Japanese Tour De Force Episode 2

Me and the Soul Brothers

We have a deal in Japan with BBQ records for the Japanese version of « If These Walls Could Talk. »  Twin brothers Take and Tomo own the label and  made sure we were well taken care of.  They were throwing a party and invited us out …… I have to talk about this club…..  We got out of the cab and the bouncer comes over and tells us to be very quiet (like vewy, vewy quiet).  I hear absolutely no music…. I see a very tame restaurant with a few diners….  we go in and one level down we walk into what seems to be a house party – a few people smoking, drinking, music but nothing too crazy….. down another flight of stairs and WTH?!  I see like 30 disco balls and the floor is vibrating… another level down…. (we are now 7 levels below the sea) and there are like 600 people getting’ it in!!!!  The DJ was killing it!

— BUT maaan can they can smoke!! …. so much that my eyes were burning and I actually had to leave to get oxygen — not air — oxygen…  We left and went to Roppongi,  a tourist area that looks at lot like Time Square (litter and all), and bounced from club to club until morning… at which point we stopped to have Udon in bowls you could wash clothes in, with soup ladles for spoons.

No you see it….. Now you don’t…… ‘TWAS GOOD!

Well… as much as I would have liked to go out every day, this was still a job, so I made sure to get a lot of vocal rest BUT…….I had one day off and I was determined to see as much as I could, so I set off on the JR which is basically the subway — but CLEAN and EFFICIENT.  I ended up linking with an artist friend of mine, Hiro-A-Key (look out for the Collabo), and he gave me the official tour….  I could go over the whole site seeing thing but that was really just  a backdrop for the convo we had.  We spent the day talking about music (of course), frustrations, relationships, culture…. and the thing that I walked away with most was…. we are really all the same.  Just as we are all breathing oxygen the world over (other than in that club)…  we are all dealing with the same principle issues.

The final 2 shows were at Motion Blu in an area called Yokohama.  The drive there made me realize how little I had seen to this point.  After the shows, we headed out to a Jam session — my first… Lalah Hathaway was in the audience and her voice and I have an ongoing love affair so…… I got on the mic right after her thinking maybe some of the magic from her gene pool would rub off on me (jokes….kinda).  The band jammed all night, I rocked a freestyle and we closed out our night rocking Love Revolution to a crowd full of « Acti-Fists. »

I left the club at around 6am and went to meet up with the label heads to get what I was told would be the best sushi I would ever have…….. and it was!!!!  @ The fish market they are basically making your sushi with fish pulled straight from the sea.  My Sushi chef could tell I wasn’t from there (not sure how) and was hitting me with everything he could– and it was GREAT!!

All that was left was leaving and I figured without the tranquilizer my best bet was staying up 30 hours prior….. and you know what I was right!!!  Slept through that flight!

I have to return and see more of the culture…. This was just a taste, but it definitely left me hungry for more.


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