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    Default J-Hop

    Hip hop in Japan. For those that don't know, Hip Hop started to become big in Japan a few years before I went moved to Tokyo, in the late 1990's. It was brought there largely from contact with the U.S., MTV and black American soldiers. When I lived in Tokyo from 2002-2003 there were several hiphop clubs in Tokyo, but the largest was "Club Harlem" (not sure if it is still open). Last time I was in Japan was last December and it is now not uncommon to see young Japanese with sagging pants and calling each other "b-boisu" (black boys) Even some have permed afros (girls too), that is not common though. HIp Hop in Japan is just "Japanese music" part of the pop scene. It plays on the radio with everything else, as young people's music is not segregated by genera as in the U.S.

    Here are some samples:

    DJ Hasebe featuring Miwa from the defunct Sugar Soul singing the hook. I met her in real life, she is a shorty, very nice, speaks a little English. She only talked to me because I was a black guy in the front row. I think I was the only black guy there...she let me back ex-wife was not pleased to be honest. This was years ago though...she was not as big, it was a club in Tokyo.

    M-Flo (Verbal the rapper is actually ethnically Korean (Zainich) but grew up in Japan and went to university in America, speaks fluent English, Japanese, very little Korean)...the singer is Krystal Kay (half Korean/half African American, but grew up in Japan, as her father retired there. Her mother was also raised in Japan).

    She waved at me at a concert, mainly because I was black. I guess she don't see many black folks, besides her father. I shouted "What's up baby???" all the Japanese people were looking, one asked me (you know her?) I was like "yeah we are fam..." Anyway, listen to the song 2:55 seconds in, its much better than the beginning. Crystal Kay and Verbal are famous in Japan or used to be. they got a lot of rotation.

    My ex wife liked this group:

    The idea was to get some urban hipster Japanese guy and put him in a group with a thugged out gangsta like Japanese guy They even refer to them sometimes as the "black one and the white one" Seriously.

    It worked, they have been big for 8 years. I really like this song, it is about breaking up with a woman but at the end of the night you get back with her.

    Now we also have Ai. Ai is 1/4 Italian, 3/4 Japanese, born in L.A., but moved to Japan to sing. She is straight ghetto, when she speaks English she sounds like she has spent time in Compton. However, I love her voice, she is quite famous in Japan right now.

    This song is her best, in my opinion...she sounds sexy as hell until you actually here her speak in English.

    My favorite all time Japanese group is Dreams Come True. Yoshida Miwa is the Shi'zit!

    I saw her in concert to, but never met her Some Japanese call this R&B but it is not in my opinion, anyway:

    This song is called "3 Quarter Moon" she is wishing for her love one to come back on the moon.

    What do yo guys think??? Does anyone know any more Japanese music like this, I'm kind of out of the loop...

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