Japanese Manhole covers T-shirts from 47Regions
Japan is a place of so many different and wonderful things to do and see. A lot of times when we are planning our trips to Japan we decide not always to have our whole day Read more
Kizuna Japanese subscription box
This is a promotional post.
We were offered the opportunity to try a new subscription box from Kizuna Box from Japan. Of course we jumped at the chance. We were given the option of two different boxes, Read more
Sakura Matsuri Stockholm – Cherry Blossom Festival
On April 22nd was the annual cherry blossom hanami festival in Stockholm (“Körsbärsblommans Dag”), Sweden. It's an event organized by the Japanese Association, and we were very happy to see that they - once Read more
Top Japanese places to visit in London
In this post we have collected our top Japanese places to visit in London. The city has so many places that are connected to Japan in one way or another. In our top Read more
Best art, crafts and stationery shops in Tokyo
As a person who love all things art and crafts I've hunted down the best shops that I could find during my travels in Tokyo. Here's a guide to my personal favourites. Read more
Backstreet Boys are an American formed boy band, but nowadays are more seen as a vocal harmony group. The band originated from Orlando, Florida. They were first formed back 1993 and all five original members of the band are still active in the band to this day. Backstreet Boys, or as there are known to their fans – BSB, are A. J. McLean, Howie Dorough, Nick Carter, Kevin Richardson and Brian Littrell. Kevin is the only member of the band that had a break to work on other projects, but he returned to the band in 2012. On many of their tours they have played in Japan and during their latest tour (In a World Like This Tour) they performed a total of 11 gigs all over Japan.
The video to Backstreet Boys single Bigger was filmed on the 2nd of October when the band was on a mini tour in Japan to promote their album This Is Us, that the song is included on. The song was recorded in Sweden at the being of 2009. Bigger had its music video premiere via the Backstreet Boys official homepage on the 2nd of November and the single was then released on the 29th November 2009. The video, directed by Frank Borin and filmed in Tokyo, shows different shots of some of Tokyo’s busy streets. The group can also be seen at a maid cafe, singing with all the maids in the background. A games arcade is also shortly seen. Other places that are featured are one of the many temples that can be found in Tokyo, and the band singing karaoke with some Japanese people – I guess just a normal day out in Tokyo for the Backstreet Boys.
We made our way to the O2 Empire Shepherds Bush a couple of hours before the show. We knew it would take a long time to get there because of a major tube strike in most parts of London. We managed to jump on a very cramped bus that would take us over to Shepherds Bush. We seemed to be stuck on that bus forever, passing a lot of stops where other KPP fans were waiting to get on a bus that wasnt full already. I hope they got there in the end.
Making our way there
We arrived in time and not thinking about the queues that might be outside the venue we got a bite to eat. Fed and happy we found our way over to the venue. We had to walk to the end of a very long line to get in, all the way round to the back of the venue, queuing along a residence street. There were two queues going separate ways, one for for the stalls and one for standing. In the queues we saw several girls dressed up to mimic Kyary Pamyu Pamyu’s many outfits from her music videos. There were also lots of girls dressed in Lolita clothes and people dressed in other alternative styles. It was a real mixture of people, teens, adults and families with young children. One thing that we all had in common was the love for KPP and her music.
It wasn’t that bad to wait, not compared to last year’s show, where we were had to stand outside in cold rain and snow. At least this time the weather was nice and it was quite warm outside. Everyone was in high spirits as the queues started to move to the doors around 19ish. In no time at all our tickets had been checked and we were in.
Inside the venue
Inside they sold t-shirts, hoodies and scarfs. But we didn’t stop for that, as we were on our way up to the first level to find some seats, because it the tickets were unspecified. We were luckily enough to grab two seats next to one another on the back row with a great view. Most of all the other seats where occupied before we got there and the people that came in after us either had to split up or got standing places, which in a way was good to because there you could dance if you felt like it. Then we waited, with the other 2200 in the sold out venue, for the show to start.
The stage was much more advanced than the previous concert Kyary performed in London. Last time she said she wanted to come back again with a more lavish show, and she kept her promise. The stage was designed as a children’s playroom with storybooks, bulding blocks, popcorn and a big teddy bear. The style suited her perfectly. She also had a large screen on stage, where a video was played during one of the breaks and outfit changes.
Kyary treated us to a show packed with hits like Hitachi, Candy Candy and Tsukematsukeru. The crowd cheered, sang and danced throughout the show, and when she sang the hits Fashion Monster and PonPonPon so it was clear that Kyary Pamyu Pamyu has a very strong fan base in UK.
Last time Kyary performed in London she only spoke Japanese during the show, and an interpreter translated what she said. But this time she had no interpreter with her. Instead, she spoke a little English, using notes written down on a piece of paper which she read aloud from. She also spoke some Japanese this time too, and judging by the reations of the audience it seemed like most understood what she was saying.
During the show, she wore four different outfits: first she was wearing some kind of furry creation, then she switched to a cute pink dress and bow in her hair. Another change of clothes and now she had a different color of her dress, and an even bigger bow in her hair. The final change of outfit was when she was cheered back on stage again, and now she wore a teeshirt, a skirt and bunny ears. In addition to doing a few more songs, she took the opportunity to have her picture taken with her dancers, and with the audience in the background.
The last song of the evening was Chan Chaka Chan Chan, a perfect song to end the show, with the lyrics going “see you, see you, see you again. See you, see you, see you next time.”
The next lot of TV adverts from Japanese TV has arrived. In this collection of TV adverts we find some of the following: an advert from mobile phone opertator AU featuring Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, a group of penguins playing PSVita, some of the girls from pop group AKB48 playing a dance game for the Wii U, plus a lot more. Enjoy!
As always, please check out this YouTube user for more adverts: http://www.youtube.com/user/JPCMHD Also check out older posts with Japanese TV adverts under the media category to the right of this post.
Yesterday the annual Swedish Cherry Blossom Festival in Stockholm took place in Kungsträdgården. We got lucky this year, because the cherry trees were actually still in bloom. The weather was fantastic, sunny and warm, and the park was filled with loads of people.
On stage, they had a lolita fashion show, a cosplay show, dance performances, choires and more.
A company called KIKI was there, selling tenugui, beauitful hand printed Japanese hand towels made of cotton.
First Leaf Ikebana, an ichiyo ikebana school, had mini lessons, taught people how make flower arrangements the ikebana way. They have courses and workshops throughout the year.
Mangakai was there too. Thery’re a manga and anime association where the members meet up and draw manga, watch anime, play games and socialise together.
And then there were many other sellers there. Yuko Ono Sthlm was selling beautiful tea caddies and lovely Japanese tea, like gyokuru, yame sencha, fukamushi sencha and kaoribo hojicha. You could also find stalls selling clothes, food, snacks, cute items (Totoro!) and more.
Other stalls included igo (a game, pictured above), origami (paper folding), Blueberry (study Japanese in Japan), Japanspecialisten (arranged trips to Japan), Japanska Skolan and more. It was a great event, and we are already looking forward to next year!
The cherry trees are currently in bloom in Stockholm, Sweden – it’s hanami season! To view them you have to hurry up, because they dont bloom for very long. If you are in the Stockholm area at the moment, make sure to visit Kungsträdgården, because this is a beautiful sight that you don’t want to miss.
Cherry Flower Day / Sakura Matsuri
Like previous years, there will be a Cherry Flower Day celebration in Stockhom this year as well. It will take place on April 26 in Kungsträdgården. The Japanese Society (Japanska Föreningen) is arranging it and there will be a drum show, cosplay, lolita fashion show, dance shows and lots more. Last year was pretty awesome, our report from it can be found here: Hanami in Stockholm