Ryo Fukui was a Japanese jazz pianist based in Sapporo. He began teaching himself the piano in 1970 and released his first album, Scenery, six years later. Over the years, he honed his skills through live performances at various jazz clubs. His third album, My Favorite Tune, recorded in 1994 and released in 1995, is now considered rare. In New York followed four years later as a trio with Leroy Williams on drums and Lisle Arthur Atkinson on bass. A Letter from Slowboat is a live album from his time at the "Slowboat" jazz club.