Archive | 12:07 pm

The Sound of Summer in Japan

18 Aug

Are they (Cicadas) in your country?
(Cicadas) are a large insect that spends most of it’s life underground in it’s egg. It spends a few years underground before it hatches, then it digs it’s way to the surface.

(Cicadas) emerge from the ground every summer in Japan. Shortly after emerging from the ground still a “baby” that can’t yet fly, they grow into an adult and shed their hard skin.

As an adult, (Cicadas) can fly but they are harmless. They don’t bite or sting…they feed on tree sap so they spend most of their time on tree trunks.

Once they mature, they have a short life-span. They need to quickly find a mate because they will die in just a few weeks.
In order to find a mate, the male (Cicadas) chirp loudly and continuously during the daytime.

So the sound of (Cicadas) chirping is the “sound of summer” to Japanese people.

Anyways, yesterday I had some errands to run in downtown Tokyo. After I finished, I took a few photos…including photos of (Cicadas) that I saw in 上野公園 (Ueno Park).
I also took a short video of a couple (Cicadas) so you can hear them.

Here are the photos and video I took:

Kasumigaseki Police Station

Kasumigaseki Police Station

The engine of Japan's first train in front of 新橋駅 (Shinbashi Stn (one of Japan's oldest train stations))

The engine of Japan's first train in front of 新橋駅 (Shinbashi Stn (one of Japan's oldest train stations))

In front of 新橋駅 (Shinbashi Station)

In front of 新橋駅 (Shinbashi Station)

不忍池 ("Shinobazu Pond") at 上野公園 (Ueno Park)

不忍池 ("Shinobazu Pond") at 上野公園 (Ueno Park)

A Cicada's skin after shedding.

A Cicada's skin after shedding.

蝉 (A Cicada) on a tree

蝉 (A Cicada) on a tree

A Cicada against Tokyo's skyline

A Cicada against Tokyo's skyline

不忍池 (Shinobazu Pond)

不忍池 (Shinobazu Pond)

Mr. Cicada serenading the ladies.

Mr. Cicada serenading the ladies.

DSCF5241

At Ueno’s Toshogu Shrine, there are monuments in honor of the first pair of eyeglasses in Japan, Japanese instrument called “Biwa“, and blowfish.

「ふぐ供養碑」 ("Monument to the blowfish")

「ふぐ供養碑」 ("Monument to the blowfish")

Cicada in front of Ueno's Toshogu Shrine.

Cicada in front of Ueno's Toshogu Shrine.

And here’s a video I took where you can hear the chirping of the (Cicadas):

Another Michael Doret interview

18 Aug

In my previous post, I wrote about the new KISS album that will be released in the U.S. on October 6.

sonic-logo

According to KISS Online, their upcoming album (titled “Sonic Boom) will be released in the U.S. on October 6…and available exclusively at Wal-Mart.
What does that mean? Regular record stores in the U.S. aren’t going to sell it? It’ll only be sold at one chain of stores?
I’ve never heard of something like that before. Has that become common in America? Why?

In Japan, record stores are still common. I’m sure the new KISS album will be available in every record (CD) store across Japan once it’s released here.
Speaking of which, I wonder when the album will be released in Japan? And when KISS will bring the Sonic Boom Tour to Japan.

Anyways, the album cover artwork for “Sonic Boom” was designed by Michael Doret.

KISS "Sonic Boom" album cover

KISS "Sonic Boom" album cover

Michael Doret designed the iconic cover for the KISS album “Rock And Roll Over” back in 1976 and he was asked by Paul Stanley to design their new album cover, too.

KISS "Rock And Roll Over" album cover (1976)

KISS "Rock And Roll Over" album cover (1976)

Last April, Michael Doret did an interview with me (Click here)…

and today he did another interview with me!

Click here to read it.

I would describe my design for “Sonic Boom” as “Rock and Roll Over” turned inside out.

– Michael Doret

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