Archive for ‘Music’

January 28, 2012

Ikuko Kawai is an internationally acclaimed violinist: elegant and caring

Ikuko Kawai is an internationally acclaimed violinist: elegant and caring

Sarah Deschamps and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

Ikuko Kawai is an internationally acclaimed violinist who was born in Japan and she also does work to highlight poverty and other important global issues. While the main focus of her career is firmly based on the classical field this doesn’t prevent this talented lady from venturing into other forms of music. Therefore, the exuberance and stylish nature of Ikuko Kawai can transcend many styles of music.

The broad nature of her talents apply to acclaimed violinist, professor in the department of music at Osaka University, composer, human rights works, and other areas. Ikuko Kawai fuses her amazing violin talents with techniques in theatrical art and the creativity of her performance is a wonder to behold.

In the past Ikuko Kawai performed under Chung Myung-Whim who is a world famous conductor. Also, while many famous orchestras in Japan have been graced by her stunning ability, the same applies to the international arena. Therefore, just like Kaori Muraji who is an internationally acclaimed classical guitarist from Japan, it is clear that many talented classical performers from this nation are in the forefront of classical music and setting amazing standards.

Not surprisingly, the gracefulness of Ikuko Kawai inspired the figure skater Michelle Kwan who performed to “Red Violin” during her skating program. The natural correlation between the artistic nature of ice skating and the attributes of Ikuko Kawai who performs with so much grace and panache, meant that the music worked perfectly for Michelle Kwan. Also, the international community throughout the world who witnessed this ice skating championship was also blessed because the talents of Ikuko Kawai became known to new fans.

Another important angle which highlights the caring nature of Ikuko Kawai is her involvement in human rights work. In the past she visited refugees from Myanmar (Burma) in Thailand and clearly the impact of this experience opened her eyes to the reality of poverty, international wars, lack of opportunities, and so forth. Her visit worked wonders both ways because in a world of beauty, extravagance, and freedom for many; you also have another world of oppression, alienation, lack of opportunities, and other negatives.

Ikuko Kawai began her UNHCR work in 2007 and her visit to refugees from Myanmar, raising funds, drawing international attention to the crisis in Darfur, and other important areas, meant that this lady of gracefulness was now also connecting with “the real world” which remains distant for the majority of people. Children first performed and then Ikuko Kawai followed and by the end it was clear that the impact worked both ways.

Ikuko Kawai commented that the “Children’s eyes were shining when they were listening to my violin. Inspired by their vivid reaction, I really enjoyed playing in front of them.” She further commented that “Through my violin performance I wanted refugee children to feel something beyond their daily life in the limited space. I wanted to get closer to them and encourage them. I am glad to feel that we were able to communicate through music”.

Since this time Ikuko Kawai continues to build bridges by performing with her accustomed grace and interacting with people who are less fortunate. This talented individual is a great ambassador for the classical world and for Japan.

Therefore, if you adore Ikuko Kawai, classical music, the violin, or if you are a music lover of many styles, then please check the links below. Ikuko Kawai is a rare gift and thankfully this passionate lady is giving so much to the world of music and in many other areas.

Ikuko Kawai music on Anselmonadir website.

http://www.youtube.com/user/anselmonadir#p/f/775/kEl9tgVIheo Ikuko Kawai

http://www.youtube.com/user/anselmonadir#p/f/100/Xbx2H6mKYH0 Ikuko Kawai – Jupiter from the Symphony the Planets

http://www.youtube.com/user/anselmonadir#p/f/489/ZC-iQXWa0f8 Ikuko Kawai

http://www.ikukokawai.com/prof/prof-english.html Ikuko Kawai website

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1iUBMOVptrU Ikuko Kawai and “Red Violin”

leejay@moderntokyotimes.com

http://moderntokyotimes.com

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January 25, 2012

Korean International Style Show in Tokyo Jan 25/26/27: Fashion and K-pop

Korean International Style Show in Tokyo Jan 25/26/27: Fashion and K-pop

Michel Lebon and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

In Tokyo (http://www.mbcjapan.net/kiss/the buzzing nature of Korean fashion and K-pop will be on show for three days starting on January 25. The “Korean wave” which is spreading internationally and growing in power in distant lands, will be on show in the ultra-modern city of Tokyo. Also, while the K-pop phenomena is internationally known because of the vibrancy of the younger generation in South Korea, this three day event will also focus on Korean fashion and show the buzzing nature of fashion in this nation which is rich in culture and history.

The event will be held at Yoyogi National Gymnasium in trendy Tokyo and this building is in walking distance of the amazing fashion district of Harajuku. Girls Award presents KISS (Korean International Style Show) and clearly everything is being prepared for a stunning fashion and K-pop event which will reverberate throughout Tokyo.

The Korean fashion angle is showing the natural extension of the vibrant K-pop music scene because both flow naturally together. More important, the fashion and music vibes of Tokyo, Seoul, Busan, Osaka, and other major cities in Japan and South Korea respectively, are in high demand and with the economic power of major international cities like Tokyo then these are exciting times.

Stunning models will also enhance the fashion vibes of South Korea. Also, the “Tokyo apple pie” and “Osaka apple pie” continues to attract amazing K-pop groups and soloists from South Korea. Therefore, this event will highlight the energy and vibrancy of fashion and K-pop and show the synergy of both nations.

Japanese fashion will also be highlighted despite the main focus being South Korean fashion. Also, Lumine which is adored in Japan will show the huge crowd why this department store is one step ahead. The mixture of Japanese fashion being in the background but providing a nice angle is a really nice touch and Lumine will express the trends within the Tokyo and Japanese fashion scene.

On the first day on January 25 high end fashion companies will be showing their latest trends and the elegance of South Korean fashion. This applies to Lie Sang Bong, Doho, Couronne, and Resurrection by Juyoung. Japanese fashion brands will also be on show and this applies to Dresscamp and Loveless x MCM.

The following day on January 26 will witness the buzzing South Korean fashion trends of Spicy Color, Mag/Mag (Magnificon/Magnificent), Who A.U. California Dream, and LAP (Los Angeles Project). Lumine will also compliment proceedings by showing the vibe of this amazing department store which is based throughout Tokyo. This day promises to be high action and will show a different angle to day one.

The final day of this three day event will highlight South Korean street fashion from the shopping mall Doota. This applies to brands which can be found in this trendy shopping mall in South Korea and brands on show will be Blooming, Gshopgirl, Senorita, Cres.edim, The Style, and Le Queen Couture. On the same day the Japanese fashion brand Guild Prime will highlight their latest products.

Of course the music aspect is very important and currently 33,000 tickets have been sold. K-pop groups on show include Kara, Girls’ Generation, After School, T-ara, CN Blue, Beast, Sistar, F-T Island, 4 Minute, Rainbow, Secret, and Infinite.

Kara, Girls’ Generation, After School, and T-ara, are often highlighted in the media in Japan because these stunning bands have enabled the “Korean Wave” to grow and prosper in Japan. BoA laid the foundation stone and this stunning soloist is still going strong because her recent track “Milestone” was full of emotion and passion. Therefore, for all K-pop lovers in Tokyo and throughout Japan, this is a great chance to witness amazing music acts from South Korea and to view the buzzing nature of South Korean fashion.

The three day event is a must for all individuals who adore K-pop and the fashion scene.

 

http://www.mbcjapan.net/kiss/ – Website for full details of the event

http://www.liesangbong.com/gb/index.php

http://www.whoau.com/engCover/index.html

leejay@moderntokyotimes.com

http://moderntokyotimes.com

January 12, 2012

Kaori Muraji is a classical Japanese guitarist of refinement and beauty

Kaori Muraji is a classical Japanese guitarist of refinement and beauty

Walter Sebastian and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

Kaori Muraji was born in Tokyo in 1978 and from a very early age her father Noboru Muraji gave lessons to his daughter. Her talent was obvious and by the age of ten she began to be taught by the acclaimed guitarist Shinichi Fukuda. Kaori Muraji won many guitar competitions in Tokyo and in 1993 she performed at Tsuda Hall in the same city.

If you http://www.youtube.com/user/anselmonadir#p/search/0/VLZu0K9jL3U click on this link you can listen to the perfection and passion of Kaori Muraji. Therefore, even if your musical tastes are usually distant from classical guitar, it is clear that she can bridge this gap. Also, the setting on Anselmonadir Channel is extremely soothing because of the pleasant backdrop and you can find many videos which highlight Kaori Muraji on the link above.

Therefore, this talented child from Tokyo blossomed into a talented musical artist of international acclaim within the classical music community and much further afield. Kaori Muraji not only plays with sublime skill but her graceful manor and natural style appeals to the heart.

Also, Kaori Muraji’s performance of This Girl’s In Love With You” which was written by Burt Bacharach is extremely powerful and shows the vast nature of her sublime skills. In the link below the article provided by Anselmonadir Channel you can connect with another generation when you listen to “This Girl’s In Love With You.”

This aspect of Kaori Muraji is what sets her apart from the crowd because her talents feel natural when she performs music from different centuries and decades. Also, she can fuse her talent to transform any piece and then infuse it with aspects of her identity. Clearly talents like this are rare and for this reason her international appeal in cultured musical circles is highly valued.

DECCA for this reason signed an exclusive contract with Kaori Muraji in late 2003 because this company fully understood the unique nature of this exquisite musician from Japan. Since this period her international fame continues to blossom and the richness of her talent keeps on sweeping new admirers of their feet. Therefore, irrespective of your musical tastes, it is clear that Kaori Muraji can overcome the bias of individuals because her music can fit easily in any music collection.

Kaori Muraji stated that “I express what is transmitted from generation to generation. It’s just simple but so precious.” These words speak volumes about the stunning Kaori Muraji.

http://www.officemuraji.com/ – Please visit the official website of Kaori Muraji

http://www.youtube.com/user/anselmonadir (PLEASE VISIT Anselmonadir Channel)

http://www.youtube.com/user/anselmonadir#p/c/7875BF3220C70848/14/zwbK-Ja9NDM 

http://www.youtube.com/user/anselmonadir#p/c/7875BF3220C70848/13/xzYhP1IhThk

http://www.youtube.com/user/anselmonadir#p/c/7875BF3220C70848/22/Zq3rSwX4QHM

http://www.youtube.com/user/anselmonadir#p/c/7875BF3220C70848/1/2KKP5OB0HL4

leejay@moderntokyotimes.com

http://moderntokyotimes.com

January 8, 2012

Fashion in South Korea: Kpopsicle & the trends of Seoul, Tokyo and K-pop

Fashion in South Korea: Kpopsicle & the trends of Seoul, Tokyo and K-pop

Michel Lebon and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

Kpopsicle (http://kpopsicle.com) is a stunning South Korean fashion company which is based in South Korea and America. In recent years the buzzing nature of Seoul, Tokyo, Busan, Osaka, Kobe, and other major cities in South Korea and Japan have impacted internationally. This applies to Tokyo being one of the most fashionable cities in the world, the growing rise of K-pop (Korean pop music), kawaii culture, modern technology from both nations, anime, and a host of other factors.

Of course both nations are also famous because of their rich and unique cultures and Japan and South Korea share many common themes. Most notable, it was Koreans who introduced Buddhism to Japan and not surprisingly both nations also modernized rapidly because of the emphasis on education in both countries.

Kpopsicle (https://twitter.com/#!/kpopsicle_com/followers) fashion have harnessed the richness of Korean culture and put a heavy emphasis on clothes and accessories being made in Korea. The reason behind this is to guarantee extreme quality and to utilize the richness of fabrics, designs, and techniques in Korea, which creates such elegant clothes and accessories.

Therefore, Kpopsicle is aimed at providing stunning Korean style clothes, monitoring the fashion streets of Japan and the collective buzz of Asian style, in order to cater for the needs of modern and trendy women all over the world. At the same time, the company refuses to compromise with quality because this is the firm foundation of Kpopsicle. Given this, it is clear by the products on sale that the vibes of K-pop style, the streets of Seoul, Tokyo, Busan, Osaka, Kobe, and others can be felt, alongside the elegance of modern fashion which is highlighted through dramas on television in South Korea and Japan.

Throughout Asia K-pop stars are making headlines daily because of groups and soloists like BoA, Girls’ Generation, Kara, Kan Mi Youn, Orange Caramel (a sub unit from After School), G.Na, After School, A Pink, T-ara, Sistar, and many more. Also, K-pop is starting to expand in Europe and America and individuals like BoA know the international market. This musical vibe is also impacting on the fashion scene because all the above are fashion conscious and their images are being replicated and admired throughout Asia and further afield.

Kpopsicle is therefore utilizing high quality online fashion with the vibrant nature of the fashion industry in major cities in Asia, the K-pop music scene, Japanese street fashion, the buzz of Seoul, and fusing this with the creativity of Korean designers. The outcome of this is stunning fashion which suits the streets of Harajuku, Omotesando, Ebisu, Ikebukuro, Shinjuku, and other trendy areas in Tokyo, and the same applies to other areas of high octane fashion throughout Asia.

Also, the website of Kpopsicle is user-friendly and they highlight their fashion by showing all products from different angles. Not only this, they can be contacted easily via facebook, twitter, and other social mediums. Another nice aspect of Kpopsicle is that you can read important sections in English, Korean, Japanese, Chinese, French, and Spanish.

The elegant and stylish nature of Kpopsicle fashion speaks for itself by the images in this article and by viewing the website of Kpopsicle. Therefore, if you are a modern lady who adores fashion then Kpopsicle is only a click away and the same applies to any males who want to buy gifts for their girlfriends, sisters, friends, and so forth.

Kpopsicle harnesses many aspects of Asia with the outcome being a truly stunning international online fashion company.

http://kpopsicle.com  Kpopsicle – STUNNING FASHION AT THE CLICK OF A BUTTON

https://twitter.com/#!/kpopsicle_com/followers  Kpopsicle twitter account

ALL IMAGES FROM http://www.kpopsicle.com/ AND BELONG TO Kpopsicle

leejay@hotmail.com 

http://moderntokyotimes.com 

 
December 10, 2011

South Korean fashion: Kpopsicle, the rise of K-pop and Tokyo fashion

South Korean fashion: Kpopsicle, the rise of K-pop and Tokyo fashion

Sarah Deschamps and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

The nation of South Korea keeps on expanding internationally among the younger generation in Asia and now the sounds of K-pop are reaching Europe, North America, and South America. Naturally, the fashion scene will also be watched more closely and with exquisite fashion cities like Tokyo which is internationally famous, it is a great opportunity for South Korean fashion to enter this market and many other markets. Therefore, times are changing and will a South Korean “fashion wave” follow the “K-pop wave?”

If you check http://kpopsicle.com then you will see a South Korean fashion company which sells vibrant female fashion clothes online. The fashion available clearly matches all the latest styles and trends in the K-pop music scene. Therefore, you can see style, elegance, street wise fashion, sophisticated looks and a plethora of styles which suits the modern and trendy lady.

It is only natural that with so much focus on the K-pop scene that adorable fashion will follow on from this in South Korea. Kpopsicle therefore is meeting the hype and surpassing it because a mere glance at their website shows the trendy reality of this extremely fashionable company. Also, the photography of their fashion items from so many different angles is a clear winner and shows the care and style of this stunning fashion company.

In Japan the K-pop scene in Tokyo and other major cities like Osaka, is taking off big time because of groups like Kara, Girls’ Generation, T-ara, After School, Orange Caramel and a host of other groups. Also, BoA who was the first to make it big in Japan many years ago just released a lovely track called “Milestone” and the forerunner of K-pop in Japan highlights the sheer quality of this music scene.

Kpopsicle (http://kpopsicle.com) would certainly be cherished by the fashion conscious ladies in Japan who visit buzzing fashion districts in Tokyo, Osaka, and other fashionable cities like Kobe. Therefore, the trends on show on the website of this South Korean company would fit in well with the trendy districts of Tokyo, Osaka, Kobe, and throughout Japan.  This applies to Daikanyama, Ebisu, Harajuku, Ikebukuro, Jiyugaoka, Kichijoji, Nakano, Naka Meguro, Odaiba, Omotesando, Shimo Kitazawa, Shibuya, Shinjuku, Ueno, and other fashionable areas in Tokyo. Also, the vibrancy of Umeda and Namba in Osaka would fit in well with this fashion company because you have so many fantastic boutiques in these districts. Therefore, ladies from Tokyo, Osaka, and throughout Japan who adore fashion can feel and see the quality of South Korean fashion at the click of a button.

Of course the market of Kpopsicle is international and aimed at ladies all over the world who adore fashion. The K-pop angle is opening a new door to fashion companies from South Korea because of the visibility of K-pop stars and major markets like Tokyo could easily be tapped into.

After all, you only have to look at the singers and performers in K-pop which have hit the streets of so many nations. These ladies from South Korea in the K-pop scene are extremely beautiful and stylish and the fashion aspect is simply amazing. Therefore, South Korean fashion companies like Kpopsicle have a fantastic opportunity to further spread “Korean Cool” and to highlight the vibrant buzz coming out of South Korea.

K-pop groups and soloists like BoA, Girls’ Generation, Kara, Kan Mi Youn, T-ara, After School, Sistar, G.Na, A-Pink, Orange Caramel (a sub unit from After School) and a host of others are all part of the Korean wave. Given this, the visibility of fashion in South Korea is being witnessed in the streets of Seoul, Tokyo, Busan (Pusan), New York, London, Osaka, Jakarta, and many other major cities throughout the world.

Therefore, fashion companies like Kpopsicle are a click away via the internet, whereby the vibes and energy of South Korea can be seen by the adorable fashion on show. Simply put, this is a website which highlights the buzzing nature of the “Korean wave” and can connect fashion conscious ladies with stunning fashion at the click of a button.

http://kpopsicle.com Kpopsicle –  STUNNING FASHION AT THE CLICK OF A BUTTON

ALL IMAGES FROM http://www.kpopsicle.com/ AND BELONG TO Kpopsicle

K-pop groups and soloists

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fhseD2tRLUY  Girls’ Generation – Mr. Taxi

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KOcCNpdkjG4  Kan Mi Youn – “Paparazzi

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jxxoq7uqnbU Orange Caramel– “Shanghai Romance”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wYKhmcNo3C8&feature=related  BoA and new track “Milestone”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2bPhbYl7rV0  T-ara – “Like The First Time”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nli8waw_5vY  G.na – “Top Girl”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUVbf_aqU5k&ob=av2n  Sistar – “So Cool”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zYoYoBtLqOY&ob=av2n   Kara – “Step”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bD3LzPp6KDs   A Pink – “Wishlist”

http://moderntokyotimes.com

leejay@moderntokyotimes.com

December 7, 2011

K-pop in Japan: BoA releases the stunning new song Milestone

K-pop in Japan: BoA releases the stunning new song Milestone

Michel Lebon and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

BoA released her new track called “Milestone” and this song highlights the sheer quality of this talented lady from South Korea. The track was released on December 7 in Japan and the lyrics are truly beautiful. Therefore, if you are familiar with K-pop, new to K-pop or you are a lover of international music, then this is the track to listen to and add to your collection.

In recent times the K-pop scene is in increasing vogue throughout the world but BoA appeals internationally when she sticks to her strengths. This certainly applies to “Milestone” which is one of the classiest tracks to hit the music scene globally in 2011. Therefore, it is an honor for the Japanese market to have this track released in Japan.

The more BoA sings throughout the track you can feel her passion, emotion, and many truths within the lyrics. Also, being released in December suits this fantastic track because soon another year will end and then it will all start all over again in January.

The career of BoA in Japan replicates aspects of her career internationally. This applies to many highs and lows which is natural for the vast majority of talented artists who have so much to give. On top of this is the fusion of South Korea, America, and Japan respectively, when applied to her target market. Therefore, this would stretch any international talent but when BoA makes a track like “Milestone” then all is forgotten because this stunning lady can win people over easily.

In an earlier article by Modern Tokyo Times it was commented that “BoA is a fantastic singer who continues to grow and her new single which will be released on December 7 in Japan is one of her best. Therefore, the new single “Milestone” should hit the heights because the lovely melody is backed by her exquisite voice.”

“Milestone” is a million miles away from “Eat You Up” but her new single shows the exquisite talent of BoA.  Therefore, many Tokyoites and music lovers throughout Japan should certainly add this new track to their chart once it is released.”

“In truth, “Milestone” shows the real class of BoA and only her challenging schedule is preventing this stunning lady from reaching her true potential.”

Therefore, the track “Milestone” is a clear reminder to her fans in Tokyo and throughout Japan that BoA may sometimes seem distant from the music scene in this country, but at heart she is only one track away from igniting a strong spark. At the same time, tracks like “Milestone” are real gems because they appeal across all music spectrums and have no international boundaries.

Also, BoA and her rich talents highlight the vibrancy of K-pop because you have many amazing groups and soloists. Fans in South Korea remain close to their favorite soloists and groups and at the same time they are awaiting new talents to emerge. The same applies to music lovers in Japan and internationally because the depth of talent coming out of South Korea isn’t a flash in the pan. On the contrary, the style and sophistication is growing and the foundations which began with individuals like BoA is enhancing K-pop throughout the music world.

Overall, the music track by BoA called “Milestone” is a real gem and for people who want to feel passion and who love in depth lyrics, then this is a must buy irrespective of your nationality. After all, music can break down barriers when artists have so much panache and this certainly applies to BoA when she focuses on her abundant talent.

Simply put, the music track “Milestone” is an amazing track and one of the best of 2011 without a shadow of a doubt to come out of the international music scene.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wYKhmcNo3C8&feature=related BoA and new track “Milestone”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kd2Cvxrxpfc BoA and “Eat You Up”

 

http://moderntokyotimes.com

November 23, 2011

K-pop essentials for Tokyoites and the international market

K-pop essentials for Tokyoites and the international market

Michel Lebon and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

Korean Pop (K-pop) is growing in international esteem but for new people who are following this music scene then Modern Tokyo Times created an essential mix. Of course k-pop fans will either support or disagree with the reasons given but this is the nature of music. However, one thing that everyone will agree with who adores K-pop, is that this music scene is in the news and big time.

The order given does not denote preference because each song selected is deemed to be “essential” for newcomers to K-pop because lovers of this music scene will already have deep knowledge. However, the first track selected isn’t released until December 7 and this adds more spice.

Therefore, the first essential buy applies to BoA who is well known in Japan and her new track released on December 7 called “Milestone” is a classic track which plays to the strengths of this elegant lady. “Milestone” hits the heart because you can feel the passion of BoA and the lovely melody and exquisite voice works fantastically.

BoA hits every height with this track and shows the richness of such a talented lady and her avid followers are rewarded by this lovely tune. A must buy for people who want to feel the passion of K-pop and listen to a lady with a rich history.

The next essential tune is “Step” by Kara and clearly this group is loved in Tokyo and throughout Japan. How could you keep Kara out of any essential mix? Simply put, when you listen to Kara you can feel their international dimension. Kara, therefore, is a must for all individuals who want to feel the real vibrancy of K-pop.

Girls’ Generation consist of nine exquisite and elegant members and Taeyeon, Tiffany, Yuri, Jessica, Hyoyeon, Sunny, Sooyoung, Seohyun and Yoona, are highly loved in Japan just like Kara. The track called “Mr. Taxi” sums up the catchy and sultry nature of this K-pop group because they have style in abundance and this track is a must for all K-pop lovers in Japan.

Another essential buy is “Shanghai Romance” by Orange Caramel (a sub unit from After School) because Raina (Oh Hye Rin), Nana (Im Jin Ah) and Lizzy (Park Soo Young) look so stylish and natural together. They have a lovely sex appeal which is natural and charming and each individual plays to their strengths.

“Shanghai Romance” is a catchy tune and the singing, dancing, and image is truly wholesome. After School and Orange Caramel clearly have a bright future and the three stunning ladies who represent Orange Caramel have their own unique vibe and sound and highlight the diversity of K-pop.

The next essential tune is “Like The First Time” by T-ara because the adorable 7 girl group members are working their special charms in Japan. In truth, T-ara have played it gently on entering the Japanese market and older tracks highlight a different vibe and in time they will cross over their earlier work and create a new formula.

T-ara have evolved from five members to seven and these ravishing ladies will continue to win new hearts throughout South Korea, Japan, and internationally.  They are certainly adding to the “Korean Cool” image.

Another essential tune is “I Remember” by Bang Yong Guk which is extremely powerful and appeals internationally.  The video was over dramatic near the end but the track was fantastic and many new paths should open for Bang Yong Guk.

Future tracks by Bang Yong Guk will find it hard to surpass “I Remember” because it is that good. However, in saying this, his high octane nature and spirit may build on such a powerful tune. It will be interesting to see how he develops because all the signs look promising.

“Top Girl” by G.na is another essential buy because while the lyrics are so-so this extremely talented lady still pulls it out of the fire and creates a lovely track. This in itself shows the elegance and style of G.na because her individualistic style hits a positive nerve.

G.na appeals internationally because of her style, lovely image, interactive nature of her performance and other fine qualities. Therefore, “Top Girl” is a great tune which highlights the fine qualities of this exquisite lady.

The next group is Chocolat who have a bright future and “Syndrome” was selected because these beautiful ladies have a highly promising career and would work a treat in Japan. Therefore, this track was highlighted with an eye on the future and surely this group will grow and prosper.

“So Cool” by Sistar is another catchy tune to listen to but the video was a little negative and didn’t highlight their strengths. Despite this, these stunning ladies have a real buzz about them and clearly they work well together and Sistar have talent in abundance.

A Pink is a new group which is just reaching out but they have many fine qualities and their track “Wishlist” highlighted their individualistic talents. In truth, both writers of K-pop at Modern Tokyo Times are expecting a lot from A Pink because they have “elegance, poise, refinement and the glories of youth.”

Finally, but not least, is the lovely and delightful Kan Mi Youn whom both writers have a mega soft-spot.  Kan Mi Youn never lets you down and if you are new to K-pop then you are spoilt for choice because all her latest tracks have been fantastic.

“Paparazzi” is a lovely track and Kan Mi Youn is one of the classiest K-pop singers and like BoA both soloists are pure class. Therefore, “Paparazzi” is a must buy because Kan Mi Youn is an amazing singer and she is so talented.

The records selected were not based on order but seemed like a natural order and A Pink and Kan Mi Youn were chosen near the end for obvious reasons. Kan Mi Youn was selected like BoA to start because both ladies have hit the heights many times in the past and will continue to do so. Meanwhile, A Pink is just starting on their path and show great prospects.

Overall, if you are new to K-pop then check the many great South Korean websites online for latest news.  After all, the vibes coming from South Korea are reaching out to new people every day.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9J6zsvcvhaU  BoA – “Milestone”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KOcCNpdkjG4 Kan Mi Youn – “Paparazzi

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fhseD2tRLUY  Girls’ Generation – Mr. Taxi

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jxxoq7uqnbU Orange Caramel – “Shanghai Romance”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2bPhbYl7rV0 T-ara – “Like The First Time”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nHrx5dWxcJ4   Bang Yong Guk – I Remember

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nli8waw_5vY G.na – “Top Girl”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUVbf_aqU5k&ob=av2n Sistar – “So Cool”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zYoYoBtLqOY&ob=av2n  Kara – “Step”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bD3LzPp6KDs  A Pink – “Wishlist”

http://moderntokyotimes.com

leejay@moderntokyotimes.com

November 19, 2011

K-pop and new mini-album called “Snow Pink” by A Pink: Japan awaits

K-pop and new mini-album called “Snow Pink” by A Pink: Japan awaits

Michel Lebon and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

A Pink will release a new mini album called “Snow Pink” on November 22 and it will be interesting to see how they have progressed. The group which hails from South Korea consists of Park Chorong, Yoon Bomi, Son Naeun, Jung Eunji, Hong Yookyung, Kim Namjoo and Oh Hayoung. They are relatively new to the music scene and under the wing of A Cube Entertainment which is a sister group of Cube Entertainment.

Obviously virtually all groups that are new to the scene take time to adjust and teething problems is only natural. Also, the majority of members of the group are extremely young and if A Pink has already caught your ear, it will be intriguing for all fans to see their future steps.

At the moment their fan base will be more limited to the younger generation but a few years down the line and you will witness major changes. The single “Please just let us love” was very catchy and showed great promise and I am sure that many people took notice.

The style of “Please just let us love” was interactive and you could feel the passion and unlike“I don’t know,” this single appealed to a broad spectrum of ages. Also, it highlighted huge potential and the innocence and confusion of youth but in all its natural beauty.

The track “Wishlist” was also delightful because you could see each individual and feel their warmth and cohesion. In truth, I am expecting a lot from A Pink because in the two tracks that I have mentioned, it is clear that they have elegance, poise, refinement and the glories of youth.

Also, while K-pop continues to catch the imagination in Tokyo, Osaka, and other major cities in Japan, and in other nations, it is hoped that new groups will create their own style and image. At the moment, this certainly applies to the fine tuning by A Cube Entertainment because these lovely young ladies already have a vibrant image based on passion and collectiveness.

Of course, in time individualism will develop more and more and I am sure that many new steps will be taken. This applies to reaching out to the Japanese market and much further afield while maintaining a firm base in South Korea.

The track “I don’t know” would certainly work a treat in the Japanese market but “Wishlist” provides a more international appeal and the same applies to“Please just let us love.”  The latter two tracks have a style which connects with people internationally and in time A Pink will interact more with the international side of their music.

Their fans are keenly awaiting the new mini-album “Snow Pink” and given past performances, I am sure that this will enhance their growing reputation.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oI6sSDci0gg “Please just let us love” by A Pink

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bD3LzPp6KDs “Wishlist” by A Pink

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RWaT201-M3U&feature=related “I don’ know” by A Pink

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November 13, 2011

K-pop music: Orange Caramel and the Japanese market

K-pop music: Orange Caramel and the Japanese market

Michel Lebon and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

Orange Caramel certainly fit in well with kawaii culture in Japan and this K-pop group which is a sub-unit from After School continues to grow. BoA and Kan Mi Youn, alongside other talented individuals from South Korea, have international appeal in abundance and Orange Caramel is going in the right direction because each new track is creating a new buzz.

Obviously K-pop groups like After School, Kara, Girls’ Generation (SNSD), BoA, T-ara, and many others, will continue to focus on the Japanese market while remaining in tune with the vibes of South Korea. Therefore, it is nice to see the natural progression of Orange Caramel because they provide a wholesome image and with luck they won’t go down the over-the-top sexual image.  

Raina (Oh Hye Rin), Nana (Im Jin Ah) and Lizzy (Park Soo Young) look natural together and since they formed their image is very different from After School and clearly it is working. Therefore, the track “Shanghai Romance” highlighted a lovely image which was wholesome, cute, stylish and warm.

T-ara is another K-pop group which is showing great promise in Japan and in time both T-ara and Orange Caramel should continue to blossom and of course the same applies to After School. Currently Kara and Girls’ Generation are very popular in Japan and in other nations and T-ara made a big impression when they debuted in Japan.

The delightful BoA will also remind Japan about her rich talents because her new single called “Milestone” which will be released on December 7 is a real gem. Therefore, K-pop is certainly in the driving seat and many Tokyoites and people throughout Japan are hoping that BoA and Orange Caramel will focus even more on the Japanese market.

Orange Caramel can also learn greatly from BoA and Kan Mi Youn because these two stunning ladies hit the heights when they were very young. Today Kan Mi Youn continues to flourish and her last few tracks were full of energy and “Milestone” by BoA is one of her best tracks ever.

It is also important that K-pop groups and soloists show a rich variety and certainly Orange Caramel have their own natural vibe. This will enhance the richness of K-pop in Japan and of course in South Korea where these fantastic ladies come from.

The image of Orange Caramel certainly fits in well with kawaii culture and the energy of Harajuku in Tokyo. Therefore, their fan base will continue to grow and flourish and this will also be a huge benefit for After School.

It will be interesting to see how Orange Caramel develops and hopefully they will stick to their natural, wholesome and cute image alongside catchy tunes.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jxxoq7uqnbU Orange Caramel

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I3u9f8LTEiI Orange Caramel

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m5db5p5i0sE Orange Caramel

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9J6zsvcvhaU BoA and “Milestone”

Images wikia

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October 29, 2011

K-pop in Japan: BoA and her new song Milestone set to hit the heights

K-pop in Japan: BoA and her new song Milestone set to hit the heights

Michel Lebon and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

BoA will release a lovely track called “Milestone” and her fans will be so happy to hear her lovely voice and this powerful track should do really well. K-pop artists are now in vogue but for artists like BoA and Kan Mi Youn they hit the heights at a very young age and continue to impress by their changing styles and sheer quality.

“Milestone” will be released in Japan on December 7 and BoA will certainly hog the headlines because of her rich following.  The track itself is very emotional and the melody is pleasing on the ear. Also, like always her voice blesses the richness of the lyrics and the lovely melody.

Boa Kwon (Kwon Boa) adopted the name BoA and despite her young years this lady is multi-talented and truly international. The Beat of Angel (BoA) is just that with her angelic voice and classy style.

BoA was discovered by SM Entertainment and like always they nurtured the extremely beautiful young lady with an adorable voice. After her debut album ID; Peace B was released in South Korea she ventured into the Japanese market in 2002 with her debut album Listen To My Heart.

The international nature of BoA led her to debut in America in 2008 with the single “Eat You Up” and this hip track suited the American market. The video style was clearly designed for the market in hand and this was followed in 2009 by her first English language album titled BoA. However, in Japan the growing power of K-pop in mega-cites like Tokyo, Osaka, Kobe, and throughout Japan, means that the new track “Milestone” should reach the heights because it is one of her best tracks and BoA’s history in Japan is deep.

The Japanese music market was clearly a great boost to her early career because the album Valenti in 2003 sold more than 1.2 million copies in the second largest music market in the world. Her next album in Japan called Love & Honesty in 2004 did well but not like the album Valenti. However, BoA’s compilation album in 2005 called Best of Soul did very well and more than one million copies were sold.

The changing nature of BoA and the complexity of different music markets meant that between 2004 and 2005 the number of albums sold from new material had gone down in South Korea. Also, her venture into China was mixed but BoA was still very young and with no settled style then a tad of uncertainty was confusing some of her original fans.

It must be remembered that Boa Kwon was born on November 5 in 1986 and in many other music markets, for example in the United Kingdom, it is rare to have someone so young who enters so many challenging markets.  Any misfortune of sales, despite still being good, should go down to the people who guided her because not only was BoA entering challenging and diverse markets but the changing nature of her style was creating teething problems.

In many ways her sixth album in Japan called The Face in 2008 saw a new confident BoA because now she was taking control over the music she performed. Therefore, with her rich and diverse background before this period the final pieces of the “real” BoA began to emerge.

However, the one weak spot was that by not focusing on one main market, then her sales and fan base was confused. Again, this would not have happened with a major British and Japanese singer/group because they would have a firm base. Therefore, in 2010 her album called Identity suffered in Japan because sales were weak compared with the startling success of Valenti in 2003.

Clearly, her move to America had mixed results and BoA was overstretched when it came to maintaining a firm base in America, Japan and South Korea respectively. Therefore, you had a highly talented K-pop artist who had matured into a stunning young lady and who was blessed with a lovely voice, however, something was amiss.

After all, BoA couldn’t match her early success in Japan despite the BoA of 2010 being vastly superior to her early period. Yet 2010 did show that her fans in South Korea remained loyal because her album Hurricane Venus did well.

BoA is a fantastic singer and continues to grow and her new single which will be released on December 7 in Japan is one of her best. Therefore, the new single “Milestone” should hit the heights because the lovely melody is backed by her exquisite voice.

“Milestone” is a million miles away from “Eat You Up” but her new single shows the exquisite talent of BoA.  Therefore, many Tokyoites and music lovers throughout Japan should certainly add this new track to their chart once it is released. 

In truth, “Milestone” shows the real class of BoA and only her challenging schedule is preventing this stunning lady from reaching her true potential.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9J6zsvcvhaU BoA and new track “Milestone”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kd2Cvxrxpfc BoA and “Eat You Up”

http://leejay@moderntokyotimes.com

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