慶應義塾大学アート・センター Keio University Art Center

Yui Shoichi Archive

Yui Shoichi is one of the most renowned figures in the world of Japanese Jazz. He remained actively at the forefront of Jazz criticism from 1930 until 1998, writing key texts such as Living Jazz History and The Tale of the History of Jazz, and receiving the Order of the Sacred Treasure in 1996. His witty remarks and sophisticated writings have been described as having “swing,” and his impressive degree of passion and commitment has contributed to the spread of Jazz research to an extent that is hard to imagine for a Japanese critic. 

The construction and ordering of the archive continued with new documents relating to Shoichi’s law studies at Keio donated in 2003. Over the course of the following eight years, the main organization of the archive was completed, and the archive opened its doors to researchers and Jazz enthusiasts on the January 31st, 2011. 

It would not be too much to claim that the many documents and recordings representing Shoichi’s varied career essentially founded Jazz in Japan. There are around 10,000 documents in the collection: books (as well as magazines and printed matter), essays (files, drafts, memos, and notes), audio recordings (CD, records, and cassette tapes), and visual documents (videos). 

The archive itself is open once a week and requires previous registration. As a result of certain privacy restrictions and to preserve fragile documents, some items may only be viewed on request.