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Yoko Kikuchi, 2006 June 26
|Born||September 1, 1981|
|Origin||New York City, New York, U.S.|
|Labels||Recommended If You Like Records|
Yoko Kikuchi (born September 1, 1981), aka Yoko Oji Kikuchi or Yoko OK, is a fourth-generation American artist, singer/songwriter and filmmaker of Japanese and Filipino descent, associated with the Antifolk community of New York's East Village. Born in New York City to parents involved in the visual arts, she was raised in SoHo and Hell's Kitchen, attending public schools including Stuyvesant High School. It was at that school where she befriended Annabelle Zakaluk, with whom she co-fronted the Antifolk indie pop band Dream Bitches between 2004 and 2009. In 2011 she relocated to Oakland, California where she joined the queer Deathrock band Bitter Fruit as guitarist and backing vocalist. Between 2012 and 2017 they toured nationally and released two albums, one studio album and one live album. Although she is self-taught on the guitar, her ear for harmonies is due to her ten-year involvement in the Young People's Chorus of New York City, directed by Francisco J. Núñez, with which she toured and competed both nationally and internationally.
Kikuchi has released four solo albums. Songs I Wrote For You (2003) is a collection of songs written and self-released during her time as an art student at Montserrat College of Art in Beverly, Massachusetts. The double-album "How to Stay Amazed/Lilly Lafayette" (2008) is a retrospective of songs written between 2001 and 2006. "Menahan Tree" (2012) is a album of folky songs recorded by Casey Holford and named after the house/venue she shared from 2007-2010 with Jacinta Mack and Angela Carlucci (The Baby Skins, Herman Dune). "Immediacy" (2018) has seen a departure from her previous sound: now playing bass with a full band behind her (Dibson T. Hoffweiler on the drums, Marissa Deitz on cello), she reaches new emotional depths through layers of cello harmony and stark, honest lyrics. The eight songs on Immediacy, recorded by Adam Hirsch at San Francisco's Tiny Telephone (the studio founded by John Vanderslice) reflect the most recent period of Kikuchi's life in which she maintains newfound sobriety, stability and growth.
Kikuchi also has two releases with Dream Bitches: "Sanfransisters" (Olive Juice Music, 2005) and "Coke-and-Spiriters" (Recommended If You Like Records, 2008). In 2006, Recommended If You Like Records released a split 7", This Song/That Song with Casey Holford. In 2017 she released a full-length self-titled album of her band Tight Little Ship (named after a song by Schwervon!). All of her releases are available for purchase on Bandcamp (see link below).
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