パーシャクラブ、ソロと様々なスタイルでエモーショナルな唄と三弦を奏でる石垣島・白保出身の新良幸人。デビュー以来、出身地・宮古方言でジャンルを越えた音楽に挑戦するオンリーワンシンガー・下地勇。そんな二人が組んだ先島地方発のユニット。2008年７月に『SAKISHIMA meeting』、2010年には『THE RAINBOW』をリリース。県外でも精力的にライブ活動を展開し、これまでにメキシコ、ジャマイカ、キューバ、香港、台湾等、海外でも公演を行なう。2012年、モントリオール国際映画祭で２部門を受賞した映画『カラカラ』のテーマソング『TOME DOME』を発売。2013年にはフルアルバム『SAKISHIMA meeting THE BEST』を発表した。ニューヨーク公演や、WOMEX(the World Music Expo)2014でのパフォーマンスなど、海外での評価も高い。
Born in Ishigaki City, Okinawa, in 1967, Yukito ARA (leader; vocals, sanshin) studied under his musician father, learning to sing the folk songs of the Yaeyama Islands and to play the sanshin. At 17, he took first prize at the 1985 Yaeyama Traditional Music Competition, becoming the award’s youngest recipient at that time. The following year he relocated to Naha City, the Okinawan capital, to attend college, and has lived there ever since. His wide-ranging musical activities include serving as lead singer with Parsha Club and Acoustic Parsha; playing duos with Satoshi “Sunday” Nakasone, Parsha Club’s percussionist; and performing with Isamu Shimoji, of Okinawa’s Miyako-jima, as Sakishima Meeting. In 2003, Ara’s first solo album with Sunday, Gekkou (“Moon Rainbow”), was released; his second disc, Jouya (“Transfigured Night”), was produced in collaboration with jazz pianist Yuuko Sato and issued in 2011 by Teichiku Entertainment; Ara has also participated on other artists’ recordings, including those of Toshiki Kadomatsu and Rimi Natsukawa. In 2008, Ara received the Choho Miyara Music Award’s Special Prize for recent achievements in Okinawan music. He served as music director for the Canadian-Japanese film Kara Kara (“The Empty Sake Pot”), which won two awards at the 2012 Montreal International Film Festival. He has appeared on tour in China, Mexico, Jamaica, and Cuba.
Isamu SHIMOJI (vocals, guitar, sanshin, composition) was born on Miyako Island, Okinawa in 1969. He moved to Tokyo after high school and then to Naha, Okinawa at the age of 25. Five years later, he began creating songs in Myaakufutsu, one of the six Ryukyuan languages of Okinawa. His musical compositions serve as a cultural repository of his people’s heritage, and in 2006 he received the Choho Miyara Music Award’s Special Prize for recent achievements in Okinawan music. Over the past eleven years, Shimoji has released ten CDs, which include the single The Island We Were Born On and his album tin, both issued in 2002. He performs with Yukito Ara as Sakishima Meeting, records with guitarist Masaru Shimabukuro, and has composed songs for a variety of singers, such as Hiromi Iwasaki and Rimi Natsukawa. Besides performing in Japan, he has appeared in Taiwan, Korea, Mexico, Jamaica, and Cuba.