar, and guests are invited to After-Hours tour of exhibit, "Then They Came For Me" Incarceration of Japanese Americans during WWII and the Demise of Civil Liberties. A multi-media exhibition features imagery by noted photographers commissioned by the U.S. government WRA: Dorothea Lange and Clem Albers along with photographs by Ansel Adams, Toyo Miyatake, Paul Kitgaki, Jr. and others.

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Event: National JACL Fundraiser  

Date: Saturday, May 18, 2019

Minidoka Swing Band Presentation: 7:00pm - 9:00pm      

Location:

Beresford Recreation Center

2720 Alameda de las Pulgas

San Mateo, CA 94403

View Map    

TICKETS

About this Event

The world traveling Minidoka Swing Band (MSB) performs in the Pacific Northwest on a regular basis as a remembrance of WWII Japanese American Incarceration. They also did a four city 2015 tour in Japan, educating Japanese citizens about what Japanese Americans from the West coast endured during WWII and giving workshops.

The Minidoka Swing Band tells the story of WWII’s Japanese American Incarceration using the Big Band music of the era, actual home-videos taken from inside the camps, and narration by actual survivors!

MSB uses original poetry by former Oregon Poet Laureate (2006-2010) Lawson Inada as well as personal stories by jazz musicians Larry Nobori and Nola Sugai Bogle (all three of whom are former Incarcerees) and MSB band members whose parents and families were incarcerated.

The Minidoka Swing Band will have three performances as part of the National JACL’s Education fundraiser.

For more information please visit our website : www.minidokaswingband.com

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Sunday, May 19, 2019

Minidoka Swing Band Presentation: 7:00pm - 9:00pm    

Event:

 San Jose JACL and the Mountain View Buddhist Temple are pleased to present:   

The MINIDOKA SWING BAND from Portland, OR with special guest JUN DAIKO

Tickets 

Location:

Mountain View Buddhist Temple Sangha Hall
575 N. Shoreline Blvd.
Mountain View, CA 94043  

About this Event:

The Portland-based Minidoka Swing Band was formed in September 2007, as a tribute to Japanese Americans interned during World War II and to highlight the music popular in the Internment Camps. The Minidoka Swing Band tells the story of WWII’s Japanese American Internment using the Big Band music of the era, actual home-videos taken from inside the camps, and narration by actual survivors. MSB uses original poetry by former Oregon Poet Laureate (2006-2010) Lawson Inada as well as personal stories by jazz musicians Larry Nobori and Nola Sugai Bogle (all three of whom are former Internees) and MSB band members whose parents and families were incarcerated.

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Jun Daiko is the resident taiko group at Mountain View Buddhist Temple. In addition to traditional Japanese music, modern rhythms and other ethnic influences are incorporated into the Jun Daiko repertoire. Jun Daiko supports the taiko program Mountain View Buddhist Temple by teaching classes for youth and adults.

The 2nd half of the May 19th program will feature a collaboration between the Minidoka Swing Band and Jun Daiko.

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Monday, May 20, 2019

Event:  The Minidoka Swing Band Comes to Sacramento

Minidoka Swing Band Presentation: 7:00pm - 9:00pm     

Location:

Buddhist Church of Sacramento

2401 Riverside Blvd

Sacramento, CA  95818

ABOUT:

The world traveling Minidoka Swing Band (MSB) performs in the Pacific Northwest on a regular basis as a remembrance of WWII Japanese American Internment.

Now the band would like to bring its message to Northern California. The program will feature the Story of Internment, narrated by Lawson Inada, who was Oregon Poet Laureate, 2006-2010. It will highlight music of the 1940's set against a backdrop featuring videos and photos from pre- war Nihonmachi (Japan town), life in the camps, to the train ride home from the camps.

The Betsuin Choir will join the band singing songs from the big band era, and there will be opportunity to swing dance to the music of the Minidoka Swing Band. We hope you come to be entertained, reflect upon the time of the internment, and have fun dancing.

Members of the band include director Larry Nobori, whose family lived in Florin when he was born only to be interned in Jerome, AK as an infant. Lead trumpeter Todd and saxophonist Elaine Yuzuriha were married at the Sacramento Buddhist Church 35 years ago after Elaine attended Sunday School at Sacramento from preschool through high school. Rod Nishikawa, one of the directors of the Sacramento Betsuin Choir, is her brother. Todd's parents were interned at Minidoka and Heart Mountain, Elaine's parents (Yutaka and Sakaye Nishikawa, long time members of Sacramento Betsuin) were interned at Tule Lake and Gila River. Nola Sugai Bogle, the band's female vocalist, was interned in Minidoka as a young child, and remembers hearing the swing music in camp.

Tickets:  FREE - Donations accepted

View Upcoming Events tab for complete schedule

DONATE HERE

Shop at the Minidoka Swing Band Store at http://mkt.com/minidokaswingband!  Make a DONATION or purchase an MSB T-shirt or a MSB CD. Donations are tax deductible: Non-profit Portland JACL-EIN 201116631

TESTIMONIALS

An Intimate Dinner with George Takei

On February 19, 2011 the Minidoka Swing Band was honored to play at the ONE reception for "An Intimate Dinner with George Takei" at the Portland Marriott Downtown Waterfront Hotel. I have included a very nice email I received from George regarding the evening:

"Dear Laura,

I was transported to my boyhood imprisoned in two U.S. internment camps at that memorable evening two weekends ago at the reception for the Oregon Nikkei Endowment. Our barrack was just across the way from the mess hall at both camps. So, one of my cherished memories from those years is that of the music that wafted over on Saturday nights from the mess hall after my mother put us to bed.

The music of the 40’s that I heard from the Minidoka Swing Band sounded so familiar and sweet. That was the music of my boyhood. That was the sound that I loved. And it was brought back to me so marvelously that evening in Portland. My appreciation and gratitude goes to those talented musicians for keeping a dulcet part of a dark experience so melodically alive.

My thanks to you and the talented musicians for the great work that you are doing.

Warm regards,

George Takei"
http://www.georgetakei.com/



Minidoka Swing Band

Minidoka Swing Band

Thursday, Aug 29 at 2:08 PM

From: Amy Uyeki ("Searchlight Serenade" artist) 
RE: Saturday night's premier showing of "Seachight Serenade" and dance 
TO: Laura Baxter and Larry Nobori 

Dear Larry and Laura, 

I didn't get a chance on Saturday night to tell you both how wonderfully the band played; you all sounded so tight! All my friends who came really enjoyed it and probably would have gotten out on the dance floor, but there were professionals out there! Really, we just enjoyed watching the dancers and listening to the great music.

You all sounded marvelous and I hope it met your expectations. I was so happy that Oregon Nikkei was able to combine our groups together. Thank you so much for agreeing to play for the event!

Sam took some photos, so I will post them on our website. I am currently in the process of getting ready for an exhibit, so it will take me another week or so, to get them online, but I'll email you when it's up.

Again, thank you so much for the fabulous music. My 91-year-old friend was enthralled and you brought her back to her past in a flash. 

Warmly, Amy

http://www.searchlight-serenade.org/Searchlight_Serenade/Searchlight_Serenade.html


Monday, December 2, 2013

Questions / Comments: (from web site)

Just wanted to say that we went to our first Minidoka Swing Band performance on December 1 in Oregon City. We give the performance an A+!

Wonderful!

Thank you,

Mel & Rose Jetter

Email: Laura@minidokaswingband.com  

Thank you!

MSB Musicians

Larry Nobori - Music Director & Conductor; Lead Alto Sax & Clarinet

(Current band members)

Larry Nobori - Lead Alto Saxophone
Betty Booher- Alto Saxophone
Mike Strassmaier - Tenor Saxophone
John Richardson - Tennor Saxophone
Elaine Yuzuriha - Baritone Saxophone
Todd Yuzuriha - Lead Trumpet
Al Kato - Trumpet
Karl Baxter - Trumpet
Terry Baxter - Trumpet
Eric Olson - Trombone
Todd Ouchida - Trombone
Doug Hamilton - Trombone
Morgan Dickerson - BassTrombone
Lonny Doi - Piano/Keyboard
Larry Bicknese/Paul Singer - Drums
Doug Katagiri - Guitar
Jack Vogel - Double Bass
Nola Sugai Bogle - Vocalist
Shig Sakamoto - Vocalist
Andy Streich - Vocalist 

Robbie Tsuboi - Band Founder and Creator
Marilyn Loy - Co-Founder
Laura Baxter - Band Manager
Yasuyo Kamio Strassmaier - Assistant Manager
Val Katagiri - Assistant
Bruce Brown - Photographer
Swing Dancers: The Unite People Youth Group (JACL Youth Group)

Thank you to our great musician substitutes:
Victor Sharpe - Tenor Sax
John Haftor - Saxophone
JJ Johnston - Trombone/Trumpet
Wynn Kiyama - Piano/Keyboard
Paul Singer - Drums
Bob Burgeni - Bass
Larry Bicknese - Drums
Jim Miller - Alto Sax
Nathanael Ankeny - Saxophone
David Boe - Trumpet
Gray Rains - Trumpet
Robert Pawlowski - Trumpet
George Shinbo - Alto Saxophone  & Vocalist
Gary Irland - Trumpet
Mark Niemann-Ross - Double Bass
Ross Quenzer - Trombone
Bryan Pawlowski - Trombone
Kyle Baxter - Trombone
Michael PowersTrombone
James Powers - Trombone
Tomatsu Tanabe - Piano/Keyboard
Wendy Lin - Vocalist/Sax

Past Musicians:
Kokichi Tagawa - Bass
Joy Yuzuriha - Tenor Saxophone
Rick Homer - Trumpet
Irv Peterson - Trombone
Jo Peterson - Vocalist
David Thompson - Bass
Dan Chinn - Drums
Reggie Anderson - Drums
Dean Qualls - Trombone
Rod Israeli - Bari Sax
Hikaru Okada - Piano/Keyboard
Anna Shida - Clarinet
Ken Yuzuriha - Trombone
Daniel Griffith - Alto Sax
Toyomi Yoshida - Tenor Saxophone/Piano
Eric Hiro Jordon - Tenor Saxophone
Yuki Inoue - Trombone
Ron Hylland - Trombone, Tenor Sax & Trumpet
Sammy Yoshida - drummer/2nd trumpet
Jay Lyman - Percussion
Rev. David Weekly - 3rd trumpet/ Pastor of Epworth Methodist Church




Click Below to listen:

MSB Tune Pak from ReverbNation