Duffy savors fruits of success

| Mar 27, 2009

Duffy savors fruits of success

“Half of my quarter of a century belongs to music, so I never belonged to anything else,” says Welsh songstress Duffy. “I feel very able and ready!” The blonde bombshell was in Tokyo for her first full-length live show in Japan — at Shibuya ...

No constrictions on BoA's ambitions

Mar 20, 2009

No constrictions on BoA's ambitions

“It has always been my dream to debut in America!” BoA announces gleefully. “Every Asian artist has that dream of Hollywood or the Billboard chart, and this is the perfect time to go to America.” This week, South Korean singer BoA becomes the latest ...

Morning Musume not ready to graduate yet

| Mar 13, 2009

Morning Musume not ready to graduate yet

Most artists dream of longevity, but few are afforded significant time in the limelight. The paradox of all-girl group Morning Musume, 12 years since they began, is the enforced time-limit its members face in order for the group to remain forever young. Generation eight ...

Towa Tei wallows in optimism for art's sake

Feb 13, 2009

Towa Tei wallows in optimism for art's sake

“In Tokyo, there is too much information,” says famed Japanese producer and DJ Towa Tei. “Even if you don’t want to listen to music, you are raped into listening to something you don’t like at the convenience store. So I try to go somewhere ...

Coma-Chi 'Red Naked'

Feb 6, 2009

Coma-Chi "Red Naked"

Even the most optimistic critic could be excused for approaching with trepidation the major-label debut for one of only a handful of domestic female rappers. But fears that 24-year-old Coma-Chi is about to deliver a pale imitation of a genre exhausted in the early ...

J-pop starlet Yuna Ito gets her groove back

Nov 21, 2008

J-pop starlet Yuna Ito gets her groove back

“I got my heart broken for the first time,” laments Yuna Ito, “at the unbelievable age of 24!” Hearing her vibrant new single, “Koi wa Groovy²” (“Love is Groovy²”), it would be hard to guess that such an experience would be the inspiration. “It’s ...

You and whose Ami?

Nov 20, 2008

You and whose Ami?

When singer and actress Ami Suzuki appears in the TBS drama “Love Letter” this month, she’ll finally realize the end of a remarkable comeback. The toast of 1999, when she sold 3.2 million CDs (not to mention DVDs and so on) as a 16-year-old ...

Understanding Ueto, Japan's reluctant star

Nov 13, 2008

Understanding Ueto, Japan's reluctant star

“I never wished to become an actress or a star who performs on TV,” explains Aya Ueto, the prominent model and actress. “I took this role because my management gave it to me.” The role in question is that of Alice Mitazono, a wealthy ...

Now in their 50s, Def Leppard are still ferocious

Oct 31, 2008

Now in their 50s, Def Leppard are still ferocious

Legendary English rock band Def Leppard brought the circus back to town last week. Paired up with fellow hair-metal survivors Whitesnake, the group began a four-date Japan tour with two nights at the prestigious Nippon Budokan in central Tokyo on Oct. 23 and 24. ...