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Just discovered the Kaimono Boogie (Shopping Boogie) performed by Shizuko Kasagi (1914-1985) in 1950. Kasagi was known as the Queen of Boogie. If you understand Japanese, especially Osaka-ben, this one is a lot of fun to listen to. I like the part where she tries to get the attention of the elderly shopkeeper, who happens to be extremely hard of hearing.
After introducing sites about traditional Japanese architecture last week, hereby a list of sites about modern architecture in Japan. Although there are many excellent Japanese architects, it is surprisingly difficult to find good sites in English. For example, even though Tadao Ando is one of Japan’s best known architects at this point in history, his most obvious domains are all taken by cybersquatters.
I went shooting again in Tokyo’s Harajuku. The rain limited the opportunities somewhat, but I still found some cool people.
The Cove is a new documentary about the dolphin hunts in Taiji. Read the synopsis:
I wrote an article about the Japanese reaction to the H1N1 Flu for Dutch media. Hereby an English translation.
Now may be a good time to take a trip in Japan. Asahi Shimbun reports that luxury hotels in Japan are slashing prices to fill rooms. For example, an overnight stay at the Peninsula Tokyo can cost as low as 38,000 yen, while a room at the Ritz-Carlton Osaka is priced at 25,000 yen. Many discounts are half of the normal rates.
Five Japanese cities are about to embark on a new form of town development that aims to preserve their traditional townscapes. The five are Kameyama (Mie Prefecture), Hikone (Shiga Prefecture), Takayama (Gifu Prefecture), Kanazawa (Ishikawa Prefecture) and Hagi (Yamaguchi Prefecture). The projects result from a new law enforced last November to provide financial and legal support to municipalities’ efforts to preserve historic landscapes in specific quarters.