Tag Archives: music Festival

Upcoming concerts in Japan

16 Jul

What type of music do you like to listen to? Do you go to concerts often?

As for me, I like heavy metal music. Actually I don’t understand why anyone would listen to anything else. 😉

There are a number of great bands scheduled to play shows in Japan soon.

For example:

● Linkin Park

– 2011 September 10, 11: Chiba, Japan
– 2011 September 13: Yokohama, Japan
– 2011 September 14: Nagoya, Japan
– 2011 September 16: Osaka, Japan

Also, on 2011 August 31, Linkin Park will play a show in Los Angeles, California to help raise money for the victims of the March 11 earthquake in Japan.
The Japanese hard rock band B’z will be the opening act.

● Anthem

The Japanese metal band Anthem are currently on a tour of Japan until the end of July (2011).

● Anthrax

In support of their new album, “Worship Music“, Anthrax will play four dates in Japan this December:

– 2011 December 12: Osaka, Japan
– 2011 December 13, 14: Tokyo, Japan
– 2011 December 16: Nagoya, Japan

The band “Hellyeah” will be the opening act for the Anthrax shows.

● Aerosmith

Hard rock icons Aerosmith will play shows across Japan in (2011) November and December:

– 2011 November 22: Kanazawa, Japan
– 2011 November 25: Hiroshima, Japan
– 2011 November 28, 30: Tokyo, Japan
– 2011 December 2: Fukuoka, Japan
– 2011 December 6: Osaka, Japan
– 2011 December 8: Nagoya, Japan
– 2011 December 10: Sapporo, Japan

● Loudpark Heavy Metal Festival 2011

– 2011 October 15: Saitama, Japan

At this year’s Loudpark, Whitesnake, The Darkness, Stryper and many other acts are scheduled to perform.

● Whitesnake

In addition to headlining this year’s Loudpark festival, Whitesnake will play four additional shows in Japan:

– 2011 October 17: Osaka, Japan
– 2011 October 18: Okayama, Japan
– 2011 October 20: Miyazaki, Japan
– 2011 October 22: Nagoya, Japan

● Mötley Crüe

– 2011 September 28: Nagoya, Japan
– 2011 September 29, 30: Osaka, Japan
– 2011 October 3, 4, 5: Tokyo, Japan

● Def Leppard

– 2011 November 5: Osaka, Japan
– 2011 November 7: Tokyo, Japan

Domination of Japan!

8 Sep

Last June I wrote a post about upcoming heavy metal shows in the Tokyo area.

Some of the concerts I wrote about in that post have already occurred but Metallica will have a concert in Japan later this month and next month will be the annual “Loudpark 2010” heavy metal festival with bands such as Ozzy Osbourne, KoRn, RATT and Motorhead scheduled to perform at this year’s event.

But before either of those concerts, the “Thrash Domination 2010” festival is coming to 川崎 (Kawasaki, Japan).

This is a two-day event with five thrash metal bands scheduled to perform.
Saturday, September 18 is called “Kill Night”…Agent Steel will go on stage first, then Outrage, followed by Nevermore, then Exodus and Overkill will headline.

Then, Sunday, September 19 is called “Brutal Night”…the line-up is nearly identical but rather than Nevermore, Sanctuary will be the third act on the bill and then Overkill will be fourth, with Exodus as the headliners.

Also, on the day before the festival, Overkill will have their own concert in Osaka on September 17th…and Exodus will have their own concert on September 20th (the day after the festival) in Shibuya, Tokyo.

The official "Thrash Domination 2010" T-shirts

Do you like heavy metal? How about “Thrash Metal”? Would you attend this heavy metal music festival?

X Japan in America

10 Apr

When I came to Japan, I heard a Japanese heavy metal band called “X” play.
I thought they sounded good and looked quite different from American metal bands with their giant hairstyles.

They were called simply "X" when I first heard them.

They are considered by many to be the pioneers of the Japanese “Visual Kei” type heavy metal.
The way I’d described the “Visual Kei” genre of music is a uniquely Japanese cross between ‘shock rock’ and ‘glam metal’.

In 1991, X released their album titled “Jealousy” that includes the song “Say Anything”.

X "Jealousy" album cover

Here’s the official music video for the X song “Say Anything“.
This was the first music video of their that I ever saw. It’s kinda long, but it show many concert venues around Japan…including the “Tokyo Dome”.

(The person who uploaded it wrote the band’s name as “X Japan”, but they were still called “X” when the released this song):

This album was very successful in Japan. It’s the first album of theirs that I bought.

Due to the immense domestic success of this album, it was believed that their dream of international stardom would be realized soon.
So to prepare for their international debut, the band decided to change their name to prevent any potential confusion with an American band that was also called “X“.

So, they became “X Japan“.

Logo for the band "X Japan"

Unfortunately, international success managed to elude them. (Probably because their entire catalog of music is sung in Japanese).

In the late ’90s, X Japan broke up.

The lead guitarist, hide, had a semi-successful solo music career after the band break-up. But he died soon after (official cause-of-death was listed as “suicide”, but the other band members insist his death was caused by a drunken accident).

The feminine-acting drummer / pianist, Yoshiki, recorded an instrumental version of the KISS song “Black Diamond” for the KISS tribute album “KISS My A$$“.

The lead vocalist, Toshi, left the music industry for awhile (some say he temporarily joined a religious cult. But he denies that.)

But in 2007, X Japan reunited. They have a new guitarist…but the late hide is still officially considered a member of the band. His guitar and often images of him are always displayed on stage when the band performs.

For their reunion, they updated their image. Gone is the giant hair.

Also, in 2007, the American horror movie “Saw IV” was released and X Japan was asked to record a song for the soundtrack.

They recorded the song “I.V.” for the soundtrack.

The international exposure from that song, plus the current “Japan boom” overseas seems to be providing X Japan with a chance to finally realize their dream of international stardom.

Because X Japan has been invited to perform at the popular “Lollapalooza” music festival in Chicago, USA in 2010 August 6-8!

“Summer Sonic Boom” and Marty Friedman in FANTA band

15 Mar

The American rock band KISS released a new album last autumn titled “Sonic Boom“.

And every summer for the past ten years or so, there is a rock festival in Japan called “Summer Sonic” (actually this is one of the numerous rock festivals in Japan every year).

Well, my good friend Masa told me today that KISS is planning to play at this year’s “Summer Sonic” festival near Tokyo this August to promote their “Sonic Boom” album.

Maybe they’ll call their shows at the festival the “Summer Sonic Boom Tour“. 😉

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If you like heavy metal music you probably recognize the name Marty Friedman.

He used to be the guitarist for the American heavy metal band “Megadeth“.

Marty played on Megadeth's excellent "Countdown To Extinction" album.

Marty Friedman has a Japanese wife and can speak Japanese. When he was a member of Megadeth, he would do all of the band’s media interviews in Japanese when they toured here in Japan (usually Dave Mustaine, the lead singer, does the interviews).

After he quit Megadeth, he and his wife moved to Tokyo (now, like me, he’s an American KISS fan living in Tokyo with his Japanese wife 😉 ).

Now that he lives in Japan, he makes a living by occasionally co-hosting music shows on TV, writing for music magazines, playing in a variety of Japanese bands, and he has released albums of remakes of Japanese songs.

Most recently, he has recorded TV commercial for the Fanta soft drink with three Japanese musicians and Akenono, the former 横綱 (Sumo Grand Champion).

In these commercials, Marty Friedman and the others (who are all famous in Japan…actually, Marty Friedman is the least famous of the five in Japan) are in a “FANTA” rock band.

Since they are all musicians in real life except Akebono (the former sumo champion)…in the commercials, Akebono plays the drums but always messes up.

The reason that these five celebrities were chosen for the “FANTA band” is that the first initial of each member’s name spells F.A.N.T.A.
They are: Marty Friedman (guitar), Ayanocozey (sometimes called “DJ OZMA”) (bass), Nana Tanimura (vocals), Takamizawa (aka: Takamiy (of the Japanese band “The Alfee“)) (guitar), and Akebono (drums (and “bodyguard” 🙂 )).

These commercials are to promote the new Fanta drink in Japan…”Moo Moo White“.
(Click here to read the post I wrote about this drink.)

Here a video of the TV commercial that Fanta released (it doesn’t show who the band members are…in an attempt to build up anticipation):

And here’s the latest one (Akebono, the sumo wrester / drummer drops his drum sticks):

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Also, in Japan, yesterday was the holiday “White Day“.

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On this day in August…

5 Aug

◎ Forty-seven years ago today (1962 August 5), Marilyn Monroe died.
Did you know that in January 1954, she and baseball legend Joe DiMaggio traveled to Japan for their honeymoon?

◎ Tomorrow (August 6) is the 64th anniversary of the atomic bombing of 広島 (Hiroshima, Japan) by the U.S.
August 9th will be the 64th anniversary of the atomic bombing of 長崎 (Nagasaki, Japan).

Last year at this time, I wrote a post about the anniversary of this sad event that includes the last letter written by a kamikaze pilot to his young daughter. (Click here to read it).

◎ 2009 August 15 will mark the day that Japan surrendered and ended World War 2 sixty-four years ago.
Last year, I wrote a post about this day too. (Click here to see it.)

War is terrible. And it’s known that Japan did many bad things during World War 2, but so did every country involved. Including the “Allies”.
Most people agree that it’s best that Japan lost World War 2…but dropping an atomic bomb shouldn’t have been done, and definitely should never be done again.

This is the BBC documentary “Hiroshima” (89 min):

Have you ever heard of 山口彊 (Tsutomu Yamaguchi)?
He’s the only person known to have survived both the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

tsutomu_yamaguchi

山口彊 (Tsutomu Yamaguchi)

His hometown is 長崎 (Nagasaki, Japan), but on 1945 August 6 he went to 広島 (Hiroshima, Japan) on a business trip.
He suffered burns, ear and eye damage when the “Little Boy” bomb was dropped on Hiroshima while he was there.
Because of his injuries, he was sent back to a hospital in his hometown. So he was in Nagasaki when the “Fat Man” bomb was dropped on that city!
He had misfortune of having been in both Hiroshima and Nagasaki when they were atomic bombed. But was lucky to have survived both times.

◎ August 15 – 17 will be the 40th anniversary of the “Woodstock Music & Art Fair“.

Woodstock promo poster

Woodstock promo poster

That famous three-day music festival occurred the year I was born. 1969.
I understand it was a major era-defining event for Americans who were teenagers or young adults at that time.
Personally, I don’t think I would’ve gone to Woodstock even if I was my parents’ age.
I’m not a big on music festivals. I like concerts…but all day music festivals with numerous performers seems too much to me. (Summer music festivals are currently very popular in Japan right now. The three-day “Summer Sonic” is scheduled for this weekend near Tokyo and Osaka. Others are “Fuji Rock Festival“, “Rock In Japan“, “Loudpark Heavy Metal Festival“, etc., but I have never gone to one.)

Also, I wouldn’t have gone to Woodstock because I don’t like the “hippie folk music” that was performed there. The only bands on the set-list that seem half-way decent to me are Johnny Winter and Jimi Hendrix.

If I went to a music festival, it’d be the “Loudpark Heavy Metal Festival“, “Crüe Fest“, or “OzzFest“.

Ozzy Osbourne's "OzzFest"

Ozzy Osbourne's "OzzFest"