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WELCOME TO THE MAIN HALL OF FREEDOM
SELAMAT DATANG DI GEDUNG UTAMA “MERDEKA
(Driwan Music Record Cybermuseum)
The Japanese Music record History(Sejarah rekaman Musik Japan ),
dedicated to my son Anton who ever work studie at Toyota Village Japan in 2003
Frame One :
The Japan Music Found In Indonesia
1. LP Japan Traditional Music record
2)Toshiba Record (please help me to translate the japanese language of the song and orchestra)
2.The Japanese Royal Wedding Music Record By Norris Paramor and His Orchestra , produced byColumbia Inc.
1) Prince Akihito (now Emperor)Wedding March
2)Princes Michiko(now empress) Wedding Song
3.Westren Music about Japan
Polydor Record,Tea time in Tokyo,Helmut Zachatian and Orchestra.
1)World Famous Japanse Song: China Night-Japanese Rumba-Gomennasei and The soba night ,Columbia record.
2)Moyeshi Umeki,Sing Japanese Farawell songs,Hanna Ko san, China Night and Over the rainbow.
May 8, 1929(1929-05-08)
|Died||August 28, 2007(2007-08-28) (aged 78)
Licking, Missouri, U.S.
|Spouse||Wynn Opie (1958–1967)
Randall Hood (1968–1976)
Miyoshi Umeki (梅木 美代志, Umeki Miyoshi?, or ミヨシ・ウメキ Miyoshi Umeki; May 8, 1929 – August 28, 2007) was a naturalized American actress and standards singer. She was best known for her roles as Katsumi, the wife of Joe Kelly (Red Buttons), in the 1957 film Sayonara, as Mei Li in the 1958 Broadway musical and 1961 film Flower Drum Song, and as Mrs. Livingston, the housekeeper of Bill Bixby‘s and Brandon Cruz‘s characters, in the TV series The Courtship of Eddie’s Father. She was a shin Issei or post-1945 immigrant from Japan. She was a Tony Award– and Golden Globe-nominated actress and was the first person (and, as of 2010, the only) of East Asian descent to win an Academy Award for acting.
Born as Umeki Miyoshi (in Japanese, a person’s family name is placed before their given name) in Otaru, on the Japanese island of Hokkaidō, she was the youngest of nine children. Her father owned an iron factory. After World War II, Umeki began her career as a nightclub singer in Japan, using the name Nancy Umeki, Her early influences were traditional Kabuki theater and American pop music. Later, in one of her appearances on The Merv Griffin Show, she treated viewers to her impression of singer Billy Eckstine, one of her American favorites growing up.
She recorded for RCA Victor Japan from 1950–1954 and appeared in the film Seishun Jazu Musume. She recorded mostly American jazz standards, which she sang partially in Japanese and partially in English, or solely in either language. Some of the songs she sang during this period were It Isn’t Fair, Sentimental Me, My Foolish Heart, With A Song In My Heart, Again, Vaya Con Dios, (How Much Is) That Doggie in the Window? and I’ll Walk Alone. She moved to the United States in 1955 and after appearing on the Arthur Godfrey Talent Scouts (she was a series regular for one season), she signed with the Mercury Records label and released several singles and two albums.
Her appearances on the Godfrey program brought her to the attention of director Joshua Logan, who cast her in Sayonara. In 1958, she appeared twice on the NBC variety show, The Gisele MacKenzie Show in which she performed “How Deep Is the Ocean”. Umeki won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role in Sayonara. She was the first Asian performer to win an Academy Award.
In 1958, she was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Leading Actress in a Musical for her performance in the Broadway premiere production of the musical Flower Drum Song, where she played Mei-Li. The show ran for two years. A Time magazine cover story remarked that “[T]he warmth of her art works a kind of tranquil magic”. Umeki went on to appear in the film adaptation of the musical. She was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Flower Drum Song.
Although a guest on many television variety shows, she appeared in only four more motion pictures through 1962, including the film version of Flower Drum Song (1961). The others were Cry for Happy (1961), The Horizontal Lieutenant (1962) and A Girl Named Tamiko (1963). From 1969-1972 she appeared in The Courtship of Eddie’s Father as Mrs. Livingston, the housekeeper, for which she was again nominated for a Golden Globe Award. She retired from acting following the end of the series.
Her first marriage, to television director Frederick Winfield “Wynn” Opie in 1958, ended in divorce in 1967. The couple had one son — Michael H Opie, born in 1964. She married Randall Hood in 1968, and her son’s name was changed to Michael Randall Hood. The couple operated a Los Angeles-based business renting editing equipment to film studios and university film programs. Randall Hood died in 1976.
RCA Records Japan (1950-1954)
During her recording career in Japan, Miyoshi recorded the following songs:
- Sleepy My Love (1950)
- Under The Moonlight (1950)
- Don’t Say That Person’s Name (1950)
- Evening Whisper (1950)
- I Feel Like Crying (1950)
- I’m Waiting For You (1950)
- One Night Of Sorrow (1951)
- Misery (1951)[disambiguation needed]
- It Isn’t Fair (1951)
- Sentimental Me (1951)
- My Foolish Heart (1953)
- Why Won’t You Believe Me (live) (1953)
- Again (1953)
- Manhattan Moon (1953)
- With A Song In My Heart (1953)
- I’ll Walk Alone (1953)
- My Baby’s Coming Home (1953)
- Silent Night (1953)
- I’m Walking Behind You (1953)
- (How Much Is) That Doggie in the Window? (1953)
- Sayonara (the Japanese Farewell Song) (1953)
- My Ichiban Tomodachi (1953)
- Vaya Con Dios (1954)
- Kiss Me Again Stranger (1954)
- My Ichiban Tomodachi (live) (1954)
- Sayonara (the Japanese Farewell Song) (live) (1954)
(two other Japanese language songs were recorded in 1952)
Singles on Mercury Records (1955-1959)
Miyoshi signed with Mercury Records in 1955 and recorded the following 45 rpm singles:
- How Deep Is The Ocean/Why Talk (1955)
- The Little Lost Dog/The Story You’re About To Hear Is True (1956)
- The Mountain Beyond The Moon/Oh What Good Company We Could Be(with Red Buttons) (1957)
- Sayonara(The Japanese Farewell Song)/Be Sweet Tonight (1957)
- Sayonara/On And On (1957)
Miyoshi recorded a version of Pick Yourself Up for Mercury Records in 1959, but the song was never released.
Albums on Mercury Records
- If I Give My Heart To You
- China Nights (支那 の夜 Shina no yoru)
- I’m In The Mood For Love
- My Baby’s Coming Home
- How Deep Is The Ocean
- Slowly Go Out of Your Mind
- Teach Me Tonight
- Hanna Ko San
- Can’t Help Loving That Man
- Over The Rainbow
- Sayonara (The Japanese Farewell Song)
- Miyoshi (MG-20568) (1959)
- My Heart Stood Still
- My Ship
- You Make Me Feel So Young
- They Can’t Take That Away From Me
- Sometimes I’m Happy
- I’m Old Fashioned
- That Old Feeling (song)
- Gone With The Wind (song)
- Jeepers Creepers
- Wonder Why
- I Could Write A Book
- Miyoshi – Singing Star of Rodgers And Hammerstein’s Flower Drum Song (MGW-12148)(1958)
(this is a reissue of the Arthur Godfrey album with some tracks replaced) Tracks:
- If I Give My Heart To You
- China Nights (支那 の夜 Shina no yoru)
- I’m In The Mood For Love
- My Baby’s Coming Home
- How Deep Is The Ocean
- Slowly Go Out Of Your Mind
- Teach Me Tonight
- Hanna Ko San
- Can’t Help Loving That Man
- Over The Rainbow
- The Little Lost Dog
Film theme recordings
- Flower Drum Song (Broadway Original Cast) (1958) (Sony Records)
Tracks by Miyoshi Umeki:
- A Hundred Million Miracles
- I Am Going To Like It Here
- Don’t Marry Me
- Wedding Parade/A Hundred Million Miracles
- Flower Drum Song (Film Soundtrack) (1961) (Decca Records)
Miyoshi Umeki sings the same songs on both the film soundtrack and the Broadway show
According to her son, Umeki lived in Sherman Oaks for a number of years  before moving to Licking, Missouri, to be near her son and his family, which included two grandchildren. She died there of complications from cancer.
|1953||Seishun Jazz musume (青春ジャズ娘 Seishun jazu musume)||Kashu|
|1956||Around the World Revue||Nancy Umeki||AKA Universal Musical Short 2655: Around the World Revue|
|1957||Sayonara||Katsumi||Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture
|1961||Flower Drum Song||Mei Li||Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy|
|Cry for Happy||Harue|
|1962||A Girl Named Tamiko||Eiko|
|The Horizontal Lieutenant||Akiko|
|1955||Arthur Godfrey and His Friends||Herself||Regular performer|
|1957||The Perry Como Show||Herself||1 episode|
|1958–1961||The Dinah Shore Chevy Show||Herself||Episode #2.32 (1958), Episode #4.16 (1960), Episode #5.17|
|1958||What’s My Line?||Herself – Mystery Guest||Episode #414 dated 11 May 1958|
|The Tennessee Ernie Ford Show||Herself||Episode #2.25|
|1959||The Chevy Showroom Starring Andy Williams||Herself||Episode #2.2|
|Toast of the Town||Singer|
|1961||Here’s Hollywood||Herself||Episode dated 27 December 1961|
|1961–1962||The Donna Reed Show||Kimi||2 episodes: The Geisha Girl (1961), Aloha, Kimi (1962)|
|1962||The Andy Williams Show||Herself||Episode dated 11 October 1962, Episode dated 13 December 1962|
|Hallmark Hall of Fame||Lotus-Blossom||“The Teahouse of the August Moon”|
|Sam Benedict||Sumiko Matsui||“Tears for a Nobody Doll”|
|1963||Rawhide||Nami||“Incident of the Geisha”|
|Dr. Kildare||Hana Shigera||“One Clear Bright Thursday Morning”|
|1964||Burke’s Law||Mary ‘Lotus Bud’ Ling||“Who Killed the Paper Dragon?”|
|The Virginian||Kim Ho||“Smile of a Dragon”|
|Mister Ed||Ako Tenaka||“Ed in the Peace Corps”|
|The Celebrity Game||Herself||Episode dated 19 April 1964|
|1969||The Queen and I||Japanese Bride||“The Trousseau”|
|1969–1972||The Courtship of Eddie’s Father||Mrs. Livingston||66 episodes
Nominated – Golden Globe Award – Best Supporting Actress – Television
|1971||This Is Your Life||Herself||for Bill Bixby|
|The Pet Set||Herself||Episode dated 30 June 1971|
|The Merv Griffin Show||Herself||Episode dated 29 March 1971|
|1972||Salute to Oscar Hammerstein II||Herself|
3)Japanese Pop Hit,singer notknown, song Sayonara the age 17th, a Life of Happiness and Sorrow,Who Know My love and Love At Sunset.
4)Thelma Aoyama, song Koko Ni Iru Yo
|Birth name||青山 テルマ (Aoyama Thelma)|
|Born||October 27, 1987 (1987-10-27) (age 23)|
|Labels||Universal Music Group (Japan)|
|Associated acts||Taeyang, SoulJa, Richard Gere, Satomi Ishihara, Jyongri|
She is famous for her collaboration song with SoulJa, “Koko ni Iru yo“, and her answer song “Soba ni Iru ne“. In September 2008, the Guinness World Records certified that “Soba ni Iru ne” became the best-selling digital download single in Japan with over two million “full-track” downloads (Chaku Uta Full). However, the record of the Guinness World Records was replaced by Greeeen‘s song “Kiseki” in June 2009. Including various forms of digital downloads, it sold over 8.7 million downloads by November 2008.
Life and career
She spent six years at Osaka International School as an elementary school student. At age 12, her family moved to Torrance, California, and she attended Calle Mayor Middle School. She lived there for two years. She returned to Japan in the winter of 2002. Her family moved to Tokyo. Aoyama attended the American School in Japan. Currently as of 2010, she is studying at Sophia University.
Aoyama’s first release in the music world was a collaboration on DS455’s single “Summer Paradise: Risin’ To Tha Sun, feat. Aoyama Thelma”. The single reached #46 on the Oricon charts. On September 9, 2007, Aoyama made her solo debut with the single “One Way”. This single debuted at #98 on the Oricon charts. Two weeks later, Aoyama was featured on the hit single “Koko ni Iru yo” with fellow J-Soul artist SoulJa. The single stayed on the charts for many weeks. Despite only reaching up to #6 on the charts, the single has sold over 100,000 copies.
In early 2008, Aoyama released an answer song to the single “Koko ni Iru yo” by SoulJa with her own single titled: “Soba ni Iru ne” which also featured SoulJa. Both of the songs are similar, and both share the same chorus. However, the song “Soba ni Iru ne” proved to be more popular than the song “Koko ni Iru yo”, debuting at #3 in its first week on the Oricon charts, and in its second week, reaching #1 on the charts. “Soba ni Iru ne” stayed in the Top 5 ranking for 7 consecutive weeks. It became the highest-selling female single (strictly a duet song) on the Oricon 2008 yearly charts.
Her debut album, Diary, was released in Japan on March 26, 2008.
On February 11, 2009, she released album Love!: Thelma Love Song Collection, which debuted at the number-one position on the Oricon weekly charts. The latest album with a title name of Emotions was released in September, 2009.
In early February, right after the release of her new single “Fall in Love”, Aoyama announced on her official blog that a new single called “Kaeru Basho” will be out on March 3, 2010.The first song called “Kaeru basho” is the ending song in the movie Doraemon: Nobita’s Great Battle of the Mermaid King. This single will be featuring SoulJa, once again, as they have before with Soba ni Iru ne and will have a B side called “Anata ga Kiechaisode“. Summer Love ft. Red Rice came out the summer of 2010.
In 2010, she also sang with the Taiwan pop group, Da Mouth in a duet with the female lead singer, Aisa in the song, ‘Secret Life’ within the album, ‘Da First Episode’.
Frame Two:The Japanese Music Record Historic Collections
Music of Japan
The music of Japan includes a wide array of performers in distinct styles both traditional and modern. The word for music in Japanese is 音楽 (ongaku), combining the kanji 音 (“on” sound) with the kanji 楽 (“gaku” fun, comfort). Japan is the second largest music market in the world, behind the United States, and most of the market is dominated by Japanese artists.
Local music often appears at karaoke venues, which is on lease from the record labels. Traditional Japanese music has no specific beat[clarification needed], and is calm. The music is improvised most of the time. In 1873, a British traveler claimed that Japanese music, “exasperate[s] beyond all endurance the European breast.”
Traditional and folk music
The oldest forms of traditional Japanese music are shōmyō (声明 or you could use 聲明), Buddhist chanting, and gagaku (雅楽), orchestral court music, both of which date to the Nara and Heian periods.
Gagaku is a type of classical music that has been performed at the Imperial court since the Heian period. Kagurauta (神楽歌), Azumaasobi(東遊) and Yamatouta (大和歌) are relatively indigenous repertories. Tōgaku (唐楽) and komagaku originated from the Chinese Tang dynasty via the Korean peninsula. In addition, gagaku is divided into kangen (管弦) (instrumental music) and bugaku (舞楽) (dance accompanied by gagaku).
Originating as early as the 13th century are honkyoku (本曲 “original pieces”). These are single (solo) shakuhachi (尺八) pieces played by mendicant Fuke sect priests of Zen buddhism. These priests, called komusō (“emptiness monk”), played honkyoku for alms and enlightenment. The Fuke sect ceased to exist in the 19th century, but a verbal and written lineage of many honkyoku continues yesterday, though this music is now often practiced in a concert or performance setting.
Noh is usually accompanied by music, uta (唄) and hayashi (囃子)
Musical theater also developed in Japan from an early age. Noh (能) or nō arose out of various more popular traditions and by the 14th century had developed into a highly refined art. It was brought to its peak by Kan’ami (1333–1384) and Zeami (1363?-1443). In particular Zeami provided the core of the Noh repertory and authored many treatises on the secrets of the Noh tradition (until the modern era these were not widely read)…
Another form of Japanese theater is the puppet theater, often known as bunraku (文楽). This traditional puppet theater also has roots in popular traditions and flourished especially during Chonin in the Edo period (1600–1868). It is usually accompanied by recitation (various styles of jōruri) (浄瑠璃) accompanied by shamisen (三味線) music.
During the Edo period actors (after 1652 only male adults) performed the lively and popular kabuki (歌舞伎) theater. Kabuki, which could feature anything from historical plays to dance plays, was often accompanied by nagauta (長唄) style of singing and shamisen performance.
Biwa hōshi, Heike biwa, mōsō, and goze
The biwa (琵琶), a form of short-necked lute, was played by a group of itinerant performers (biwa hōshi) (琵琶法師) who used it to accompany stories. The most famous of these stories is The Tale of the Heike, a 12th century history of the triumph of the Minamoto clan over the Taira. Biwa hōshi began organizing themselves into a guild-like association (tōdō) for visually impaired men as early as the thirteenth century. This guild eventually controlled a large portion of the musical culture of Japan.
In addition, numerous smaller groups of itinerant blind musicians were formed especially in the Kyushu area. These musicians, known as mōsō (盲僧 blind monk) toured their local areas and performed a variety of religious and semi-religious texts to purify households and bring about good health and good luck. They also maintained a repertory of secular genres. The biwa that they played was considerably smaller than the Heike biwa (平家琵琶) played by the biwa hōshi.
Lafcadio Hearn related in his book Kwaidan: Stories and Studies of Strange Things “Mimi-nashi Hoichi” (Hoichi the Earless), a Japanese ghost story about a blind biwa hōshi who performs “The Tale of the Heike”
Blind women, known as goze (瞽女), also toured the land since the medieval era, singing songs and playing accompanying music on a lap drum. From the seventeenth century they often played the koto or the shamisen. Goze organizations sprung up throughout the land, and existed until recently in what is today Niigata prefecture.
The taiko is a Japanese drum that comes in various sizes and is used to play a variety of musical genres. It has become particularly popular in recent years as the central instrument of percussion ensembles whose repertory is based on a variety of folk and festival music of the past. Such taiko music is played by large drum ensembles called kumi-daiko. Its origins are uncertain, but can be stretched out as far back as the 7th centuries, when a clay figure of a drummer indicates its existence. China influences followed, but the instrument and its music remained uniquely Japanese. Taiko drums during this period were used during battle to intimidate the enemy and to communicate commands. Taiko continue to be used in the religious music of Buddhism and Shintō. In the past players were holy men, who played only at special occasions and in small groups, but in time secular men (rarely women) also played the taiko in semi-religious festivals such as the bon dance.
Modern ensemble taiko is said to have been invented by Daihachi Oguchi in 1951. A jazz drummer, Oguchi incorporated his musical background into large ensembles, which he had also designed. His energetic style made his group popular throughout Japan, and made the Hokuriku region a center for taiko music. Musicians to arise from this wave of popularity included Sukeroku Daiko and his bandmate Seido Kobayashi. 1969 saw a group called Za Ondekoza founded by Tagayasu Den; Za Ondekoza gathered together young performers who innovated a new roots revival version of taiko, which was used as a way of life in communal lifestyles. During the 1970s, the Japanese government allocated funds to preserve Japanese culture, and many community taiko groups were formed. Later in the century, taiko groups spread across the world, especially to the United States. The video game Taiko Drum Master is based around taiko. One example of a modern Taiko band is Gocoo.
Min’yō folk music
A Japanese folkswoman with her shamisen, 1904
Japanese folk songs (min’yō) can be grouped and classified in many ways but it is often convenient to think of four main categories: work songs, religious songs (such as sato kagura, a form of Shintoist music), songs used for gatherings such as weddings, funerals, and festivals (matsuri, especially Obon), and children’s songs (warabe uta).
In min’yō, singers are typically accompanied by the three-stringed lute known as the shamisen, taiko drums, and a bamboo flute called shakuhachi. Other instruments that could accompany are a transverse flute known as the shinobue, a bell known as kane, a hand drum called the tsuzumi, and/or a 13-stringed zither known as the koto. In Okinawa, the main instrument is the sanshin. These are traditional Japanese instruments, but modern instrumentation, such as electric guitars and synthesizers, is also used in this day and age, when enka singers cover traditional min’yō songs (Enka being a Japanese music genre all its own).
Terms often heard when speaking about min’yō are ondo, bushi, bon uta, and komori uta. An ondo generally describes any folk song with a distinctive swing that may be heard as 2/4 time rhythm (though performers usually do not group beats). The typical folk song heard at Obon festival dances will most likely be an ondo. A fushi is a song with a distinctive melody. Its very name, which is pronounced “bushi” in compounds, means “melody” or “rhythm.” The word is rarely used on its own, but is usually prefixed by a term referring to occupation, location, personal name or the like. Bon uta, as the name describes, are songs for Obon, the lantern festival of the dead. Komori uta are children’s lullabies. The names of min’yo songs often include descriptive term, usually at the end. For example: Tokyo Ondo, Kushimoto Bushi, Hokkai Bon Uta, and Itsuki no Komoriuta.
Many of these songs include extra stress on certain syllables as well as pitched shouts (kakegoe). Kakegoe are generally shouts of cheer but in min’yō, they are often included as parts of choruses. There are many kakegoe, though they vary from region to region. In Okinawa Min’yō, for example, one will hear the common “ha iya sasa!” In mainland Japan, however, one will be more likely to hear “a yoisho!,” “sate!,” or “a sore!” Others are “a donto koi!,” and “dokoisho!”
Recently a guild-based system known as the iemoto system has been applied to some forms of min’yō; it is called. This system was originally developed for transmitting classical genres such as nagauta, shakuhachi, or koto music, but since it proved profitable to teachers and was supported by students who wished to obtain certificates of proficiency and artist’s names continues to spread to genres such as min’yō, Tsugaru-jamisen and other forms of music that were traditionally transmitted more informally. Today some min’yō are passed on in such pseudo-family organizations and long apprenticeships are common.
Okinawan folk music
Okinawan folk music varies from mainland Japanese folk music in several ways.
First, Okinawan folk music is often accompanied by the sanshin whereas in mainland Japan, the shamisen accompanies instead. Other Okinawan instruments include the sanba (which produce a clicking sound similar to that of castanets), taiko and a sharp finger whistling called yubi-bue (指笛?).
Second, tonality. A pentatonic scale, which coincides with the major pentatonic scale of Western musical disciplines, is often heard in min’yō from the main islands of Japan, see minyō scale. In this pentatonic scale the subdominant and leading tone (scale degrees 4 and 7 of the Western major scale) are omitted, resulting in a musical scale with no half-steps between each note. (Do, Re, Mi, So, La in solfeggio, or scale degrees 1, 2, 3, 5, and 6) Okinawan min’yō, however, is characterized by scales that include the half-steps omitted in the aforementioned pentatonic scale, when analyzed in the Western discipline of music. In fact, the most common scale used in Okinawan min’yō includes scale degrees 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7,
- Biwa (琵琶)
- Fue (笛)
- Hichiriki (篳篥)
- Hocchiku (法竹)
- Hyoshigi (拍子木)
- Kane (鐘)
- Kakko (鞨鼓)
- Kokyū (胡弓)
- Koto (琴)
- Niko (二胡)
- Okawa (AKA Ōtsuzumi) (大鼓)
- Ryūteki (竜笛)
- Sanshin (三線)
- Shakuhachi (bamboo flute) (尺八)
- Shamisen (三味線)
- Shime-Daiko (締太鼓)
- Shinobue (篠笛)
- Shō (笙)
- Suikinkutsu (water zither) (水琴窟)
- Taiko (i.e. Wadaiko)太鼓～和太鼓
- Tsuzumi (鼓) (AKA Kotsuzumi)
Arrival of Western music
Traditional pop music
After the Meiji Restoration introduced Western musical instruction, a bureaucrat named Izawa Shuji compiled songs like “Auld Lang Syne” and commissioned songs using a pentatonic melody. Western music, especially military marches, soon became popular in Japan. Two major forms of music that developed during this period were shoka, which was composed to bring western music to schools, and gunka, which are military marches with some Japanese elements..
As Japan moved towards representative democracy in the late 19th century, leaders hired singers to sell copies of songs that aired their messages, since the leaders themselves were usually prohibited from speaking in public. The street performers were called enka-shi. Also at the end of the 19th century, an Osakan form of streetcorner singing became popular; this was called rōkyoku. This included the first two Japanese stars, Yoshida Naramaru and Tochuken Kumoemon..
Westernized pop music is called kayōkyoku, which is said to have and first appeared in a dramatization of Resurrection by Tolstoy. The song “Kachūsha no Uta”, composed by Shinpei Nakayama, was sung by Sumako Matsui in 1914. The song became a hit among enka-shi, and was one of the first major best-selling records in Japan. . Ryūkōka, which adopted Western classical music, made waves across the country in the prewar period.. Ichiro Fujiyama became popular in the prewar period, but war songs later became popular when the World War II occurred..
Kayōkyoku became a major industry, especially after the arrival of superstar Misora Hibari. In the 1950s, tango and other kinds of Latin music, especially Cuban music, became very popular in Japan. A distinctively Japanese form of tango called dodompa also developed. Kayōkyoku became associated entirely with traditional Japanese structures, while more Western-style music was called Japanese pop. Enka music, adopting Japanese traditional structures, became quite popular in the postwar period, though its popularity has waned since the 1970s and enjoys little favour with contemporary youth. Famous enka singers include Hibari Misora, Saburo Kitajima, Ikuzo Yoshi and Kiyoshi Hikawa.
Western classical music
Western classical music has a strong presence in Japan and the country is one of the most important markets for this music tradition., with Toru Takemitsu (famous as well for his avant-garde works and movie scoring) being the best known. Also famous is the conductor Seiji Ozawa. Since 1999 the pianist Fujiko Hemming, who plays Liszt and Chopin, has been famous and her CDs have sold millions of copies. . Japan is also home to the world’s leading wind band. , the Tokyo Kosei Wind Orchestra, and the largest music competition of any kind, the All-Japan Band Association national contest. Japanese, Western classical music does not represent Japan’s original culture. Japanese were first exposed to it in the second half of the 19th century, after more than 200 hundred years of national isolation during the Edo Period. But after that, Japanese studied classical music earnestly to make it a part of their own artistic culture.
From the 1930s on (except during World War II, when it was repressed as music of the enemy) jazz has had a strong presence in Japan. The country is an important market for the music, and it is common that recordings unavailable in the United States or Europe are available there. A number of Japanese jazz musicians have achieved popularity abroad as well as at home. Musicians such as June (born in Japan) and Dan (third generation American born, of Hiroshima fame), and Sadao Watanabe have a large fan base outside their native country.
Lately, club jazz or nu-jazz has become popular with a growing number of young Japanese. Native DJs such as Ryota Nozaki (Jazztronik), the two brothers Okino Shuya and Okino Yoshihiro of Kyoto Jazz Massive, Toshio Matsuura (former member of the United Future Organization) and DJ Shundai Matsuo creator of the popular monthly DJ event, Creole in Beppu, Japan as well as nu-jazz artists, Sleepwalker, GrooveLine, and Soil & “Pimp” Sessions have brought great change to the traditional notions of jazz in Japan.
J-pop, an abbreviation for Japanese pop, is a loosely-defined musical genre that entered the musical mainstream of Japan in the 1990s. Modern J-pop has its roots in 1960s music such as The Beatles, and replaced kayōkyoku (“Lyric Singing Music”, a term for Japanese pop music from the 1920s to the 1980s) in the Japanese music scene. The term was coined by the Japanese media to distinguish Japanese music from foreign music, and now refers to most Japanese popular music.
In the 1960s, Japanese bands imitated The Beatles, Bob Dylan and the Rolling Stones, along with other Appalachian folk music, psychedelic rock, mod and similar genres; this was called Group Sounds (G.S.). John Lennon of The Beatles later became one of most popular Western musicians in Japan. Group Sounds is a genre of Japanese rock music that was popular in the mid to late 1960s. The Tigers was the most popular G.S. band in the era. Later, some of the members of The Tigers, The Tempters and The Spiders formed the first Japanese supergroup Pyg.
Homegrown Japanese country rock had developed by the late 1960s.. Artists like Happy End are considered to have virtually developed the genre. During the 1970s, it grew more popular. The Okinawan band Champloose, along with Carol(led by Eikichi Yazawa), RC Succession and Shinji Harada were especially famous and helped define the genre’s sound. Also beginning in the late sixties and mostly active in the seventies are bands mixing rock music with folk and pop elements, like Off Course, Kai Band (led by Yoshihiro Kai), Tulip, and Alice (led by Shinji Tanimura). These groups are usually labelled “folk” by the Japanese because of their regular use of the acoustic guitar.
In the 1980s, Boøwy is recognized as the first Japanese rock band, and who inspired alternative rock bands like Shonen Knife, Boredoms, The Pillows and Tama & Little Creatures as well as more mainstream bands as Glay. Most influentially, the 1980s spawned Yellow Magic Orchestra, which was inspired by developing electronic music, led by Haruomi Hosono. In 1980, Huruoma and Ry Cooder, an American musician, collaborated on a rock album with Shoukichi Kina, driving force behind the aforementioned Okinawan band Champloose. They were followed by Sandii & the Sunsetz, who further mixed Japanese and Okinawan influences. Also during the 80’s, Japanese metal/rock bands gave birth to the movement known as visual kei, represented during its history by bands like X Japan, Buck-Tick, D’erlanger, Luna Sea, Malice Mizer and many others, some of which experienced national, and international success in the latest years.
In the 1990s, Japanese rock musicians such as B’z, Mr. Children, Glay, Southern All Stars, Tube, T-Bolan, L’Arc-en-Ciel, Wands, Field of View, Deen, Ulfuls, Lindberg, Sharam Q, Spitz, Judy and Mary, The Yellow Monkey, The Brilliant Green and Dragon Ash achieved great commercial success. B’z is the #1 best selling act in Japanese music since Oricon started to count., followed by Mr. Children. In 1990s, J-pop songs were often used in films, anime, television advertisement and dramatic programming, becoming some of the best-selling forms of music in Japan. The rise of disposable pop has been linked with the popularity of karaoke, leading to much criticism that it is consumerist and shallow. For example, Kazufumi Miyazawa of The Boom, claims “I hate that buy, listen, and throw away and sing at a karaoke bar mentality.”
Luna Sea, which is often considered visual kei or related to this genre, Malice Mizer, Dir en grey, Janne Da Arc, Shazna, also achieved great commercial success in the late 1990s. Gackt Camui (ex Malice Mizer), although not placed into an exact music genre, is generally thought of as both a (visual) rock and pop star, having an official fanbase called Dears in Japan. In 2009 he opened the fanclub to Taiwan and Korea and is looking to expand it throughout Asia and overseas.
The first Fuji Rock Festival opened in 1997. Rising Sun Rock Festival opened in 1999. Summer Sonic Festival and Rock in Japan Festival opened in 2000. Though the rock scene in the 2000s is not as strong, newer bands such as Bump of Chicken, Sambomaster, FLOW, Orange Range, Remioromen, Uverworld, Radwimps and Aqua Timez, which are considered rock bands, have achieved success. Orange Range also adopts[clarification needed] hip hop. Established bands as Glay, L’Arc-en-Ciel, B’z and Mr. Children, also continue to top charts, though B’z and Mr. Children are the only bands to maintain a high standards of their sales along the years.
Japanese rock has a vibrant underground rock scene, best known internationally for noise rock bands such as Boredoms and Melt Banana, as well as stoner rock bands such as Boris and alternative acts such as Shonen Knife (who were championed in the West by Kurt Cobain), Pizzicato Five and The Pillows (who gained international attention in 1999 for the FLCL soundtrack). More conventional indie rock artists such as Eastern Youth, The Band Apart and Number Girl have found some success in Japan , but little recognition outside of their home country. Other notable international touring indie rock acts are Mono and Nisennenmondai.
Punk rock / alternative
Early examples of punk rock / no wave in Japan include The SS, The Star Club, The Stalin, INU, Gaseneta, Bomb Factory, Lizard (who were produced by the Stranglers) and Friction (whose guitarist Reck had previously played with Teenage Jesus and the Jerks before returning to Tokyo) and The Blue Hearts. The early punk scene was immortalised on film by Sogo Ishii, who directed the 1982 film Burst City featuring a cast of punk bands/musicians and also filmed videos for The Stalin. In the 80s, hardcore bands such as GISM, Gauze, Confuse, Lip Cream and Systematic Death began appearing, some incorporating crossover elements. The independent scene also included a diverse number of alternative / post-punk / new wave artists such as Aburadako, P-Model, Uchoten, Auto-Mod, Buck-Tick, Guernica and Yapoos (both of which featured Jun Togawa), G-Schmitt, Totsuzen Danball and Jagatara, along with noise/industrial bands such as Hijokaidan and Hanatarashi.
Japan is known for being a successful area for metal bands touring around the world and many live albums are recorded in Japan. Notable examples are Judas Priest‘s Unleashed in the East, Iron Maiden‘s Maiden Japan, Deep Purple‘s Made in Japan and Dream Theater‘s Live at Budokan. From the international bands, such as Angra, Sonata Arctica and Skylark have had major success in Japan
The most popular genres of metal in Japan are Neo-classical metal and Power metal. Japanese Neo-classical bands also had success among international Neo-classical fans with Concerto Moon and Ark Storm being the leading bands.
Speed metal, melodic death metal and doom metal also have followings. The most successful speed metal band is X Japan. Extreme metal is usually treated as an underground form of music in Japan. Notable acts are Sabbat and Sigh.
During the 80’s most known power/heavy metal bands were Loudness, Anthem, Earthshaker, Vow Wow, and Dead End among others. Until now Loudness is the most successful Japanese heavy metal band outside of Japan. Their 6th album, Lightning Strikes peaked at #64 on the Billboard 200.
Western inspired Folk music
After the boom of Group Sounds, there were several influential singer-songwriters. Nobuyasu Okabayashi was the first who became widely recognized. Wataru Takada, inspired by Woody Guthrie, also became popular. . They both were influenced by American folk music but wrote Japanese lyrics. Takada used modern Japanese poetry as lyrics, while Kazuki Tomokawa made an album using Chuya Nakahara’s poems. Tomobe Masato, inspired by Bob Dylan, wrote critically acclaimed lyrics.
Electropop and club music
Electronic pop music in Japan became a successful commodity with the “Technopop” craze of the late 70s and 80s., beginning with Yellow Magic Orchestra and solo albums of Ryuichi Sakamoto and Haruomi Hosono in 1978 before hitting popularity in 79/80. Influenced by disco, impressionistic and 20th century classical composition, jazz/fusion pop, new wave and technopop artists such as Kraftwerk and Telex, these artists were commercial yet uncompromising. Ryuichi Sakamoto claims that “to me, making pop music is not a compromise because I enjoy doing it”. The artists that fall under the banner of technopop in Japan are as loose as those that do so in the West, thus new wave bands such as P-Model and The Plastics fall under the category alongside the symphonic techno arrangements of Yellow Magic Orchestra. The popularity of this music meant that many popular artists of the 70s that previously were known for acoustic music turned to techno production,. such as Taeko Onuki and Akiko Yano, and idol producers began employing electronic arrangements for new singers in the 80s. Today, newer artists such as Polysics pay explicit homage to this era of Japanese popular (and in some cases underground or difficult to obtain) music..
Dance and disco music
In 1984, American musician Michael Jackson‘s album Thriller became the first album by a Western artist to sell over one million copies in Japanese Oricon charts history. His style is cited as one of the models for Japanese dance music, leading the popularity of Avex Group and Johnny & Associates.
In 1990, Avex Trax began to release the Super Eurobeat series in Japan. Eurobeat in Japan led the popularity of group dance form Para Para. While Avex’s artists such as Every Little Thing and Ayumi Hamasaki became popular in 1990s, new names in the late 90s included Hikaru Utada and Morning Musume. Hikaru Utada’s debut album, First Love, went on to be the highest-selling album in Japan with over 7 million copies sold, whereas Ayumi Hamasaki became Japan’s top selling female and solo artist, and Morning Musume remains one of the most well-known girl groups in the Japanese pop music industry.
Hip-hop is a newer form of music on the Japanese music scene. Many felt it was a trend that would immediately pass. However, the genre has lasted for many years and is still thriving. In fact, rappers in Japan did not achieve the success of hip-hop artists in other countries until the late 1980s. This was mainly due to the music world’s belief that “Japanese sentences were not capable of forming the rhyming effect that was contained in American rappers’ songs.” There is a certain, well-defined structure to the music industry called “The Pyramid Structure of a Music Scene”. As Ian Condry notes, “viewing a music scene in terms of a pyramid provides a more nuanced understanding of how to interpret the significance of different levels and kinds of success.” The levels are as follows (from lowest to highest): fans and potential artists, performing artists, recording artists (indies), major label artists, and mega-hit stars. These different levels can be clearly seen at a genba, or nightclub. Different “families” of rappers perform on stage. A family is essentially a collection of rap groups that are usually headed by one of the more famous Tokyo acts, which also include a number of proteges. They are important because they are “the key to understanding stylistic differences between groups.” Hip-hop fans in the audience are the ones in control of the night club. They are the judges who determine the winners in rap battles on stage. An example of this can be seen with the battle between rap artists Dabo (a major label artist) and Kan (an indie artist). Kan challenged Dabo to a battle on stage while Dabo was mid-performance. Another important part of night clubs was displayed at this time. It showed “the openness of the scene and the fluidity of boundaries in clubs.”
In the late 1980s, roots bands like Shang Shang Typhoon and The Boom became popular. Okinawan roots bands like Nenes and Kina were also commercially and critically successful. This led to the second wave of Okinawan music, led by the sudden success of Rinkenband. A new wave of bands followed, including the comebacks of Champluse and Kina, as led by Kikusuimaru Kawachiya; very similar to kawachi ondo is Tadamaru Sakuragawa‘s goshu ondo.
Latin, reggae and ska musi
Other forms of music from Indonesia, Jamaica and elsewhere were assimilated. African soukous and Latin music was popular as was Jamaican reggae and ska, exemplified by Mice Teeth, Mute Beat, La-ppisch, Home Grown and Ska Flames, Determinations, and Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra.
Theme music composed for films, anime, Tokusatsu, and Japanese television dramas are considered a separate music genre. Several prominent musical artists and groups have spent most of their musical careers performing theme songs and composing soundtracks for visual media. Such artists include Masato Shimon (current holder of the world record for most successful single in Japan for “Oyoge! Taiyaki-kun“), Ichirou Mizuki, all of the members of JAM Project, Akira Kushida, Isao Sasaki, and Mitsuko Horie. Notable composers of Japanese theme music include Joe Hisaishi, Michiru Oshima, Yoko Kanno, Toshihiko Sahashi, Yuki Kajiura and Kōtarō Nakagawa.
When the first electronic games were sold, they only had rudimentary sound chips with which to produce music. As the technology advanced, the quality of sound and music these game machines could produce increased dramatically. The first game to take credit for its music was Xevious, also noteworthy for its deeply (at that time) constructed stories. Though many games have had beautiful music to accompany their gameplay, one of the most important games in the history of the video game music is Dragon Quest. Koichi Sugiyama, a composer who was known for his music for various anime and TV shows, including Cyborg 009 and a feature film of Godzilla vs. Biollante, got involved in the project out of the pure curiosity and proved that games can have serious soundtracks. Until his involvement, music and sounds were often neglected in the development of video games and programmers with little musical knowledge were forced to write the soundtracks as well. Undaunted by technological limits, Sugiyama worked with only 8 part polyphony to create a soundtrack that would not tire the player despite hours and hours of gameplay.
Another well-known author of video game music is Nobuo Uematsu of Mistwalker. Even Uematsu’s earlier compositions for the game series, Final Fantasy, on Famicom (Nintendo Entertainment System in America) are being arranged for full orchestral score. In 2003, he even took his rock-based tunes from their original MIDI format and created The Black Mages.
Motoi Sakuraba is also another well-known video game composer. He is known for composing the Tales Series, Star Ocean, Valkyrie Profile, Golden Sun, and the Baten Kaitos games, as well as numerous Mario Sports games.
The techno/trance music production group I’ve Sound has made a name for themselves first by making themes for eroge computer games, and then by breaking into the anime scene by composing themes for them. Unlike others, this group was able to find fans in other parts of the world through their eroge and anime themes.
Today, game soundtracks are sold on CD. Famous singers like Hikaru Utada, Ayumi Hamasaki and Gackt sometimes sing songs for games as well, and this is also seen as a way for singers to make a names for themselves.
The end @ copyright Xr Iwan Suwandy 2011