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Namie Amuro: Celebrating J-pop's first queen

Sep 12, 2018

Namie Amuro: Celebrating J-pop's first queen

by Patrick ST. Michel

For millions of Japanese music fans in the 1990s, Namie Amuro wasn't just the Heisei Era's defining pop star, she was someone they grew up with. This relationship is clear in the year-long documentary series, "Finally," which has been streaming on Hulu since the 40-year-old ...

When 'Amuraa' ruled Japan

Sep 12, 2018

When 'Amuraa' ruled Japan

by May Masangkay

When pop diva Namie Amuro took the music scene by storm, she not only captivated throngs of girls and women with her performances but also inspired their fashion, spawning the "Amuraa" look of the mid-1990s. Clad in a miniskirt and thick-soled boots, with her hair ...

Minyo Crusaders sing a song from every corner of Japan

Aug 30, 2018

Minyo Crusaders sing a song from every corner of Japan

by Alex Martin

A muffled bass line is soon matched by Katsumi Tanaka's staccato electric guitar riff loosely emulating a shamisen. Congas and timbales start grooving in the rhythm of cumbia before the horn section dives in, setting the stage for Fredy Tsukamoto to belt out a ...

British rockers Reef make a revelatory return

Aug 29, 2018

British rockers Reef make a revelatory return

by Oscar Boyd

The thriving British music scene of the mid-1990s was awash with techno, Britpop and newer genres like jungle and trip-hop. When Reef burst onto the scene, the group's heavier style of rock must have felt like an actual oasis to some listeners. The band's debut ...

Haruomi Hosono: 'I never tried to be a pioneer'

Aug 23, 2018

Haruomi Hosono: 'I never tried to be a pioneer'

by Paul Fisher

Haruomi Hosono is widely regarded as one of the most important figures of Japanese popular music over the past 50 years. The grandson of the only Japanese passenger and survivor aboard the Titanic, he was born in Tokyo in 1947. From the end of the ...