ANN Tamashii no Radio (2009.09.26): Extracts
Michishirube Tour / Ryoma-den
People often don’t notice that I’m around, it’s true! It happens all the time!
Like in Nagoya, the person who helps me bring my guitars on-stage to change is Oba-kun, I’ve known him for more than 10 years. I don’t remember whether it was before or after the show, but I was in the dressing room checking out the run-down list of songs on the wall, next to the Cooler Box. It was my own dressing room! I was drinking some water and mulling things over when Oba came in. He seemed like he was looking for someone.
“What is it?” I asked him. “Oh!… You’re here!” he said.
“I’ve been standing right here all this time. Stop fooling around, you.”
A guy as tall as me, in my own dressing room, who else could it be?
And, it was even more incredible yesterday! I was in NHK shooting the opening credit scenes for “Ryoma-den”. Which also means, I was totally dressed as Ryoma, right? At the beginning, the AD (assistant director) stood in my place to check out the lights and all. Soon after, thinking it was almost time, I walked over from the direction of the camera and was almost at his (AD) side. Then he called out “OK, we’re going to start soon, Ryoma-san! Ryoma-san!……….Oh! You’re already here!!” (laugh)
But I was decked out from head to toe as Ryoma already! I was standing just next to him, and he didn’t notice I was there at all! That’s why I think I’m…….totally inconspicuous. I don’t have any of that “star glamour” in me.
It’s true! Like Oba-kun who’s known me for more than 10 years. I was standing in front of the wall and he came in from the left …(laugh) This really happens all the time! Places like waiting rooms are typical. The same thing happened in the Music Station waiting room a while back too.
That’s why, “Your spot is over here, where we have this light on you.” Then if I stand on that spot, I’ll look more like a star. If I go about on the streets, I have no star glamour at all. My clothes don’t stand out, since they’re just casual sportwear. No wallets on chains, no ear-rings, no necklaces or other accessories, because I wouldn’t like to lose any of them (laugh!!)
■ Letter from a listener who’s going for his public exams this year. He’s playing on the computer everyday and has no wish to prepare for his exams. He wants to be able to do something about this “inability to stand up to temptation.”
F: I think it’s OK if you let yourself fail utterly once! After this fall, you wouldn’t want to lose to yourself again next time. If you haven’t had the experience of such a painful all-out failure, you’d never be able to conquer your temptations. I find myself in similar situations quite often.
Pressured on all sides by different jobs, like writing lyrics and melodies, I really don’t get them all done until the last second. (I need to keep) bearing in mind the warning “ If I keep going like this, I won’t be able to make it on time….”, then I can finally rush them through. I can’t help it if it gives you the impression that I’m just trying to find excuses, but sometimes I do start to lose myself if I get too focused (on one thing). When I was writing the lyrics for “Keshin”, I sunk myself in too deep. Just one song took me a month, 3 versions. In the end, I found it more and more difficult to decide, I couldn’t make a good judgement call.
“That’s it!”, it was only after I finally wrote that (deciding) first line, that I could move forward nicely. But before that, I couldn’t get anything out. If I have to write lyrics in a restless and anxous state of mind, they will never feel right to me. I won’t say which song it is, but I’d keep thinking how much better it would be if that song wasn’t worded like this. So, there shouldn’t be anything wrong, if you really did have a total failure.
■ During a Tour, you’d usually need to go to the next leg immediately after one leg finishes. When do you have the time to rearrange your music / lineup?
F: During the rehearsals. Before the actual show, when we’re rehearsing and checking the acoustics, we do it bit-by-bit. Because we are all musicians who can play it out simply at the first sight of the score. We’d talked about it and then request the lighting, stage and other related staff to co-ordinate with us. We’d done this in the past too, re-arranging the music bit by bit. There won’t ever be two similar concert tours, would it? There is one and only one “Michishirube” Live Tour, even if the run-down were to be the same as this time, it will still be a different tour…….that’s why the latest (performance) will always be the best, the latest will be the strongest. Perhaps the last show will be the most awesome performance because (everything) is at its most mature.
But I can’t be sure about myself, because I’m old now, maybe I won’t have the strength to keep singing (laugh). My emotions are very high, but whether my strength can match up, you’ll have to go and ask it yourself (laugh). Come, you want to ask my body? And after we ask,………. “it’s very difficult” (laugh), but I will try my best.
Oh? It’s only 38 shows even after we add in Inasayama? That’s not a very good number to end…. I’m 40 this year, wouldn’t it be better if we can have 40 shows? Where can we add another two? Has Imagine Studio (NHK Radio broadcast studio) been booked already?……Don’t you think so?………38 doesn’t seem complete!
Ah……..tomorrow is the last day (27.09). If you can come, please enjoy yourselves, if you can’t, please wait till the next tour! (laugh)
~ Extract from ANN Tamashii no Radio (2009.09.26) ~