Kenshi Yonezu’s ‘Lemon’ CD Cover Displayed at Otsuka Museum of Art

07.July.2019 | MUSIC / SPOT

Since Kenshi Yonezu released his single Lemon in March last year, it has gone on to enjoy huge success, reaching numerous milestones.

 

The song was written as the main theme for the TBS drama Unnatural which aired in January 2018. Its music video was released the following month and garnered huge views in an instant, and after just 475 days it had reached over 400 million. It was also the first Japanese music video to gain 300 million. Lemon has also sold over 300 million copies. It is the first song to rank three times in a row on Billboard JAPAN Hot 100: for both halves of 2018 and the first half of 2019.

Photo by Tomokazu Yamada

Speaking of its continued success, Yonezu comments: “I am thankful. It exceeded my expectations a long time ago, but I’ve been very interested to see just how far it will go. I’m mostly unaware of my own songs. I’d like it to continue to be loved by people.”

As a show of gratitude to how much Lemon has resonated with people, the CD cover art will be displayed permanently at the Otsuka Museum of Art in Tokushima in the form of a ceramic tile from July 30.

Touban, or “ceramic tiles,” don’t lose their colour or deteriorate and so can keep their colour and shape for up to 2,000 years.

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    Desk calendars will also be available, featuring the photos used at the exhibition.

     

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    Dive into the wonderful world of Studio Ghibli at the Ghibli Bijutsukan Monogatari Photo Exhibition.

     

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  • Kenshi Yonezu Releases ‘Paprika’ Song Digitally as 2020 ‘HYPE’ Tour Kicks Off

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    Kenshi Yonezu’s song Paprika has become a hit amongst the children of Japan since its release, even taking home the top award at the 61st Kagayaku! Japan Record Awards. Its music video has garnered over 70 million views on YouTube, and tomorrow (February 3) the song will be released digitally.

     

    This version of the song is a “self-cover” in which Yonezu sings. The original version was written and produced by Yonezu but he did not actually sing in it. In July 2018, he announced a new project to cheer on the people of the world in 2020 and beyond. It began with the formation of Foorin, a group of child singers who sang the original Paprikamusic video which Yonezu wrote the lyrics for as well as composed and produced the music. A was released in July 2018 which has amassed over 164 million views (as of January 1, 2020), which features Foorin performing choreography created by Tomohiko Tsujimoto and Koharu Sugawara.

     

    At the end of 2019, Foorin had already performed on numerous music television programmes, and a new group was formed called Foorin team Eーa group of international children who performed Paprika in English. Thus began the worldwide phenomenon of Paprika.

     

    Within just 4 days and 9 hours of its release, Kenshi Yonezu’s self-cover version released on YouTube had already surpassed 10 million views. Now, the self-cover is set to be released digitally on February 3, 2020. The artwork for the digital release was created by Ryu Kato.

     

    Paprika will be used for NHK’s TV and radio program Minna no Uta (“Everybody’s Song”) throughout February and March.

     

    Kenshi Yonezu’s 2020 “HYPE” tour in Japan and Asia has finally kicked off. Find the full schedule below.

  • Interview: Internationally Popular Japanese Artist Chocomoo Talks About Upcoming Harajuku Exhibition

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    Chocomoo Interview

     

    “I’ve loved drawing ever since I was a kid. I’d draw in notebooks, sketchbooks. When I went to New York for the first time, too, I kept a sketch diary and would draw in the park. I was later asked by a guy who managed a gallery if I’d put my work on at his site.”

     

    It was there at that gallery exhibiting several of her works that the first buyer came by.

    “I sold my first piece of art. A piece of art drawn by an ‘ordinary person,’ not someone who was an active artist. It was about 30 dollars, if I recall, but I was super happy.”

     

    New York helped pave the way for Chocomoo to begin her first steps towards becoming an illustrator.

     

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    “When I create a piece, I incorporate a lot of positive words into it in the hopes that it lifts people up.”

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    Chocomoo was asked to give a comment on her future plans and goals. She said, with a smile: “I want to steadily keep doing what I’m best at without changing what I already have, but I also want my work to reach lots of children too. I’d be happy for them to colour in my work, and I want to challenge myself to making some kind of video format aimed at kids. After that, since I’ve already painted a car, I want to go bigger and paint an aeroplane!”

     

    Interview/Original Text: Naho Sotome (五月女菜穂)

    Photos: 大黒屋 Ryan 尚保

    English Translation: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga

     

    As Chocomoo looks to expand her portfolio and reach, we look forward to seeing what she has in store for her exhibition in Harajuku.

     

    ©2020 Chocomoo

  • Kenshi Yonezu’s ‘Lemon’ Music Video Breaks 500 Million Views On YouTube

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    Kenshi Yonezu’s 2018 single Lemon has broken many milestones to date, and today marks yet another etching in history.

    The music video for Lemon officially broke 500 million views on December 17, 2019 at 10:08am (JST), which marks one year and 295 days since it was released on YouTube. Yonezu now holds the record for most viewed Japanese artist on the video platform.

    Photo by Tomokazu Yamada

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    Lemon enjoys yet another year of success following its overwhelming popularity upon its release in 2018. To thank fans for its success, a billboard has been put up at the Hachiko Exit of Shibuya Station in Tokyo, which reads “Kenshi Yonezu” on the left and “Music Carries On” on the right. It will be up until December 29, 2019.

  • ‘Lemon’ by Kenshi Yonezu the First Song to Lead Billboard Charts in Japan and the U.S. for Two Consecutive Years

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    Particularly over the past two years, Kenshi Yonezu has been making history in the charts. His song Lemon was highlighted as song of the year on Billboard JAPAN Hot 100 of the Year 2019 and the U.S Billboard HOT 100 for two consecutive years in a row, making Yonezu the first ever artist to top the Billboard charts for two consecutive years in a row with the same song. 

    Photo by Tomokazu Yamada

    Following the release of Lemon in March 2018, its digital and physical downloads scored ranks in the charts 25 times, pushing Yonezu onwards to continue his streak into 2019 where he saw more no.1s, 3 million downloads on his song Lemon, which set the record for fastest downloaded song in Japan, and now almost half a billion views on the official music video for LemonThe song’s overwhelming popularity even scored it no.1 in Japan’s karaoke rankings where it reigned for a whole 85 weeks: the longest of any song. 

     Yonezu dominated the Billboard JAPAN Hot 100 of the Year 2019 download rankings for two consecutive years in a row and four of his ten songs made it onto the charts, including Lemon at no.1, Uma to Shika at no.5, Machigai Sagashi at no.6 (performed by Masaki Suda, written by Yonezu) and Paprika at no.7 (performed by Foorin, written by Yonezu). His achievements even stretch to producing and he is loved by children and adults in Japan alike. 

  • Kenshi Yonezu-Produced Foorin team E Releases Paprika English Ver. Music Video and Song Worldwide

    02.December.2019 | MUSIC

    Aiming to cheer everybody on in the runup to 2020 and beyond, Kenshi Yonezu formed two music groups consisting of young children called Foorin and Foorin team E to perform the Japanese and English versions of his song Paprika respectively as part of an ongoing music project. 

     

    Foorin team E “Paprika” Dance Video

    Check out the English version of Paprika performed by Foorin team E on YouTube. 

    Paprika was dropped on digital services worldwide on December 2. Paprika will also be released on CD in First-Press Edition and Regular Edition copies on January 22 in Japan. The First-Press Edition comes in a seven-inch jacket containing the lyrics on a displayable card, a DVD of the music video and origami paper. There is also the chance to get your hands on a bonus Paprika dream magnet which will be in limited availability at selected music shops in Japan. Information on places to purchase will be revealed in the near future. The illustration for the CD jacket was created by Ryu Kato, who also created the illustrations used in the music video for Kenshi Yonezu’s cover of Paprika and the illustrations for the jacket of Foorin’s version of Paprika.  

     

    As is the case with the Japanese version of Paprika, the royalties generated by Yonezu from the release of the English version of Paprika and its secondary usage will be donated to Independent Administrative Corporations and Japanese sports foundations in order to assist athletes of the future generations.  

    Photo by Takako Noel

    Paprika is working up a sensation throughout Japan as a break-through kid’s song. When Foorin released Paprika in 2018, the dance music video was viewed over 140 million times on YouTube and Paprika-related videos on NHK’s website generated over 260 million views. The song’s lyrics and music writer and producer Kenshi Yonezu even released his own cover of Paprika earlier this year in August. In just four days and nine hours since its upload, the cover was viewed over 10 million times, which is the fastest record for any of Yonezu’s music videos. Now the video has over 50 million views and is loved by people of all generations. 

     

    Yonezu’s projects are propelling forward full steam ahead. Who knows what he’s got next up his sleeve?

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  • Kenshi Yonezu To Release English Version of ‘Paprika’ with English-Speaking Children

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    Foorin is a music unit made up of elementary school children with music and lyrics produced entirely by Kenshi Yonezu. Their single Paprika was released on August 15, 2018. Following auditions for native English-speaking children, Yonezu formed Foorin team E to create an English version of Paprika

    Since the debut of Foorin’s song and dance video in 2018, the song appeared in collaboration with NHK Educational TV and has made multiple appearances in events across Japan, adding a sprinkle of fun to the lives of Japanese children. It has become one of the most phenomenal kid’s songs of the century. 

    Yonezu’s cover of the song became an instant hit among people of all generations and was well-received overseas. With a desire to make singing and dancing to Paprika more of a global sensation, he set about creating an English version of the song with native English-speaking children.

    Foorin team E consists of main vocalists Jasmine (10) and Corban (8) and chorus and dancers Len (12), Evangeline (12) and Clara (6).

    Foorin team E’s first-ever performance of Paprika will take place at ABU TV Song Festival in Tokyo on November 19 at NHK Hall and they will also perform alongside Foorin for the first time at Japan’s 70th NHK Kōhaku Uta Gassen. 

     

    Get together with your family and younger siblings to enjoy two exciting versions of this cheerful song.

     

    Foorin Artist Photo by Taro Mizutani

    Kenshi Yonezu Artist Photo by Tomokazu Yamada

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    All tickets are designated to specific time slots for each day. Pre-sale tickets for Ikebukuro opened on October 25 will close on October 31, so don’t miss out.

  • Shibuya PARCO Refurbishments Reveal Collaboration Exhibitions With AKIRA, AUTO MOAI, JUN INAGAWA And More

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    The new fully refurbished Shibuya PARCO shopping complex is set to reopen on November 22, 2019. When Shibuya PARCO closed for renovations in 2016, GALLERYX BYPARCO was moved to Spain-zaka in the centre of Shibuya. This November, GALLERY X will return to its home on the basement floor 1 of the shopping complex. 

    The first opening exhibition of GALLERY X is titled “AKIRA ART OF WALL Katsuhiro Otomo × Kosuke Kawamura AKIRA ART EXHIBITION” which will see an entire wall decorated in a collage of art by manga author and film director Katsuhiro Otomo and his legendary series AKIRA until May 2020. 

     

    The art wall is in fact a relocation of the AKIRA art wall that has existed at the infrastructure building site in Shibuya for almost two years. Parts of it was damaged over time, and so it will resurface at PARCO MUSEUM TOKYO on the 4th floor of the new Shibuya PARCO. That’s not all: there will also be valuable original works displayed as well as posters, 3D model recreations of things seen in AKIRA, the series soundtrack by Geinoh Yamashirogumi playing, 3D attractions where you can interact with a futuristic “Neo Tokyo” and much more. 

    AUTO MOAI (December 2019)

    Kazuki Iio (Zun) (December 2019)

    Misaki Tanaka (February ー March 2020)

    JUN INAGAWA (April 2020)

    The first exhibition will be followed by a strong lineup of exhibitions. The exhibition areas will be filled with a wide range of attractions, making it appealing for a wide range of people with different tastes. 

    * The above information and dates are subject to change at any moment without prior notification.

    GALLERY X is full of originality and is a source of the latest entertainment culture so please check it out. 

  • Poop-Themed Exhibition to Teach People All About Poop in Fukuoka

    20.September.2019 | SPOT

    Fukuoka PARCO and Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens are collaborating to hold a poop-themed exhibition entitled “Poop Exhibition: Poop Academy Cultural Festival in Fukuoka” on floor B1F of the south building of Fukuoka PARCO from September 27 to October 27.

    There will be many elements to the exhibition. The first of these is the language section where sentences written in Japanese will be draped all across one room, each with references to poop.

    Above photo taken from the Ikebukuro exhibition

    In the “Outdoor Lesson” corner, there will be cased displays of different animal droppings with descriptions, enabling people to see the different shapes and sizes poop comes in.

    In the “Poop Arithmetic 3rd Year Students” corner is a photo spot where you can pose like the Poop Maths Teacher as shown on the right.

    At the end of the exhibition there’s an exam room where you can take a test based on what you have learned from the exhibition.

     

    There’ll even be a range of original and exclusive merchandise.

    Postcard Set (5 Designs) – ¥400

    Folders – ¥300

    Toilet Roll – ¥348 / Character Tape Cutter – ¥700 / Leather Futon Books (2 Designs) – ¥500 Each

    Japan is having a poop craze right now, with the opening of the Unko Museum in Yokohama which is also set to arrive in Shanghai next month.

     

     

    *Photos are for illustrative purposes only. Listed prices are pre-tax. Event content subject to change.

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