Singer-songwriter Fukuda Yasuyuki will be rereleasing his 1st single “Sennen Hanabi” on August 10. The song is a beautiful ballad featuring his sanshin and acoustic guitar playing and the rerelease will have 4 tracks (the initial 2020 release featured the song only).
BEGIN is participating in YouTube’s #YouTubeMusicWeekend and will be streaming their 25th anniversary concert “Sugar Cane Cable NETWORK TOUR 2015-2016 Ryōgoku Kokugikan” on July 17th 13:30 (Okinawa time). The band has been releasing a lot of YouTube content with special video clips for Uta no Hi and looks like they wasted no time in continuing this new tradition. It’s a free concert so be sure to set your reminder!
A recent web article on Hub Okinawa features a story on Kina Shoukichi and the peculiar release of his enka song “Fujisan Japan” — his first single in 39 years! The article discusses his new single as well as the single that started it all, “Haisai Ojisan” written when he was 13 years old. The article makes an interesting take on the single selling 300,000 copies in Okinawa which it compared to selling 30M in Japan and delves into the tragic background of the song and the uncle who inspired it. The article is a great read and comes in two parts. Perfect reading for Irei no Hi.
We’re sad that BEGIN’s song festival “Uta no Hi” was postponed due to the pandemic restrictions so instead they’ve gone to YouTube and social media (LINE, Facebook, and Twitter) . For 9 days (started on June 19th) they will have a special stream available from 9PM and will also release videos from their catalog. Each day will feature a song(s) or a special video: For example, “Shimanchu nu Takara” was day one’s special and the band released 8 video clips on YouTube. Looks like they’ve disabled sharing the videos outside of YouTube 😤 so here’s the link to their channel: BEGIN ch.
Check out their website for the “Uta no Hi Concert 2021 Postponement Special” schedule.
Nenes has a new album that’s planned to be released on June 23rd! The album titled “Gajumaru” will be a self-cover album and we’re still awaiting details for the track list. Given that they have an enormous catalog of songs to choose from (1990 was the first generation Nenes — they’re currently on the 6th generation!), it would have been interesting if they let the fans choose a few of the songs. Maybe they’ll do one of those the next time. 😊
The group mainly use the Twitcasting platform for their streamed shows but they also have a YouTube channel with short clips. Sadly, currently none of their new material is available on Apple Music 🇺🇸 so we’ll have to look to importing the CD.
Listening to Rinken Band’s music is both nostalgic and emotional for me so the orchestra version of their song Funayare in the YouTube clip above pulls at my heartstrings. Uehara Tomoko’s voice is one-of-a-kind and the music Teruya Rinken composes is truly original.
Like many musicians during the pandemic, concert tours have been canceled and those with establishments (minyo clubs, restaurants) have been closed so many have turned to YouTube and social media to reach their many fans across the globe. Dubbed the Rinken Band & Tink Tink official YouTube channel, it actually features more Tink Tink than Rinken Band which is great for daily content but the few that feature Rinken or Tomoko are amazing. You can find Rinken introducing his many instruments which is super interesting for performers and non-performers alike and Tomoko’s solo live (one hour!) concert will blow you away.
Let’s hope that things can get back to normal soon and fans will be able to see them perform at Kalahaai again.
As announced on the group’s Twitter, i-Dushi is closing in on 40,000 subscribers on their YouTube channel! At the time of their tweet, they were 500 away and today they’re less than 200 away! As mentioned in one of our earlier posts, they have been uploading amazing new content frequently so now is a great time to subscribe. Also, be sure to check out their awesome new album Hope that was released in February 2021.
The YouTuber (teamrimi) has several other videos from this session so be sure to check them out!
Myron of Internet-Okinawa was fortunate to meet O-pop trio Wizus in Okinawa. I wrote about the trio more than a year ago and at the time they had rearranged their name from wiz-us to the hiragana ういずあす which they’re still using today. To learn more about the trio, be sure to check out their YouTube channel (the clip down below is their single from April 2009, “Ashita e”), website, and blog (with lots of candid pictures of the trio).
And be sure to check out Myron’s awesome photos from Okinawa on Flickr.
Featuring a mixture of instruments and styles, Ryukyu Soul Ethnica is a new group to keep your eyes on. The duo of Bobzi and Miku Ama, released a 4-track mini album in November 18, 2009 on indie record label Ajapan. A few of the mini album’s tracks (well, 3 of the 4) are available on their YouTube channel as samples.