Public Bath Press Titles (Ginga, Kan Mikami, Dokkiri, Gaseneta Wasteland, Creating Enka)
"Gaseneta was a Tokyo band of the late 1970s, the early days of indies and punk in Japan. Gaseneta played an uncompromising version of what would later be called "artcore," never repeating themselves. Their bassist, Osato Toshiharu, who would go on to study and teach French literature and philosophy, wrote this memoir/novel while living and studying in Paris. Gaseneta never recorded, but many live tapes have been issued on CD and more will be appearing soon. Anyone with an interest in Japanese indies, the Minor scene of Tokyo in the seventies, literature or philosophy will find something of interest here!"
Japanese Indies Music
""Dokkiri! unfolds the rich history of Japan's unique underground music worlds - from experimental rock to psyche to punk to Noise - and no one could do this better and more organically than David Hopkins. Hopkins is that rare scene historian who was there at the beginning: and he's still there, recounting the details and telling the stories that no one else can remember. Maniacs and beginners alike, start here!" -David Novak, Japanoise
"For me and my friends in the American underground, the music of the Japanese underground was beyond exotic. It may as well have been from Mars. The occasional examples that made it out of Japan and into our hands and rare concert appearances were intoxicating. The bands all had strong identities, obviously incubated in an active scene, probably complete with its own legends and apocrypha, to which we had no access and remained ignorant of. We could only wonder at the artifacts and concerts. The bands we got to hear were astonishing. Simultaneously alien and familiar, the musicians were often both gifted with expert technique and compelled to abandon technique. They were simultaneously artful and artless in a way that no Western bands could approximate. I longed to know their stories, and through Dokkiri! I finally have a glimpse. This book fills in many of the gaps in my own appreciation of the Japanese independent music scene and provides context for sound, lyrics and personalities that were all opaque mysteries until now. As an outsider to the Japanese underground, I have renewed respect for the people who built it and am grateful it was written." -Steve Albini"
"Another knock out translation by Kato David Hopkins on Japan's criminally untranslated musical history - this time on "Enka," described on the back cover as "the most loved, most hated, and most Japanese of all popular music."
From the site:
"Wajima Yusuke's history of the Japanese popular music that is almost universally considered to be traditional but that is not. A great history not just of the music, but also of the political and social climate of the postwar era, especially the 1950s and 1960s.
Highly recommended. When this book first appeared, a few years ago, it was considered a radical rehistoricizing of something thought to be common sense. Common sense has since realigned itself along Wajima's lines. A complete index of names referenced in the book is available online."
Kan Mikami: A Life In Folk
"A Life in Folk (and other bitter songs), the English translation of legendary folk singer Mikai Kan's autobiography is now available. The book comes with a CD of Mikami live in Sapporo in February of 2017. The book is a the complete translation of Folk ni Ikiru, with additional autobiographical writing and interview material added."