Rinken Band & Tink Tink on YouTube

Funayare Orchestra Version with English Subtitles

Listening to Rinken Band’s music is both nostalgic and emotional for me so the orchestra version of their song Funayare in the YouTube clip above pulls at my heartstrings. Uehara Tomoko’s voice is one-of-a-kind and the music Teruya Rinken composes is truly original.

Like many musicians during the pandemic, concert tours have been canceled and those with establishments (minyo clubs, restaurants) have been closed so many have turned to YouTube and social media to reach their many fans across the globe. Dubbed the Rinken Band & Tink Tink official YouTube channel, it actually features more Tink Tink than Rinken Band which is great for daily content but the few that feature Rinken or Tomoko are amazing. You can find Rinken introducing his many instruments which is super interesting for performers and non-performers alike and Tomoko’s solo live (one hour!) concert will blow you away.

Sayaka from Tink Tink

Let’s hope that things can get back to normal soon and fans will be able to see them perform at Kalahaai again.

DA PUMP’s Oh! My Precious!

The boys are back with a new single and music video for their song Oh! My Precious! released on May 26th. The new song follows their March release Dream on the street so they’ve been on a steady release schedule for 2021.

Floating Room’s Upcoming EP “Shima”

Floating Room was recently featured in an NPR article for 11 Oregon Artists to Watch in 2021 and this little bit got me really excited:

Floating Room is set to release an EP called Shima on Famous Class Records in November.


I’m looking forward to listening to Shima and I have so many questions about it that will hopefully be answered when it’s released. Floating Room’s latest EP is Tired and True (just started listening to it again 😊) and it’s available on streaming services and on bandcamp.

RED SOUL’s Three New Singles

Hip-hop group RED SOUL (from Kadena 🤗) released three new singles on June 2nd. The singles are Noguni Sokan, FAIYĀ, and MY DREAM, and they have the full version of FAIYĀ up on their YouTube channel.

I hope they’ll have a video up of Noguni Sokan which is the single I’m most interested in listening to the lyrics of.

Orix Buffaloes Miyagi Hiroya

via Twitter

I wonder if there is any other team in NPB that has as many players from Okinawa that the Orix Buffaloes has. There’s pitcher Higa Motoki (drafted 2nd in 2009), infielder Oshiro Koji (drafted 3rd in 2015), infielder Gibo Sho (drafted 5th in 2018), and then there’s 19-year old pitcher Miyagi Hiroya who was drafted 1st in 2019. He’s currently 5-0 with a 2.32 ERA and he recently picked up his first NPB hit. So he’s definitely one to watch.

The players from Okinawa usually choose a theme song from an Okinawan artist and for Miyagi Hiroya it’s BEGIN’s Sanshin no Hana which I think is very cool. Higa has used a song from MONGOL800 and Oshiro has used a different song from BEGIN.

Follow the Orix Buffaloes on Twitter.

Memorial Day

Today is Memorial Day (戦没将兵追悼記念日) in the US.

Memorial Day (previously, but now seldom, called Decoration Day) is a federal holiday in the United States for honoring and mourning the military personnel who have died in the performance of their military duties while serving in the United States Armed Forces. The holiday is observed on the last Monday of May. The holiday was formerly observed on May 30 from 1868 to 1970.

Many people visit cemeteries and memorials on Memorial Day to honor and mourn those who died while serving in the U.S. Military. Many volunteers place an American flag on graves of military personnel in national cemeteries.

Memorial Day is also considered the unofficial start of summer in the United States, while Labor Day, the first Monday of September, marks the unofficial start of autumn.


We have a special memorial day too called Irei no Hi (Okinawa Memorial Day, 慰霊の日) that’s only observed in Okinawa on June 23rd to remember all of the lives lost during the Battle of Okinawa.

5th Elements 10th Anniversary

via 5th Elements

Vocal duo 5 Elements (A-RA and YU) is celebrating their 10th anniversary with the release of a new album THE BEST which features 15 tracks — including the song below (Minami no Shima e Dekakeyou) with sanshin by Maeda Hideyuki.

Minami no Shima e Dekakeyou

The new album also features the song Party which was written by Daizou from the group Ketsumeishi. Unfortunately, their music is currently only available in Japan for Apple Music and iTunes so importing the CD seems like the best bet.