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Posts Tagged ‘Japan’

Gotta Look Sharp.

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Retro Rocker, Harajuku, Tokyo, circa 2009.

[Found here.]

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Yoneji Inamura’s Contribution To The World: 20,000 Beetles

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Although [Yoneji] Inamura created several sculptures out of beetles, he spent 6 years in the 1970s constructing this one, which has become his masterpiece and the largest sculpture he ever made. When it was done he donated it to the city.

The sculpture, made from rhinoceros beetles, winged jewel beetles, drone beetles, longhorn beetles and other types of local beetles, depicts the senju kannon bosatsu (1000-armed bodhisattva), a popular Buddhist deity in Japan.

[Click on the smaller images to enlarge. More here, found here. Somewhat related posts here.]

Block Parties Here Are Incredible.

Monday, 20 March 2017

“Hey, Bob! What’s going on this weekend?”
“The Stones are coming back again.”
“Aw, crap.”

“The [Nankai] Hawks were sold and moved to Fukuoka City in 1988 or 1989. Since the stadium was abandoned, the City of Osaka, working with a trade group, turned it into a giant outdoor home show with rows of various model homes from several construction companies.

“If I remember correctly, the houses were a failure, as most Japanese in the greater Osaka area were not interested in western style housing and the quality of construction was not up to their expectations. I think the stadium was finally demolished in the late ’90s.”

[Found in here, additional images and story found here and here.]

Monday Morning Puzzle

Monday, 21 November 2016

trapped-bowls

The photo was taken after an earthquake in the Tottori Prefecture on October 21st, in a hotel owned by the Kishida family.

Given:
Cabinet with glass panels, earthquake-shifted valuable bowls.
Task:
Extract the bowls intact without breaking any glass.

There are some great solutions offered, like this one:

Open the cabinet door just enough to allow the nozzle of an expandable insulation foam canister. Fill up the cabinet with expansive foam, wait for it to set. Open the door and chip off the insulation with a screwdriver.

I don’t know who posted that solution, but it’s brilliant.

[Found here.]

Saturday Matinee – Ghost Theme Park, Are You Popular?, Ray Charles & Tommy Emmanuel

Saturday, 29 October 2016

The second or third Happiest Place on Earth.

Japanese theme park Nara Dreamland was built in 1961 but was permanently closed in 2006 due to declining attendance. At one time this place was filled with laughter; now it’s just spooky. This is what it looks like after years of neglect. [via].

“Are You Popular?” I wish I’d seen this 1947 PSA when I was in High School. All my dates could have been spatulas and 2x4s.

Ray Charles performs at an elementary school in London in a 1964 film “Ballad In Blue” [via].

Tommy Emmanuel is amazing. No formal training, can’t read or write music, yet his sound is incredible with an unmistakable Chet Atkins influence. He reminds me of Leo Kottke.

Have a great weekend, folks. There’s more to come.

Saturday Matinee – Chet Atkins, Louis Armstrong, Joe MacDonald & The New Orleans Jazz Hounds

Saturday, 18 June 2016

Chet Atkins‘ version of the jazz classic “Muskrat Ramble.” This is perfect early morning sunrise roadtrip music. From Wiki:

“Muskrat Ramble” is a jazz composition written by Kid Ory in 1926. It was first recorded on February 26, 1926, by Louis Armstrong and his Hot Five, and became the group’s most frequently recorded piece.

There’s some dispute over the authorship of the song, as Lil Hardin (pianist, composer, arranger, singer, bandleader, and the 2nd Mrs. Armstrong) may have come up with it and missed out on the credit. According to Sidney Bechet, Hardin merely renamed a song stolen by Kid Ory from Buddy Bolden (“The Old Cow Died and the Old Man Cried”). Eh… I’m not a jazz historian so we’ll leave it at that.

Satchmo in Munich 1962. I love this stuff.

Just a few years later, Joe McDonald stole the same music, renamed it, put words to it and performed it at Woodstock as an anti-Vietnam War protest song. (I didn’t realize until I scanned his bio – McDonald’s parents were communists and he was named after Joseph Stalin. Now it all makes sense.)

Yeah, we all know about the bloodshed that happened after South Vietnam got chumped, Joe, and I bet you never paid any royalties to Ory, Hardin or Armstrong either.

Okay, let’s lighten it up a tad.

Live from Tokyo, it’s The New Orleans Jazz Hounds. Recorded 14 May 2016, it features Kikuchi Haruka, Tamura Makiko, Sato Shingo. I don’t know who plays what, but it’s still a nice tribute.

Have a great weekend, folks. Let’s see what happens tomorrow.

7 December 1941 – Remember Always

Monday, 7 December 2015

WWII-pearl-harbor-attack-radiogram-m
WWII-fdr-day-of-infamy-draft

Annotated Draft of “Day of Infamy” Speech: Joint Address to Congress Leading to a Declaration of War Against Japan by Franklin D. Roosevelt, December 8, 1941.

Saturday Matinee – The Yoshida Brothers, Mean Mary James & Sarah jaroz

Saturday, 18 October 2014

The Yoshida Brothers rock. Here’s their Wiki entry if you’re curious. [via]

Mean Mary James rips traditional song “Cripple Creek” on banjo live at WPRK. You want a faster version? You won’t find it.

Sarah Jarosz on mandolin, with Alex Hargreaves on fiddle and Nathaniel Smith on cello, recorded April 2010, is a nice version of Tom Wait‘s song from “Mule Variations” (1999). Personally, I like Waits’ version better because gravel and petunias work for me on happy songs.

There are some great tunes hidden in the back of Tom Waits’ attic under the Swanson TV Dinner trays, matchbox covers, PEZ dispensers and Bazooka Joe coupons for free 6-inch long telescopes.

Have a great weekend, folks. We’re gonna post something else that’s completely inane tomorrow.

Tokyo’s Clothes Hangers Crows Nests

Monday, 19 May 2014

clothes hanger crows nest 1
clothes hanger crows nest 2
clothes hanger crows nest 3

Conceptual Art installations? Nope.

“When I lived in Tokyo, I used to watch the crows take hangers from my neighbors’ balconies. (Hangers were used to hang out washing to dry.) The crows would work in pairs to remove the clothing from the hangers and then one would fly off with the hanger. I’d never seen the nests though.”

[Images & reader comment found here, via here.]

Funky Monkey Babys

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Funky Monkey

Album cover from Japan titled “Funky Monkey Babys Last Best.” I’ll leave it up to you to find them on the Utoobage. [h/t Thomas de Bohun]


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