February 27, 2005

Add "Smap" to 'Spam'?

Japan is a funny little country. In their own world them Japanese.
Fashion at the moment includes Mr Potato Head, Camo pants and black & red stripes. The 80's you say? They're farking with your head man.

Jpop is huge in Japan. It's Eiffel 65-tastic pop music (and pop-ular it is!) commonly with 4 or 5 guys or girls, doing dance moves while singing songs. Japans biggest Jpop group (see: boy-band) is Smap. Their biggest singles include 'Gambarimasho' and 'Celery'. To make you feel a little more knowledgable (and to put names to the generic faces they are), Smap are Nakai Masahiro, Kimura Takuya (Kimutaku for short and often voted sexiest man in Japan - erk), Katori Shingo, Kusanagi Tsuyoshi and Inagaki Goro. Here's a pic:

Smap are big news in Japan at the moment. The group recently met George Lucas and their fans are ecstatic at this news.. okaaay.

The boy band thing died in 2001 globally, yet Smap appear in TV ads, TV dramas (yes, more than one), Concerts, Musicals, Radio, Magazines and of course on MTV. Their agents are masters of marketing. Its interesting how successful a boyband, er Jpop group can be, considering if you juggle the letters around, you get SPAM. Email filters must be a bitch to manage.

I was listening to UpFM a few weeks ago, and heard a NZ Club DJ talk after just returning from Japan, and said that the Dance scene there is just emerging into what we had in NZ back in '98. There's light in the tunnel yet, but its still a shocker. All the clubs still play euro-happy Vengaboys stuff.

I pity Japanese youth. Leaders in technology, Losers in modern culture. Smap IS Spam sorry.


Peter said...

Gee. Ah, Richard, i've been to Japan, and their youth culture is a vibrant, lively, multi dimensional beast and its a fantastic thing to behold. Your take is a little simplistic. The dance scene there is also equally multi dimensional, not just euro-happy vengaboys. An example - 2% of domestic music sales are from vinyl, mostly Japanese music - be it hiphop, dance, etc. Thats worth around $NZ41 million. Its a diverse market.

Richard said...

My take is indended to be simplistic. Japan is a bubble with 125 million people in it. Consider the bigger picture and my blog becomes political. No thanks. Im not interested in talking about their infertility rate, declining youth population and the subsequent impact on their economy.

Peter said...

I'm not suggesting you comment on the bigger picture, but saying that the japanese kids are losers in modern culture is a bit wide of the mark. I've been there and seen evidence to the contrary. Thats my opinion, anyway. cheers.

MsB said...

Does anyone know of any Japanese radio stations that play dance and electronica? I'd like to send some of our TMet tracks over for their playlists.