Tuesday, 19 June 2012


I saw one of the dates at Kokusai Forum, Tokyo. and it remains one of the best gigs I've ever seen.

As far as I know, this is the only time Springsteen has played in Japan in the last 20 years or so. Tickets for this tour went on sale shortly after I arrived in the country, in November 1996, so I wasn't able to see any of the shows.

This was a "Talk and Signing" event at HMV, Shibuya, Tokyo, which I attended. It was a curious event, with most of the questions pretty inane. However, in the lack of live shows from this threesome, it's the closest you'll get to seeing them in public.

I didn't get to see Suede on their tour of Japan in 1997, though they were very good, by all accounts.

This is a flyer for Richard Thompson's tour of Japan in 2001, with my ticket for the Shibuya Club Quattro show in Tokyo underneath. I went with Nick from The Fiddler pub, and it was a great show, perfectly recorded on my MD recorder.

Little Barrie have been popular in Japan for several years now. I met Lewis Wharton, who plays bass, in Footnik, Ebisu, Tokyo, after they'd played Summer Sonic in August 2005, and then interviewed all of them a year later. The flyer on the left is for their Japan Tour in December 2006, when I met up with them again. Since then, I've seen many times and they get better and better.

One of my great regrets is not seeing James Brown live. Apart from this tour in 2003, the Godfather of Soul visited Japan on a couple of other occasions, one of them as co-headliner with Chuck Berry!
I think this tour was in 2002, as I'd seen Patti Smith at Fuji Rock Festival the previous year for the first time, and was completely blown away by her performance. Seeing her at Akasaka Blitz, Tokyo, on this tour didn't disappoint either.
This is a brochure for The Rock Odyssey, held in Yokohama International Stadium on 24 and 25 July, 2004. I'm not sure which day I went to, but I think it was the first day. What I do remember is that it was The Who's first ever show in Japan yet, for some reason, Aerosmith ended the show. Paul Weller was also on the bill, while Love Psychedelico opened the show in fine style.

I couldn't get to this gig and, in fact, I have never seen Guitar Wolf live. I've met one of the band, though, in a tiny late night boozer in Shibuya called Tombstone.

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