THE SOUND OF THE SOUL: Self-expression through shakuhachi

Six musicians gather in a semi-circle in a cavernous East Bay performance space. The room is quiet until they lift their shakuhachi (Japanese bamboo flute). With the first notes, their heads rock from side to side, cheeks puffing, eyebrows darting upward along with particularly dramatic notes. The sounds reverberate against the walls, long wavering notes […]

‘Kids on the Slope,’ New Series by Director of ‘Cowboy Bebop,’ Now Streaming Online (legally)

The highly anticipated “Kids on the Slope,” the new anime series by Shinichiro Watanabe, is now available online through Crunchyroll. I caught the first episode last night, and I highly recommend it for just about all audiences, whether they’re into animation or not. The show takes place in 1966 in rural Kyushu and centers on […]

An ‘instrument’ with soul: Joyo Velarde to perform at ‘Sansei Live’

Since its inception in 1971, Kimochi Inc. has maintained its commitment to serving the Japanese American community’s seniors. In the spirit of community, the San Francisco Japantown-based nonprofit will hold “Sansei Live!” — its annual fundraiser — on Saturday, Oct. 22 at Carnelian By The Bay, 1 Ferry Plaza, in San Francisco. The Nichi Bei […]

The B’z leave The Fillmore abuzz

Friday, July 22 was a typical chilly San Francisco summer evening, but The Fillmore heated up quickly with more than 1,000 fans eager to see the Japanese rock band B’z. This was their second gig on their North American tour, “B’z LIVE-GYM 2011 -long time no see-.” This two-man band, one of the biggest rock […]

Taking the world by storm, B’z ready to rock

Japan’s best-selling band is back to perform at The Fillmore. The legendary two-man rock band B’z will rock out in San Francisco on Friday, July 22, the second of three venues on their North American tour, “B’z LIVE-GYM 2011 -long time no see-.” B’z will perform in Vancouver on Wednesday, July 20 and in Los […]

A sampling of Bay Area cultural classes

Traditional Japanese Music and Dance Odori (Dance) Ensohza Minyoshu at Crissy Field Center, Presidio, SF Schedule: Sun. (twice a month), 5-7 p.m. Cost: Sessions are free. Students must make a commitment to joining the performance group, which entails costume costs and other occasional fees for training with master teachers. Contact: info@enzohza.org. Training in Japanese folk dance […]

2 more ways to help Japan

We’re almost a month out from the devastating events in Japan and I still feel a little weird talking about something as lightweight as food. But you probably don’t come to this blog for Japan relief updates, so this week I’m compromising with this quick post on two more opportunities to help, and a full-length […]

I feel slightly nausiated by this…

Hey guys, it’s time to relax, it’s the weekend and… What is this? Where did this guy come from? I really want to watch this show, just to be allowed to yell profanities at it, but alas, the UK doesn’t let me watch it legally. But seriously, when you name your documentary off of a […]

Far East Movement stays ‘fly like a G6’

To say that Far East Movement has been keeping busy these days is an understatement. Their single “Like a G6” soared to #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart at the end of October and remained in the top 10 until mid-December. Earlier this year, they toured with Lady Gaga, N*E*R*D and Mike Posner, and […]

Akanishi’s ‘Yellow Gold’ tour rolls through San Francisco

A packed auditorium of fans at The Warfield welcomed Jin Akanishi, whose Nov. 10 San Francisco performance was part of his “Yellow Gold 3010 Tour.” Akanishi is the Japanese talent company Johnny and Associates’ first solo act and is actively reaching out to his fans in the U.S. This visit was Akanishi’s second time performing […]

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