Before the 7th grade I was really into Linkin Park and MuDvAyNe. I could name all of the members like nothing. In the 7th grade I had this math teacher who couldn't really teach me math. He was this hip Japanese American guy with a face tan thanks to his trendy sunglasses. I think he sometimes rode a motorcycle to school and played with an RC car. Man, this guy was cool. Too bad my math skills went down hill largely due to him. I was too busy trying to be a well assimilated Asian American like him. I think he was banging white women too. Long story short, after spring break he came back and showed us a CD he bought and told us about how he randomly partied with one of Japan's biggest acts. I mean, this group is so big that they have two dancers who are considered as members of the band. I'm talking about Dragon Ash. The first time I heard, "Rock the Beat", it changed my life. Then I went towards a spiral towards my current views of Asian elitism.
You're wondering why I even enjoy Japanese music when I don't understand the lyrics. It's not about that. It's about the quality of the music. The originality and various genres that have been adapted so well by the Japanese. The Japanese have done really unique things with rock music, and I don't mean the visual kei J Rock trannie music. This isn't J Pop. This isn't long haired freaks dressed like Power Rangers. This is about quality music, ranging from ska to techno rap. I used to spend hours a day researching and finding new music. I own complete discographies from many groups. My music collection at its peaked reached almost 200 GB. For an 8th grade at that time, that was a lot. In fact, I think I was one of the first people at my high school to own an iPod Clickwheel. Thinking back now that was a complete waste of money. Electronics really have cheapened down within the last five years. But in summation, language wasn't the problem. I learned to sing a long to my favorite tunes and, I listened to plenty of English centric bands from Japan too.
There's just something about seeing Asians play rock music that really inspired me. I had my own band briefly, some of you know that. I wasn't very good though, but I felt proud to see able Asians play original rock music. This turning point in my life cut me off from American music for about 10 years. In fact, I didn't know American music at all. In fact, Vietnam should be credited with revising my interest with old school American hip hop. Though, hip hop isn't my favorite genre. I'm a fan of rock, but I also like every other genre too. I like catchy melodies and rhythm. I prefer male vocals over female vocals. I don't like anything too loud nor too depressing. I do admit that I haven't been able to get new music like I once did. It's okay though, there's plenty of music in my collection that I still haven't really devoted enough time to. Though, I gotta praise YouTube for making looking up samples a lot easier.
I seriously miss cruising in my slammed car and blasting Japanese music. That was fun. I really miss that.
So repeat the tradition, I'd like to recommend a few quality groups that are dear to me. I know I'll be listening to these musicians for years to come. Now remember, it's impossible to judge a group based off of one song, so give at least an entire album a try before you decide.
Dragon Ash... I've been listening to them since 7th grade. Are they my current favorite band? No. I really don't have a favorite. But I grew up with this group. I idolized the lead singer. I still do. Below was the song that my math teacher played for us.
I also recommend Art School, Anatakikou, Fuji Fabric, Leo Imai, Oceanlane, School Food Punishment, Straightener, The Back Horn, Suneo Hair, The Novembers, Wrong Scale, Kohei Japan, Karen, Group_Inou,