Tiger Okoshi

Tiger Okoshi's Biography

Toru "Tiger" Okoshi was born just outside of Osaka in 1950, the year of the Tiger. As a child, he was devoted to painting. When he was 13, however, a friend took him to see Louis Armstrong, who was touring in Japan. "He hit me too strong," recalls Okoshi. He took up the trumpet and immersed himself in jazz. In 1972, after he graduated from the prestigious Kwansei Gakuin University with a bachelor of commerce, he married and came to the United States for his honeymoon. "We took Greyhound all the way across the country from Los Angeles to Boston," Okoshi recalls. "The beauty of it all gave me energy and fire. I knew I couldn’t go back."

When they arrived in Boston, they sold their return tickets, paid the tuition at Berklee College of Music and found a studio apartment. He started to practice by the Charles River, hoping someone would hear him and ask him to join a band – that happened. Okoshi graduated summa cum laude from Berklee in 1975. Word of his abilities spread and he began assembling a lengthy resume. In 1974, he performed with the Mike Gibbs Orchestra at Carnegie Hall in New York; in 1975, he toured the United States with the Buddy Rich Orchestra; and from 1976 to 1978, he taught at Berklee. Okoshi has appeared in numerous jazz festivals around the world. His fusion group, Tiger’s Baku, appeared on the cruise liner Queen Elizabeth 2 in August 1998 for the Newport Jazz Festival at Sea. Okoshi is a Professor at the Berklee College of Music.

Tiger Okoshi's Gear
Tiger Okoshi

Gear List

Yamaha Trumpets