Jason Tom is Honolulu, Hawaiʻi's all-star human beatbox who mixes old- and new- school beatboxing with hip-hop, house, and dubstep genres of music to be reckoned with. He is O’ahu's HNL Lifestyle blogger for the human beatbox, music, hip hop, and fashion aficionado. Jason Tom is the keynote presenter, entertainer, musician, voice actor, mathematics coach, publisher, moonwalker, southpaw, education advocate, and former China scholar to have at your next event.
Jason Tom founded the Jason Tom Academy, known formerly as the Human Beatbox Academy, that actively propagates foundation in "beatboxing," and "mathematics" to mobilize the next generation.
Though not a rapper, Jason Tom has employed and gift-wrapped JasonTom.com to rhyme 24 hours with companion HawaiiBeatbox.com, and together as a team they reach over five million households worldwide.
Jason Tom has opened for Michael Winslow, Blue Scholars, the Jabbawockeez, Quest Crew, Reeps One, and Frank De Lima, and has performed live with Tom Thum, Kapena, Jake Shimabukuro, Makana, and Taimane to move mountains.
It began at the tender age of six when Jason Tom recorded his own 1989 beatboxing and scat singing rendition of Michael Jackson’s "Badder," on audio cassette in downtown Honolulu’s concrete jungle.
Jason Tom is a fourth-generation American of Hawaiʻi with Chinese ancestry that has not forgotten where he came from and knows where he is going to impact lives.
Family And Upbringing
Jason Tom's father as head chef owned a Chinese cuisine restaurant in Honolulu, and was a theatre production muralist in China who survived through the Chinese Civil War I, Second Sino-Japanese War, Chinese Civil War II, and World War II.
Jason Tom's father instilled in him listening skills for the spoken tones of Cantonese Chinese, discipline in art, reading, and mathematics. Jason Tom describes his father's teaching style to be like that of a "boot camp," and a "war zone" that taught excellent tools on resilience.
Jason Tom failed first grade at Kaimuki's Liholiho Elementary. Despite that, his favorite memory at Liholiho Elementary was when his teacher played 1989's Moonwalker on video cassette. He loved the "Badder" scene, kid version of Michael Jackson's 1987 song "Bad."
In 1989, Jason Tom was six-years-young, and he recorded his "beatboxing" techniques on analog audio cassette tapes up until 1993. Jason Tom's first music cassette "beatbox" recording was of his rendition of "Badder," performed by his tongue's "inward k snare," him scat singing the synthesizer, and singing the chorus.
Upbringing wise, Jason Tom's mother played a pivotal role in helping him learn the ABC's, and how to read through colored alphabet blocks. Jason Tom describes his mother's teaching style as a hands on kinesthetic, visual, and audible approach.
Jason Tom honed his reading with his Stan Lee's Marvel comic book collection of the Incredible Hulk, Amazing Spider-Man, Avengers, Iron Man, and Uncanny X-Men. He honed his drawing and writing when he self published his own comic books from 1989 to early 2000s.
Jason Tom completed primary education at Liliha's Kauluwela Elementary, and completed secondary education at Nuʻuanu's Kawananakoa Middle School, and Downtown Honolulu's President William McKinley High School.
In higher education, Jason Tom completed the Freeman Foundation China Study Abroad Scholarship in an intensive Mandarin Chinese program at Beijing Foreign Studies University, and earned his associate in arts in Liberal Arts at Kapiʻolani Community College.
He further enrolled in some "Music Business," and "Audio Engineering" classes at Belmont University's Mike Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business, and Honolulu Community College.
Music wise, Jason Tom's mother played a key role in exposing him to music on vinyl records. Jason Tom watched countless hours of Michael Jackson on television, music concerts on VHS, and DVD.
The musical instruments Jason Tom had was a 1950's Jaymar 25-key toy piano, a children-sized Chinese lion dance drum play set of a tanggu drum, drumsticks, and cymbals. As a child of the 1980's, he attended the Chinese New Year Festival annually at Honolulu's historic Chinatown Cultural Plaza, and he replicated the Chinese lion dance drum patterns and sounds with his voice. As an adult it had become a tradition that he performed beatboxing for the Chinese New Year Celebrations.
In fourth grade he sampled an ipu, and "my dog has fleas" on an ukulele. In seventh grade his band teacher picked the "tuba" for him to try, all the while he cultivated his beatboxing behind closed doors.
In Jason Tom's earlier years, his beatboxing was rarely heard. His beatboxing got more challenging to be kept hidden from being overheard when on two separate occasions, his high school freshman English classmate in 1997, and contestants at a California judo tournament in 2002 were wowed by his beatboxing. Those two incidents sparked an interest for him to present his beatboxing to the world by giving it a "spotlight," and came out of his shell from stage fright.
Jason Tom has presented, performed, and delivered keynotes to (not an exhaustive list)
- KS EdTech "Disrupt" Conference
- TEDx Talk Honolulu "It's About Time" Conference
- TEDx Talk Honolulu "Shift" Conference
- Hawaiʻi Children And Youth Day
- Hawaiʻi Book And Music Festival
- Rethink Hawaiʻi Conference
- Windward Oʻahu's Early College Leadership Conference "Elevating Our Next Generation of Leaders"
- Waipahu High School's Arts and Communications Academy Career Day
- Chevron's Honolulu District Speech Festival at McKinley High School
- Word of Life G12 Hawaiʻi Conference "Awaken to Conquer" Youth Rally
- Inspire Church Waikele "Friday Night Flow" Youth Rally
- Chaminade University's Hogan Entrepreneurship Program
- Music With A Message Tour
- Hawaiʻi Meth Project
- Gear Up Hawaiʻi
- Kapiʻolani Community College Scholarship Mahalo Dinner
- 4th Beatbox Battle World Championship (Nominated)
- 6th International Human Beatbox Convention
- 1st American Beatbox Championship
- 4th American Beatbox Championship
Ala Moana Centerstage
Jason Tom Uplift Renew Ala Moana Centerstage
(Click Image for Video) "Watched Hawaii's Human Beatbox Jason Tom perform on Saturday along with the Uplift Dancers from First Assembly Of God and I was blown away by Jason's performance. If you've only seen him beatbox on video and not live on stage you wouldn't know how much of a difference it makes in how it sounds live. There's no comparison, the audio on video doesn't even come close to how it really sounds. Auuuuuright!"
— Nathan Izumi
Music With A Message
American Lung Association in Hawaiʻi Music With A Message Tour
Music With A Message "Not-On-Tobacco" Tour
From 2009 to 2015 Jason Tom has performed in front of 10,000 to 20,000 middle- and high school students annually on the Music With A Message "Not-On-Tobacco" Tour with American Lung Association in Hawaiʻi.
Jason Tom is musically influenced by Bobby McFerrin, Michael Winslow, Michael Jackson, MC Jin, Elaine Chao, Naturally 7, and Rahzel of the Roots. He can vocally replicate and sing musical instruments like the synth bass, kick drum, snare drums, hi-hats, toms, turntables, ipu, ukulele, and didgeridoo. Jason Tom has been dubbed by fans as the Human Skrillex, and Hawaiʻi's King of Beatbox.
Jason Tom failed first grade at Kaimuki's Liholiho Elementary in 1989. From 1989 to 1993, he could not get beyond the first grade at Sun Zhongshan Chinese School, and decided it was not his desire to be there. He completed his primary education at Liliha's Kauluwela Elementary in 1994, secondary education at Nuʻuanu's Kawananakoa Middle School in 1997, and Downtown Honolulu's President William McKinley High School in 2001.
In higher education, Jason Tom completed the Freeman Foundation China Study Abroad Scholarship in an intensive Mandarin Chinese program at Beijing Foreign Studies University in summer 2006, and earned his associate in arts in Liberal Arts at Kapiʻolani Community College in fall 2007.
In spring 2005, Jason Tom's math professor referred him to be hired by the KCC campus as an algebra 1 supplemental instructor. From spring 2005 to fall 2009, he also worked on campus as a Holomua Center math tutor, and TRIO algebra 1 math notetaker while he performed beatboxing on stages statewide, coast to coast, and overseas.
From fall 2007 to fall 2009, Jason Tom enrolled in the MELE program in some "Music Business," and "Audio Engineering" classes at Belmont University's Mike Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business, and Honolulu Community College.
In 2011, Jason Tom was recipient of the Hawaiʻi Scene Choice "Best Performer" Award, and the TEDx Talk Presenter Award.
In 2015, Jason Tom received an invitation and nomination to represent USA in the men's solo competition at the Beatbox Battle World Championship in Berlin, Germany.
In 2017, Jason Tom was called back into math tutoring in Honolulu, Kapolei, Kaneohe, and Mililani. Since then, he has been prospecting the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa's College of Education, and Department of Mathematics due to the nation's growing demand and need for quality educators, and math educators.
In 2012, 2015, 2016, and 2019, Jason Tom beatboxed to rank as one of Hawaiʻi Slam's top 12 performance poets, and First Thursdays' grand slam finalists.
Today, Jason Tom continues his journey as an entertainer, musician, education advocate, voice actor, keynote speaker, moonwalker, mathematics coach, and a giant of an idea to pave the way for generations to come. Have Jason Tom deliver a keynote at your event.
“Jason Tom's rendition of Michael Jackson's 'Billie Jean' is a spectacle of showmanship. From the first drum and snare beats, the song is recognizable, and you wonder how so many sounds could be coming from one person's mouth. Add to this Jason Tom's signature Michael Jackson moves, from the hip thrust to the hand jive.”
— Tracy Chan
Beatbox Accolades, Awards And Honors
Jason Tom KS EdTech DisRupt Conference Opener
(Click Image for Video)
Jason Tom is recipient of the TEDx Presenter Award and Hawaiʻi's Scene Choice "Best Performer" Award, and was featured in the award-winning "American Beatboxer" documentary movie film.
Jason Tom has been voted "Best Honolulu Musician Deserving of a Wider Audience" and was the top 3 musician in the McDonald's of Hawaiʻi sponsored NextNext Music Competition.
Between 2012 and 2019 Jason Tom became a four-time top 12 Hawaiʻi Slam First Thursdays' performance poet with beatboxing. In 2009, he won 1st place in Hawaiʻi's Got Talent, and -2008 won 1st place in the Word of Life Emerge Talent Contest. In 2006 and 2007, he placed in four consecutive Kapiʻolani CC talent competitions. Jason Tom has been nominated as a Hawaiʻi Grammy Award composer and -as one of the world's top 150 professional vocal percussion artists for the Beatbox Battle World Championship.
Jason Tom At TEDx Conference (Click Image for Video)
“I don’t think I can think of a better example of stretching the limits of potential than what Jason Tom can do with his voice. The sounds that he creates from his body are seriously incredible. Beyond that, what he has done with his talent is truly inspiring. His performance at the TEDx Conference was one of the ones that inspired me to start this blog.”
— Jennifer Takahashi
Jason Tom Amphitheater
Jason Tom Amphitheater
“Since the Great Lawn on Kapiʻolani Community College’s campus is really just an obstacle you face on the way to class or the library (seldom do I see students cut across the grass), KCC should recreate this space and construct an amphitheater. The sloping lawn is perfectly suited for this construction. The stage could be at the base of the ʻŌhiʻa Cafeteria with rows of seats or benches extending up to the Kokio building. Once it’s complete, the Jason Tom Amphitheater (named after famed musician and KCC alumnus Jason Tom) would attract music groups wide and far. KCC would suddenly rival the Waikīkī Shell and Blaisdell Center for musical performances. Tickets for students would always be free unless a bidding war were to erupt when Bruno Mars schedules his next concert at KCC.”
Jason Tom's to be released "Breathe" music video was filmed on location in Sydney, Australia.
A Jason Tom Amphitheater has been proposed by Kapiʻo News on their Christmas Dream List for KCC to be built on the campus in honor of him as one of their famed alumnus. Since then Kapiʻo News featured Jason Tom in an alumnus write up. His TEDx Talk video "Vocal Groove" recently got featured at a TED-Education Club Student Talks event. Jason Tom is preparing for Hawaiʻi Slam First Thursdays' Grand Slam Final 2019, shows in China this 2019, and Prisma Dance's "Creation" Production in 2020.
Who is Jason Tom? #JasonTom
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