An alternative to Kouhaku?

For the past seven years or so, I’ve watched Kouhaku Uta Gassen  (紅白歌合戦 literally, Red and White Song Battle), Japan’s big annual New Year’s Eve musical extravaganza. Kouhaku runs from about 7pm to midnight in Japan, which is roughly 2am to 7am California time. Usually it’s a lot of fun, but the 2018 edition seemedContinue reading “An alternative to Kouhaku?”

New Music from Japan — March 2015

Artist: Kenji Takaoka Location: Tokyo 東京 Soundcloud Title: ペンシルロケット (Pencil Rocket) Genre: pop Toshihisa Yamada Location: Osaka 大阪 Soundcloud / Twitter Title: Sound Diary 2015.3.8 Genre: piano Artist: Kiyomitsu Miyashita Location: Tokyo 東京 Soundcloud Title: Cookies Ear Genre: electronic Artist: DJ mijinko3 Location: Tokyo 東京 Soundcloud Title: 夜明け-dawndaybreak- Genre: piano Artist: Mion Location: Sendai 仙台Continue reading “New Music from Japan — March 2015”

New Music from Japan – January 2015

Artist: Himuro Yoshiteru Location: Tokyo 東京 Soundcloud Title: Beats Log 20150114 Genre: electronic Artist: OYMS + Kyosuke Takayasu (Totokoko label) Location (of Totokoko): Saitama さいたま Soundcloud / Twitter Title: Inside of a Wind Genre: pop Free Download Artist: Hizmi (Bunkai-kei label) Location (of Bunkai-kei): Tokyo 東京 Soundcloud / Twitter Title: Nue Genre: electronic Free DownloadContinue reading “New Music from Japan – January 2015”

“Dear little lover, this is your mother”

Yesterday, I was in a store in Little Tokyo (Los Angeles) and saw they had a small bin of CDs marked down to only $3. Being the adventurous type, I dug through them and picked out a couple which looked interesting, although I had no idea who the artists were, the style of music, orContinue reading ““Dear little lover, this is your mother””

ツタヤ と ブックファースト / Tsutaya and Book1st

While watching this video about Tsutaya Books online at Monocle.com … … I wondered if it was the same bookstore to which I went when I visited Osaka in 2008.  I looked it up and no, the store I went to was Book1st. Book1st was a three-story bookstore, just around the corner from Osaka StationContinue reading “ツタヤ と ブックファースト / Tsutaya and Book1st”

“A total performance!”

Exciting news, everyone! I received two emails from NHK World, about Haruka Matsumoto’s video (“Kanashii Uta”), which was featured on NHK World’s recent “We Love Japanese Songs! 2013” earlier this month. I was informed that Haruka’s song is featured on NHK World Radio Japan’s broadcast (hosted by Michelle Yamamoto and Jeff Otto) and can beContinue reading ““A total performance!””

Haruka Matsumoto makes her debut on NHK World!

Out of over 200 videos received from 36 countries and territories, Jogovision Song Contest 2011 winner Haruka Matsumoto’s video for her song, “Kanashii Uta” (A Sad Song), was one of about twenty featured on NHK World’s We Love Japanese Songs! 2013 program! And as far as I could tell, Haruka’s was the only original songContinue reading “Haruka Matsumoto makes her debut on NHK World!”

Haruka Matsumoto will appear on NHK World!

I just received the following email: Dear Haruka Matsumoto, Thank you for sending in your video to “We Love Japanese Songs! 2013”. Your signing was so impressive that we decided to show it in our show! You can watch it on January 2nd (Wed) @ 2:10, 6:10, 10:10, 13:10, 17:10, 21:10 (UTC) on NHK World.Continue reading “Haruka Matsumoto will appear on NHK World!”

Haruka Matsumoto competes at NHK!!

Very exciting news here, folks! About a week ago I submitted a new music video for an NHK contest featuring my character “Haruka Matsumoto”. I came home tonight and found out it’s been accepted! Haruka’s song “Kanashii Uta” (A Sad Song) is competing in NHK’s “We Love Japanese Songs!” Haruka was the winner of TheContinue reading “Haruka Matsumoto competes at NHK!!”

“How cravenly we ourselves court approval”

In America people post a video of themselves whistling “Free Bird” in a tutu and they’re heartbroken if they’re not immediately invited on The View.  It’s different in Japan, though.  There, they haven’t yet cottoned to the idea that the whole point of the Internet is not only that it might make you famous andContinue reading ““How cravenly we ourselves court approval””