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Archives for : July2015

J!-ENT @ ANIME EXPO 2015

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J!-ENT photographer Darren Yamashita was at Anime Expo 2015.  It was his first experience at the convention and his upcoming article and many photos from the event will be featured in our upcoming 2015 J!-ENT Annual!  Stay tuned!

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Photo of the Day: Nippon Budokan

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Nippon Budokan, the indoor arena in central Tokyo where many rock n’ roll and music legends such as the Beatles, Bob Dylan, Cheap Trick, Ozzy Osborne, Eric Clapton, The Carpenters, have played at.

While originally built as the judo competition building for the 1964 Summer Olympics, it has become a status of the best of the best in music perform there.

Granted, things have changed a lot since then, as many artists, groups and bands that don’t have an established career have performed there.  And it’s also a site that has been utilized for sports, graduations and other events.

But still, it’s a place worth visiting and experiencing a concert in their lifetime.

NPB CARD OF THE WEEK: Clarence Jones – BBM Hawks 75th Anniversary

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While looking at my collection of BBM cards for the Hawks 75th Anniversary, I saw a card for infielder Clarence Jones.

While you do see foreign players show up on other sets, you don’t see that many African American players from the past showing up on Japanese anniversary sets, unless they were special players.

As I did my research for Clarence Jones, I read about how he was a right fielder and first baseman for the Chicago Cubs (1966-1968).

By 1970, he left to Japan to play for the Nankai Hawks.

But it’s his 1974 year with the Kintetsu Buffaloes in which he made his name known as he hit 38 home runs and won the home run title in the NPB, repeated that feat. in 1975 with 39 home runs and led the Pacific League again in 1976 with 36 home runs.

And by the end of his career in Japan, he amassed 250 home runs in eight seasons.  Helped a Mexican League team win a pennant and also became a booking agent for the late comedian, Redd Foxx.  While Jones didn’t stay in the entertainment industry too long, his son Richard would eventually pursue a career as an actor.

But where Clarence Jones’ name shows up is his relationship with former MLB player David Justice.  Clarence Jones became a roving batting instructor thanks to Hank Aaron, who was the head of the Braves farm team at the time.  By 1985, he was promoted to the big leagues by Braves manager Eddie Haas.

While Clarence Jones may not have had a long career in the MLB, he gave it his all in Japan and became one of the most successful foreign players in the NPB.

J!-ENT Annual Teaser – Momoiro Clover Z

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J!-ENT’s Darren Yamashita was in Los Angeles for Anime Expo this past July 4th weekend to cover the event but also to cover Momoiro Clover Z live performance.  Here are a few teaser photos from the concert.  More photos to be featured in our upcoming J!-ENT annual for 2015!  Stay  tuned!

Did Lauren Mikolas sign with Inagawa Motoko Office?

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As Yomiuri Giants Miles Mikolas continues bring the team wins, his wife Lauren (27) has become popular in Japan for her support for her husband and people can’t get enough of seeing her support her husband during games.

Quite often, you don’t see many NPB players wives, especially foreign wives receive so much press, but Lauren is receiving a lot of media hype because of her fashion, but also showing her support for her husband (with a few kisses – which you don’t see in Japan all that much).

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It was announced on Japanese media that Lauren Mikolas had signed an exclusive contract with Inagawa Motoko office and will make an appearance in an NTV program.

Lauren has since tweeted the following:

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[NOTE: Yomiuri Giants Pitcher and Lauren’s husband Miles Mikolas was recently interviewed and said that Lauren is working freelance and are accepting offers and not locked into any agency].

Kawaei Rina to switch agencies from AKS to Avex Vanguard

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With AKB48 member Kawaei Rina (20) set to graduate on August 4th, she actress announced that she has also transferred agencies.

With many AKB48 members belonging to AKS, Kawaei Rina will now be with Avex Vanguard which actresses Sawajira Erika and Saeko belong too.

Kawaei will pursue her long life dream of becoming an actress.

SPEED’s Imai Eriko and Shimabukuro Hiro to form new unit, ERIHIRO

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SPEED’s Imai Eriko (31) and Shimabukuro Hiro (31) to form new unit, ERIHIRO.

The new group was revealed on July 1st with an announcement that a new single titled “Stars” will be released on August 26th.

The musical direction for “Stars” will feature EDM and Pop.

Kasai Tomomi’s Bus Tour – Y65,000 for two days, one night

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For fan club members of Kasai Tomomi (known as “Chiyuu ♡ Iris”), they can take part of her bus tour which will cost them Y65,000 for two days and one night.

Day one features a trip from Tokyo to Fuji Q Highland Amusement Park followed by a trip to the hot springs (hotel)

Day 2 – From the hotel to a souvenir shop, fruit hunting, barbecue and return to Tokyo.

The tour is limited to 40 people, with a minimum of 30 that must be met for the tour to happen.