Thursday, May 29, 2008

Tokyo Day 10 May 29, 2008

Day 10 was a wet day. The rain drops on the roof and surrounding roofs were loud and heavy at 7 am. I m slowly adjusting to the time here and finding myself waking up a little bit later. I also find myself falling asleep a little bit later. Never the less, today, I my agenda was to leave tokyo and prepare for my trip to osaka. The first stop enroute would be in Kamakura. This is a very old town with many many people. It is nestled in the hill right off the coast of southern japan , one hour south of tokyo, just right south of yokohama. As close as it is to the big city, it is another part of japan you won't find in tokyo.

Here the people are rather local and the ocean stares at the community. There is a big surfing community here as well. The swells here are very fickle though, because of it's south facing position, only southern swells from typhoons and tropical storms make their way in. But it is very convenient because of the location and a host of other commerce that happens here. I am staying in inamura part of shonen and I can see the ocean from my host's house. This is like living in a dream.

I always want a place where I can walk to the beach and go surf anytime. Well, today we got wet but it wasn't really surfing. Can't complain though. I am staying at Mikey's Casa. I am here in shonan because of our trip to Greenroom Osaka. Jonas and Mikey are tight friends from junior high school and they are also surfing locals. Life is very good here. All your wants are fulfilled here and there are no needs, if you want it.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Tokyo Day 9 May 28, 2008

(people lining up for Papa's Beard.)

(Modern Art, Baby, School is in Session)

Day 9 started late. I woke up at 8 am. The sun was already streaming into the room I am staying at since 6. My everyday farmer schedule was slowly turning into urbanite schedule. I slept later than usual and was waking up later than usual. I mean, from 5 am to 8 am is kind of an improvement as far as sleep schedule is concerned. Day 9 started with me working on a new bunch of smaller watercolor pieces. It was quiet until 11.40 am. At 11.40 I linked up with a good ol' friend and fellow barnstormer, Diska(!)

(daicon, the man!)

He is having an art show in Dainkanyama at a place called Unique from June 25~July 16. Echo Daikanyama #202, 1-30-14 Ebisu Nishi, Shibuya, Tokyo. I would go if I was around, and my dear reader, if you find yourself in tokyo during those times, I highly recommend checking his art show out. He is busy painting getting the show ready for you! We strolled through the back streets of ebisu to shibuya. From there, we met Yuri Shibuya and together we went to eat. During our walk to the restaurant, DJ Kogee showed up on his bike! Him just riding around and not having slept all night was apparently a bit hungry! We four went and ate some pasta.

(my perspective)

(Hamamatsu Bad Boy)

(yuri's perspective)

It was alright. After food, we mosied on over to W/Base and Bicyclette. Both bike premier bike spots in tokyo. I guess its to bike riders what Homage Brooklyn is to Skaters. There was a motley crew of bikes at the shop and a bunch hanging out. WBase is a shop owned the big brother of famed Rip RIPZINGER.

(bikes is deep here)
This is a core shop and as such, attracts a core clientele who demand only the best in freestyle bikes while Bicyclette is a shop that caters to all the piste riders out there! I learned a new trick.. I should loosen my chain a little bit. Can t wait to try that when I get back.

(a cafe in ebisu neighborhood, Octagon Cafe!)

(crazy... check out the brakes.)
After that, it was time for me to roll back and do some work and get ready for my trip to Osaka on saturday.
Much later at night, I went to a sento.

(public bath with laundromat...ahhhh)

I am still a little bit reeling from the sauna and cold bath. I am tripping! My last stop was a super market in nakameguro where I could finally eat an untouched vegitables! AHHH!! Avocado, Carrots, Peanuts in shells and water. Psyched!! I want to especially the hard working summer time crewss!!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Tokyo Day 8 May 27, 2008

Day 8 was a beautiful day. Went to setagaya Koen, to a local mini half but unfortunately it was not open. Not really sure why it was closed. I stopped through at 11 am and at 3 pm. Oh well, sometimes life is like that. Not everything goes my way. Just like for anyone else. Just gotta switch that perspective, that' all. Here's some images I did not get to publish yet. Enjoy.

(the rain did not stop the music)

(Foo and Business Partner and DJ KOGEE)

(family love!!)

(new doodles for UPLINK, June 5- June 16, 2008)

(the sunday after the greenroom..the laundry and wash myself day)

(who can take a better photo than a satelite?)

(I tell everyone I m staying at an office... is this so bad? Home Sweet Office, YTP)

(you get exclusive backstage privelages, here)

Tokyo Day 7 May 26, 2008

(goin' to work?!)
So! we are coming up to a week, my lovelies. How time flies! Monday, day 7 was quite an event. After a day of rest, it was gonna be a relaxing day to meander about town, particularly Harajuku and Shibuya.

(store front)

First place on the agenda was to check out Another Edition, a store in harajuku displaying some of my watercolor art pieces and selling three tee shirt designs I did for their spring/summer collection.

(one of three designs)

(sketches on watercolor papers)

(stickeratti'd pole is SO in this year...)
We were lucky that the day was warm and there were many things to see while I played tourist.

We met up with Tsuruta San and I took some flicks.

(Big Up in TKO!!)
After our meet, greet and check out the shop, we went to eat lunch at a chinese restaurant, the son of dragon. Very befitting a new kung fu flick. I had tan tan men and some mabo tofu. It was a lunch time recommendation of a good friend of mine, DJ KOGEE of Hotcakes.
After food and wandering, one thing led to another and the next thing you know, I found myself traveling all over the shibuya~harajuku neighborhood, catching up with old friends and familiar faces and meeting new ones and new places.

(Where I get Homage? Shut?)
This particular day's road took me to a mini Phil Frost museum at Hectic Harajuku, right near the Wendy's at omotesando, Hectic's Tenjikai ( introducing the new fall/winter line),

(this how we roll! goin' surfin in tokyo, SUN!!)
Volcom's Danger Mini at Omotesando, Harajuku,

( Mister Sano!)

the top secret Burton Bowl, Uplink Gallery, An Art Bookstore near Uplink,

(what the...)
watching the installation of Kami and Cres's mural painting for Chanel's Mobile Museum in Olympic Yoyogi Koen,


(Kress and Kami, Modern Art)
Yoyogi Koen's Super Floor Mural of Kami and Sasu, the SUPER ILL Gateway by Cres, Bel2 and Suiko.

(Bel2 and Suiko)

(Kress and Bel2)
After all that and getting ready to call it quits,

(not rush hour)
I found myself on a train ride to yokohama to yokohama's premier live spot, Thumbs Up! I spent the whole day like a tourist. I realize traveling brings out the essence of moment to moment interaction. I mean, when I travel, I find myself doing things that I usually don't do. Now, that sounds obvious but lets put things in perspective. Why is every moment so precious? There is a moment when I am gonna have to jump back on that vehicle that took me to where I came from. I won't be able to live that moment again. It is just accentuated when I travel because, I am physically involved in the moment of now as my mind is. At home, I am afraid I was taking an advantage of having been where I am from. I don't have to try to do anything, but sometimes in that process, I miss out on opportunities that might have beens. It's probably not possible to do everything all the time, but with a little planning and determination, I think we can all strive to do more, not because it is our routine, but because it is not routine. My day 7? I had a meeting, I sold a shirt, I talked to some random fan, watched a man being harrassed by a crow, skated up and down hills and ramps, endured a crowded train ride, reconnected with old friends and new ones and bathed in beautiful live sounds of,

The Badge,

The Electric Rainbow Band,


Ash Grunweld, in that order, ate an avocado cheese teriyaki burger and a mango beer. YEAH! That's traveling. I would especially like to thank for my day's events, Kumetani Satoshi of Dooor, DJ Kogee of Hotcake, Akeem of Hectic, Phil Frost, Koi Fish swimming upstream, Sano San of Volcom, Sakai san of Burton, Ichiro san of Thumbs UP, Shingo Wakagi for putting a roof over my head, Mi Asakita for putting up with me and the following bands and their members... The Badge (Noric/Guitars and Voice, Masaya/Drums,Dai/Bass), The Electric Rainbow Band (Otsuka Hiroyuki/Guitar,Chutney/Bass,Kanami/Bass), Saritah (Guitar/Lovely Voice/AppleBox) and Ash Grumweld (Guitar/Throat/Boom/BAP). If you have never heard any of these bands play, I highly recommend going. It sound kinda obvious, I will not steer you wrong. My jaws dropped. The Badge is ROCK! The Electric Rainbow Band is Psychadelic ROCK in the vein of Jimi Hendrix, ALOT. Saritah is hard heavy hittin' acoustic posi~funk with vocals that make you glad to be alive and ASH .. Damn, this guy is like three guys, three big guys that can build a log cabin in a day and clear the field AND play all night. Why are there so many great bands without gimmicks that we hardly ever get to hear all the time? Am I just going to all the wrong shows? Thank YOUSE!!

(I love Phil Frost.. when I stumbled on this, what?!)

One very important trip to Harajuku is to see Phil Frosts work at Hectic. Believe me, It s an installation that you can't even appreciate, unless you see the shop for your self. Phil Frost is amazingly prolific. He just released a new book. No trip is complete without a trip to this part of tokyo. Only in Japan. It really is a mini museum.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Tokyo Day 6 May 25, 2008

So, today I rest. But check these out!! Holla!! From the camera of Yuri Shibuya!!

(who are you?)

(this is the ladie's coach...)

Tokyo Day 5 May 24, 2008

Going to work. Who knew what the day's event was going to be like? Yuri Shibuya and Kumetani Satoshi, unawares of the quiet before the storm. But you know what, it s all in a day's work.

GreenRoom Surf Music Festival in Yokohama's Osanbashi Hall was quite an event. There was some people checking it out.

There were 3 stages, this was one of them.

(Positive Vibrations!! Saritah, giving thanks.)

(Keison Getting Ready)

It rained, but that did not stop the organizers from keeping the rain off the outdoor geo dome wood performance space.

(Umbrellas work, too.)

There were artists galore. The people behind the whole surf culture industry image, the people behind the cameras and those behind the mics and on the stage.

(yusuke Hanai was mad busy)

(two of the thirty five rythmn knockers called Panorama Steel Orchestra)

(Pepe California. The Next Krafterk, Chemical Brothers do it yourself band! Had me JUMPING!!)

(Models of 'Fine' Magazine.. fashion getting in the mix)

(two lovelies from australia, one dork. Saritah and Natalie of Blue King Brown)

(Battling the forces of evil and ill intent. Jonas Kaku, Jonas Glass Vision)


(check out the hat!)

(Taisuke Yokoyama. OG Shonan lens man)

(Naoko. Live Finger Painting the Booth)

(Don't Mess with this guy. OG! Cyborg Magazine and Dangerous Legendary Lensman, NISHI with Good buddy, Rick!!)

(Future Generation)

(John from California and Yuri from Kichijoji)

(Shonan Lensman)

(The man, Kamaichi, organizer of this little throw down with DJ Tommy of Shonan Surf Mafia and killer selector!)

It is what it is.. a music festival requires organization and funding.

17 Bands, 7 djs, 42 artists and 3 stages later, I m tired, my legs are tired and my mind is swimming. The lights, colors and sounds engulfed my being. The now was later and I m at the key pads typing stuff out, which I am finding no good words to express with. The sounds were all positive, the artists were all positive and the audience, they made the floors bounce and the walls shake!

(can you feel IT, SUCKERS!!)
Did I mention there was a tree house? When you got to the top of it, there were three stained glass window pieces and when you looked through.. did I mention there was a tree house?

I m done, put a fork in me, until osaka.