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Steve McClure

Steve McClure has lived in Tokyo since 1985. Formerly Billboard magazine’s Asia Bureau Chief, he now publishes the online music-industry newsletter McClureMusic.com.

For Steve McClure's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

And the 'nice try' award goes to . . .

| May 29, 2002

And the 'nice try' award goes to . . .

It is my sad duty to report that the inaugural MTV Video Music Awards Japan, held May 24 at the Tokyo International Forum, was a less than spectacularly successful affair. The event was plagued by some very lame presenters, technical glitches and missed cues. And ...

For Utada, third time's, uh, same-ish

| May 22, 2002

For Utada, third time's, uh, same-ish

Set for a June 19 release, Hikaru Utada's third album, "Deep River," doesn't contain any major surprises, staying true to the pop/R&B synthesis that has proven so successful for the singer since she burst onto the scene with her debut single, "Automatic/Time Will Tell," ...

Misora's ship has come in

| May 15, 2002

Misora's ship has come in

Die-hard fans of the late Hibari Misora -- the greatest enka diva ever -- may want to book passage on the "Queen Hibari Misora cruise," a unique, if somewhat morbid, maritime event being held June 12 and 13 to mark the 14th anniversary of ...

Go West, PuffyAmiYumi!

| May 8, 2002

Go West, PuffyAmiYumi!

If you've ever seen pop duo Puffy perform live, you know that a key part of their shows is their low-key, slightly ironic between-songs banter. So naturally Yumi Yoshimura is worried that her inability to speak English will make it hard to enjoy that ...

| Apr 24, 2002

Two men and a poor baby

I have a thang, as Isaac Hayes would say, for Yuki Koyanagi. Maybe it's her sultry pout. Maybe it's her bleached-blonde hair. Or it could be her gloriously trashy fashion sense. Koyanagi burst onto the J-pop scene in September 1999 with the single "Anata no ...

Happy End all over again

| Apr 17, 2002

Happy End all over again

British rock band Oasis will be playing live in Tokyo on May 23. But exactly where is a mystery. Oasis are one of five acts (the others are Jay-Z, Dragon Ash, RIP Slyme and Rize) scheduled to perform at that day's MTV Super Dry Live ...

In a sentimental mood

| Apr 10, 2002

In a sentimental mood

For Westerners of a certain age, the '60s were an era of social and cultural ferment, when the Vietnam War, the Pill, rock music, drugs and the sexual revolution shook the foundations of society. In Japan, however, a "can-do" spirit prevailed as the postwar ...

Still chasing their dream

| Apr 3, 2002

Still chasing their dream

And then there were two . . . Dreams Come True keyboard player Takahiro Nishikawa's announcement on March 24 that he had left the pop trio wasn't all that surprising. For a long time Nishikawa had been very much the odd man out in ...

Groove is in the House

| Mar 27, 2002

Groove is in the House

Ambitious is the word that comes to mind when looking at the publicity material for the inaugural New York-Tokyo Music Festival. Scheduled to take place in the Big Apple May 23-26, the event will feature live performances by a variety of Japanese artists, including ...