Friday, May 4, 2012


As you could probably guess, they play Japanese music here (so weird, I know!) It took me awhile to actually start listening to some of the songs that play on the radio and in the weight room. But once I did, I discovered something amazing. They sing in English. But in random, sporadic intervals. A typical song goes something like this....

Japanese japanese japanese........YOU CAN DO IT.....japanese japanese japanese japanese....NOTHING CAN STOP YOUUUUUUUU.....japanese japanese japanese.

THE band. You can see Willie Nelson....
At first, I did a double take and was making sure I wasn't going crazy. If there's one thing I've noticed, in Japan, I have a radar for English or anything non-Japanese. We took a trip to the city on one of our days off and I managed to find quite possibly every "foreigner" in it. You hear English here and are immediately scoping the scene to find the source. So far the funniest of this "scoping" was also on our day off. We went into the city without our translator to go shopping and site-seeing. Unfortunately for my bank account, a H&M opened here. Since everyone fits into baby Gap sizes here, the bigger aka normal sizes are left for me to swoop up and give a home. After we went shopping, we decided to go exploring a bit and found a park. We were looking for food and it looked like they had a festival going on, so we wandered over. There, we found a stage with a band doing a sound check. Normal, right? Uh....WRONG. We discovered the band was the most RANDOM group of American (maybe) men known to mankind. Singing was a boy who looked about 18 wearing a vest and newsboy cap. Playing the guitar was a man who was clearly inspired by Willie Nelson and his persona, since he did his best to replicate the exact thing. Playing the drums was a somewhat goth/emo man. He may have actually been Japanese but he was too far away to see. Pretty sure he was obsessed with the anime cartoons that are popular here since much of his outfit reflected it. I didn't get to see the fourth member of the band because just at that moment, me and Wiggins were starting to be followed by a security guard. Apparently you needed a ticket (whoops). We kind of wandered around in a zig-zag path to see if he was following us. Sure enough, he followed us straight out of the park, without food (tragic). 

I have noticed a pattern of the English that's present in their songs. It's all inspirational. The word "fight" and "love" are used a lot. It makes you kind of want to sing along but then it starts back to Japanese and you're left mumbling (hasn't happened to me or anything....).

There are random places that play non-Japanese songs, though. I've noticed the trend to play The Beatles in all hotels. This makes me extremely happy. I mean, who DOESN'T like The Beatles?! If you don't like them, you don't have a soul. Point blank. A lot of businesses actually play The Beatles. And not just "Hey Jude" and "Can't Buy Me Love" but some of their less popular songs. Beatles Heaven. 
They also love Disney music. And Disney in general. Again, I'm in heaven. These are two of my most favorite things in the whole wide world. Disney and The Beatles. You could kind of, maybe, possibly, somewhat say I'm a Disney freak. I think it's a little overboard....but then again, people think me owning every movie ever made is overboard. I call it dedication. Anyways, they play ALL sorts of Disney music. Techno Disney. Instrumental Disney. Disney in commercials. Japanese versions of Disney. EVERYTHING. 
Some of the girls are starting to get into popular American music. In fact, I'm almost positive that they type "Popular American music" into a search engine and click download all. Their choices are all across the board. The first week I was here, I forgot my iPod in the weight room so I was listening to their music over the speakers. It started off with Japanese songs. A random Black Eyed Peas song was thrown in there (they LOVE them here). And then...........Lay it Down by Lloyd. Seriously.......
I had no words. I tried telling them it's a dirty song but they think "dirty" is good since we use it in baseball terms. As in "that pitch is dirty." So they think I love the song and insist on playing it at random times. Yay.......
A couple other songs they love playing.....
Shots - LMFAO (unedited....yeh it's awkward blasting it in the park with little children)
Starships - Nikki Minaj
Anything by Black Eyed Peas (unfortunately)
A couple songs by Ludacris

Pretty much everything is unedited. Obviously, they can't understand a damn thing. But it's definitely awkward walking through a public place and hearing people drop f-bombs over the radio and no one flinches. 
Most of the stores and malls play American music that's popular right now. Which makes for a lovely impromptu karaoke sessions. I mean everyone already stares at me here, so I figure I can do pretty much whatever I want. Might as well give them a show if they insist on creeping and sneaking looks at the tall, crazy American. My favorite moment thus far was when Call Me Maybe came on in the store. I literally had a mini heart attack and starting dancing and singing. People, obviously, thought I was crazy. But I didn't really notice that everyone was staring until after my spazz attack/performance. I love that song. Luckily it's not playing on every radio station as I know it is back in the states, so it has yet to get old for me. Brings a smile to my face every time! 
Basically, our shopping trips have proven to double as karaoke sessions, to the dismay and adoration of fellow shoppers. They love Americans here. We can do no wrong! Lord knows someone would've told me to shut up by now in the states. So, I'm going to take full advantage of singing in public while here in Japan. 

xox Jordan!

1 comment:

  1. I love the visual that popped into my head of you singing in the ladies' section of the department store...