Jason Tom, Hawaiʻi’s Human Beatbox, began beatboxing and scat singing at the tender age of four to the chorus of Michael Jackson’s “Bad” on audio cassette tape.
Since 2004 he has been rocking the mic to young and old alike while spreading an urban a cappella art form known as vocal percussion. His unique style mixes old- and new- school beatboxing with hip-hop, house and dubstep with aloha.
In Honolulu, audiences first took note of Tom for his cover routine of Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean” that he fused with beatboxing, dance and the moonwalk. His original song “Listen Carefully” was inspired by the sound and feel of Bobby McFerrin, Rahzel the Godfather of Noyze and MC Jin. The “Billie Jean” routine and Tom’s original tunes have also been described as a combination of rap and electric dance music. The sound library produced by his voice includes kicks, snares, hi-hats, bass, synths, tom-toms, and wobbles.
Tom, 33, is a two-time performance poet grand finalist and five-time, 1st place winner of Hawaiʻi Slam’s First Thursdays poetry slam.
As the founder of the Human Beatbox Academy, Tom does outreach with performances, workshops and events for people of all ages. He has toured China and collaborated with groups such as Hawaiʻi Meth Project and Music With A Message.
Tom’s been invited as featured presenter at TEDx Talk conferences, the 6th International Human Beatbox Convention and the 1st and 5th American Beatbox Championship in New York City, and is also featured in the documentary film, “American Beatboxer.
In 2010, Tom became the first Asian American beatboxer in the nation to be featured on the website of the global beatboxing multimedia platform Beatbox Battle Network and then in 2014 on the Beatbox Battle TV YouTube channel of over 355,866 subscribers. In 2015, he became the first beatboxer from the Hawaiian Islands to be nominated to represent the U.S. in the men’s solo category at the Beatbox Battle World Championship in Berlin, Germany.
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