Archives for : July2014

@JAM ALLSTARS 2014 upcoming single


With one of the largest collaborative idol events ever put together in Japan, @JAM EXPO 2014 will feature dozens of idol groups, a special single featuring a member from five idol groups will participate.

The members include Sekine Azusa from Up Up Girls Kakkokari, Arai Hitomi from Tokyo Girls Style, Aizawa Risa from Dempagumi inc., Takahashi Mari from Dorothy Little Happy and Suzuki Mariya from Cheeky Parade.

The single titled “Yume no Suna – theme of @JAM”, will be released on August 30th.

Covers for AKB48’s upcoming single “Kokoro no Placard” and teaser video released


Covers for AKB48’s 37th single has been unveiled as well as a teaser music video showcasing Watanabe Mayu as the lead center.  The single suits Mayuyu’s style and is a happy, upbeat pop song that will surely entice people to create more dance videos and upload them to YouTube.

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S.F.’s Annual Japanese Pop Culture Extravaganza Attracts Huge Crowds For Music, Anime, Film, Fashion and Ramen


San Francisco, CA, July 28, 2014 – The 2014 J-POP SUMMIT Festival, San Francisco’s premiere celebration of Japanese pop culture, music, fashion, games, art, food and film, broke all previous attendance records during its recent 6th annual weekend-long event. More than 120,000 people attended the two-day Festival that took place across the city’s Japantown on July 19th and 20th.

The second annual J-POP Live at Union Square concert took place on the evening of Saturday, July 19th and attracted nearly 5,000 people who filled the iconic downtown plaza and surrounding vantage points to enthusiastically welcome an array of headlining live musical performers from Japan.

The 2014 J-POP SUMMIT also kicked off the second annual Japan Film Festival of San Francisco, which ran thru Sunday, July 27th at the NEW PEOPLE Cinema, located at 1746 Post St in Japantown.

The 2014 J-POP SUMMIT presented several top Japanese artists that made their U.S. debut including pop stars and Guests of Honor former AKB48 memeber, Tomomi Itano, May’n, Una and the teen idol group, Tokyo Girls’ Style, as well as crowd favorite Kimono Cosplay pop singing duo, Yanakiku, Japanese-American pop singer Kylee, and the return of human beat box phenomenon, DAICHI. Japanese actor and star of Itazura Na Kiss, Yûki Furukawa, also appeared in-person to introduce the U.S. theatrical debut of his new film at NEW PEOPLE Cinema, “wo ai ni” (I love you) in TOKYO, as well as director Mitsutoshi Tanaka who appeared for the premiere of his new historical biopic, Ask This of Rikyu.

In addition to Japantown appearances by all of these artists, fans were treated to some J-flavored punk and alternative music from the Akabane Vulgars on Strong Bypass and Pinky Doodle Poodle, who were notably introduced on-stage by Robby Takac of The Goo Goo Dolls.

Kawaii-themed fashion programming was presented in partnership with ASOBISYSTEM and gave attendees and fashionistas kinetic live appearances by iconic Harajuku models Misa Kimura, Akira, Una and Ayumi Seto, who launched her new, “Aymmy in the batty girls” apparel line. Fans also were introduced to the sexy pop color explosion of the girls of Black Diamond from Shibuya and an array of other on-stage dance and fashion contests and other programming such as Baby, the Stars Shine Bright Contest, an “ODOTTEMITA” Dance Contest, Cosplay Masquerade, J-POP IDOL Contest and the Japan Discovery Stage.

Kinokuniya Book Stores of America and SEGA® of America welcomed visual artist, KEI, who designed the character of Hatsune Miku, the world’s first virtual pop star, and made his first-ever U.S. appearance to meet Miku fans and sign his art books.

Web-based Japanese cultural channel and sponsor JAPANKURU, taken from an original coined word that implies, “Come to Japan,” showcased the country’s strong influence on pop culture with a colorful JAPANKURU x J-POP SUMMIT Festival 2014 booth that offered attendees unique products unavailable in the U.S. and insights into travel to various parts of Japan.

The POP GOURMET Food Festival also returned to J-POP SUMMIT for its second consecutive year and offered new expanded attractions that included a Sake Tasting area, produced by Consulate General of Japan in San Francisco and hosted by more than a dozen premiere sake brands and brewers, as well as RAMEN Street, and a Japanese Beverage and Bites & Snacks Area hosted in-part by Takara Sake USA, which brought the festival’s official cocktail “J POP,” as well as Sapporo USA, Azuma Foods, Meiji and ITO-EN.

RAMEN Street was a brand new attraction for J-POP SUMMIT this year and was co-presented in cooperation with the Ramen Yokocho Association. The scrumptious event drew tens of thousands who cued in hours-long lines throughout the entire weekend for a taste of authentic hearty, made-from-scratch Japanese ramen from some of the best purveyors of the dish in the world. Many of the local restaurants, merchants and other businesses in the Japantown area also benefited from the massive attendance.

“The record setting attendance for the 2014 J-POP SUMMIT affirms the tremendous popularity that Japanese pop culture has across a truly wide cross section of people of all ages, from all walks of life, and it is a direct result of the support of our sponsors, the City of San Francisco, the Japantown community, and the passion and hard work invested by our Festival staff as well as legions of dedicated volunteers that so generously contributed their time before, during as well as after this year’s event,” says Seiji Horibuchi, J-POP SUMMIT Festival founder and chairman of the J-POP SUMMIT Festival Committee. “Each J-POP SUMMIT strives to present a unique composite of the latest pop culture trends happening in Japan right now. Many of the artists and content that has been featured goes on to become globally popular. As we look forward to 2015, we reflect on lessons learned and also the energy that J-POP SUMMIT has brought to Japantown and the fun and excitement it has given to so many attendees year after year.”

2014 J-POP SUMMIT Festival sponsors included: JAPANKURU, ASOBISYSTEM, TAKARA SAKE USA, SEGA, Biken International, MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON, the Consulate General of Japan in San Francisco, SAPPORO, Ma Chére Cosette?, Crunchyroll, United Airline, Kinokuniya USA, Meiji, Azuma Foods, JVTA, and the Japan Foundation.

Launched in 2013, Japan Film Festival of San Francisco is the first and only fully-dedicated Japanese film event for the SF Bay Area, and features a colorful mix of narratives, anime and documentary film premieres and exclusive screenings with special guest appearances at the NEW PEOPLE Cinema in SF Japantown. Additional details are available at:

About J-POP SUMMIT Festival
Launched in 2009, J-POP SUMMIT Festival is an annual street fair held in San Francisco, CA that celebrates Japanese popular culture. By introducing the latest in Japanese music, film, art, fashion, gaming, anime, food, as well as niche subcultures, the festival has become a prominent platform to showcase the latest pop trends and creative innovations from Japan.

In addition to the original Festival held in Japantown, new attractions include the J-POP LIVE AT UNION SQUARE concert in downtown San Francisco, the Bay Area’s premier dedicated Japan Film Festival of San Francisco, and sake-tasting and fine foods events at the POP GOURMET Food Festival, which have each further enriched the experience. Additional information about J-POP SUMMIT Festival is available at:

AKB48 watches an advanced screening of “Stand By Me Doraemon”



AKB48 watched “Stand By Me Doraemon” and Kashiwagi Yuki and Kitahara Rie discussed how much they cried during the film. Kashiwagi commented on how she usually doesn’t cry during a film or drama but for this film, she was crying. While Kitahara felt she cried the most of the members and that her head hurts from crying too much. While Yokoyama Yui was impressed with the 3D CG. Shimazaki “Paruru” Haruka commented on how the film reminded her the importance of telling people of how much you care about them.

SPYAIR – Not breaking up!


Back in May, it was reported that SPYAIR will be discontinuing activities after member IKE was diagnosed with acute chorditis and polyps were found in his throat.

But on the band’s official site in July 28, SPYAIR is in the process of resuming activity as IKE’s polyps were removed and the band has come out to say that they are not disbanding.  They do plan to resume activity in the future but for now, they want IKE to recover from his surgery and his acute chorditis.

The band members also apologized to their fans but had an encouraging message that they want to keep moving forward to their music and posted the following unreleased song on YouTube:

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Shinohara Ryoko’s husband, actor Ichimura Masachika being treated for gastric cancer


Singer/actress Shinohara Ryoko (40) announced that her husband will be stepping down as a musical performer for “Miss Saigon” as her husband Ichimura Masachika (65) was diagnosed with gastric cancer.

As Ichimura was diagnosed with acute gastritis, upon inspection, a malignant tumor was found on the 26th.

Mayuyu performs with Takarazuka Revue an Sashihara Rino performs with Marty Friedman and JAM’s Takuya on TV Asahi Special



It was a night of collaboration and a dream come true for AKB48 stars, Watanabe Mayu and Sashihara Rino.

For TV Asahi’s “真夏のプレミア音楽祭~魅惑のコラボレーション~” Watanabe Mayu, she had to perform with Takarazuka Revue, a group that she has been identified with with her hand/body pose while Sashihara Rino had the opportunity to perform with MEGADETH guitarist Marty Friedman and JUDY AND MARY guitarist Takuya.

The special will air on TV Asahi on August 16th at 2:30 p.m.

moumoon’s popular monthly acoustic live event on the evening of the full moon will be broadcast as “FULLMOON LIVE 2014.August On Ustream & niconico Live & YouTube”


Title: “FULLMOON LIVE 2014.August On Ustream & niconico Live & YouTube”
Broadcast date: August 11, 2014 (Mon.) 21:00~

[Ustream broadcast URL]
[niconico Live broadcast URL]
[YouTube broadcast URL]

Check it out!

※ Note
・There might be interference during the video depending on the connection status of the network and the radio frequency.
※ Anyone can watch the performance as long as they have internet access.
※Broadcast time is Japanese Standard Time.
※People who live overseas can watch Ustream and niconico Live.
※The live performance shown on YouTube is only available to watch in Japan.
※People who live overseas will be able to watch it after the archive video is uploaded to YouTube.