Thursday, December 31, 2015

I Was a Teenage Collector's Item!

"Your regrets aren't what you did, but what you didn't do. 
So take every opportunity." - -Cameron Diaz

That's me in the red circle. I must have been about 23 or so.

(English follows below) 僕の昔のバンド、「The Rotters」一発屋バンドが解散した後、僕は他のバンド「Wuffy Dogs」を結成した。
かれこれ34年以上も昔 まだカリフォルニアにいた時のこと。
そのバンドもあまりぱっとせずに1枚のシングルレコードを作って解散した。
それがなんと、夏にシングルレコードが1枚約16.6万円の値段が付く希少盤となっている! (#8: http://www.discogs.com/lists/Most-expensive-items-sold-in-Discogs-Marketplace-for-August-2015/257975) 4曲のうちの3曲は僕が書きました! 写真に僕が一番右。芸術家は死んで有名になるが、俺様はまだ生きているぜ!


When I was young, I was in a "One-Hit Wonder" Punk Rock Band. The band's name was "The Rotters." We played with the Dead Kennedys, Fear, Black Flag, the Germs, Angry Samoans and a bunch of other 1979 Los Angeles Punk Band's whose names I can't remember. I've written about it here: I Was a Teenage Punk Rocker - Why Dedication Beats Fanaticism Anyday! Even for Punk Rock or Success in Any Field! (If link doesn't work, copy & paste this into your browser: modernmarketingjapan.blogspot.jp/2012/04/i-was-teenage-punk-rocker-why.html)

I'm glad I did that and played in that band. It was a great experience.

(Left to right: Johnny Brewton, Peter MacKenzie, Bob Rogers, me (crouching with rifle). Dead on the ground was our dear friend Arya Sabahi.)

The Rotters played lots of shows with famous bands and we had, actually, more than one song released on 7 inch analogue vinyl single... I once saw the first pressing of our debut single on sale in a record store for $750 (USD). That was about 20 years ago. 

I have heard that our second single is even more valuable. 

After that band broke up, I floundered in a few other bands, but never really did anything that was as exciting as the Rotters... 

I thought... 

Until this morning... 

This morning I opened up my Facebook and my jaw dropped to my socks! My old friend who was the drummer in another band project we had made in the early 80s had tagged me in a post showing where a record we made back in those days had sold at auction for $1,350 this year!

I couldn't believe it! "The Wuffy Dogs" makes the Top 10 list for the most expensive items sold on an Internet music auction site!? What? 

The Wuffy Dogs hit #8 for the Top Ten most expensive records sold in August 2015? Wow! Check it: http://www.discogs.com/lists/Most-expensive-items-sold-in-Discogs-Marketplace-for-August-2015/257975

In brief: A few years after the Rotters broke up, my friend's and I made this band, called the Wuffy Dogs. It was my university room-mate Peter MacKenzie and my older brother, Bob and a really talented young drummer named Johnny Brewton and me. We never played live but I was convinced that some of the songs I had written could be radio hits (again) so I conned my friends to get together and record some tracks.

The recordings were done at some local studio (I forget the name) near my home. We recorded 4 songs, I wrote 3 of them and sang (screamed) on those 3 too. Pete wrote the "Radio-friendly" single and sang on that.

When the recordings were done, I tried to get us aired on KROQ in Los Angeles, but there was no fire. Nothing was happening with this record. I was kind of surprised. It seemed so easy with the Rotters.

We pressed about 250 or so of these records and I threw most of them away when I moved to Japan in 1983.

I hear that record collectors today call this particular record one of the "Holy Grail" of 7 inch records from those days.

But, back then, when we made these records, I couldn't give them away! Now, this summer, someone paid over thirteen-hundred dollars for one!? WTF?!

I was so happy to see this news! It was the best Christmas present I have received in years. Thank you so much for allowing me to brag!

To think that the effort we made over 30 years ago finally gets some recognition today... Unbelievable!

As my dear friend Ken aways says, "Dream as if you will live forever. Live as if you will die tomorrow!"

Thank you, er, destiny or fate, or just plain good luck, and being in the right place at the right time and making the effort.

Folks, live without regrets! - Mike in Tokyo Rogers

* As one of my dear friends pointed out, even after all these years, it's nice to still be wanted.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Mike (in Tokyo) Rogers' Top 50 Best Songs of 2015 (With Music Videos!)

(Me with The 50 Kaitenz! Left to right: Dory, Bogie, Me, Danny (I'm the handsome one!) - Go "Like" their FB page! https://www.facebook.com/the50kaitenz/)

Mike (in Tokyo) Rogers' Top 50 Best Songs of 2015 マイク・ロジャースの2015年のトップ50曲
(1から50の順番リストじゃない!)
These are my favorite songs and/or something from a favorite artist of the year. There is no order from 1 ~ 50. These are just my favorite 50 listed as I played them on my Year-End radio show special. Now, some of these songs were not released in 2015... In fact, a few are several years old. But so what? I play alternative and underground stuff so this year was the first time I had heard them and it's my countdown, so there! Also, these songs were chosen by my iTunes software as the Top 50 songs I played from October, 1 2014 until October 30, 2015.... Songs that I have been heavily playing since November (and there's lots of them) will be on the 2016 chart, so stay tuned!

I have placed videos with the songs whenever and where ever possible.
The Smittens - One Hundred Roses 

Fabienne Delsol - Laisse tomber les filles 

Knife Pleats - One Step Too Far 

Messer Chups - Sex Euro And Evils Pop 

Barrence Whitfield and the Savages - The Corner Man

The 50 Kaitenz - サムクックが聞こえる 
This is also one of Japan's best and, by far most entertaining bands. These guys are the closest thing to Japan's Ramones while retaining kick ass originality and great tunes. Check them if you can!
(Sorry. No video for this song, but try this one: The 50 Kaitenz - Killer
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y8HZwXRr1Mc)

The 50 Kaitenz

Mark Ronson - L.S.F. 

She & Him - Sunday Girl 

Prima Donna - Deathless 

Fabienne Delsol & The Bristol - Questions I Can't Answer

Clara Belle and the Creeps - I Just Wanna Dance
The Just Joans - Hey Boy...You're Oh So Sensitive! 

The Ettes - Take it With You 

Mirror Trap - New Trance 
(Sorry. No video for this song, but try this one: The Mirror Trap - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VvZEWO2TsVM)

Doll Skin - Family of Strangers

Lola Dutronic - Go Fuck Yourself 
(Well there's no video for this great song and I think the only radio show in the world that plays this great tune is my show. But never fear, Lola Dutronic had one of my Top 5 Fave Songs of 2014 and here it is! Enjoy! LOLA DUTRONIC - Everybody Loves You When You're Dead
 
Girlpool - Alone At The Show 

Kovak - My Boyfriend Is A Rockstar 
(Awesome tune. No video available. So try this out: Kovak - Sex Electric https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AadcyBl00NM)

The Routes - Day & Night

Allo Darlin' - Kiss Your Lips

Messer Chups - Difficult Love 

Barrence Whitfield and the Savages - Rock N Roll Baby

The Jacques - Pretty DJ

Messer für Frau Müller - The Best Girl In the USSR 

THE PRIVATES - ACTION WOMAN

(Japan's "The Privates" have been compared to the famed Buzzcocks. The lead singer of this band, Tatsuji Nobuhara will also star in "A Japanese Rock N Roll Ghost Story." Check it! But, sorry. No video for this song, but try this one: The Privates - Drive All Night: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dixV0AAxsdE)

Vienna Ditto - Feeling Good 

Courtney Barnett - Pedestrian At Best 

THE MONSTERS - BLOW UM MAU MAU 

A.J. and the Jiggawatts - Get Wild 

The Man - Gabba Gabba Hey

Potty Mouth - Cherry Picking 

Taffy - Suicidal Bunny 

Mozes And The Firstborn - Peter Jr. 

Messer Chups - Go Satan Go 

The Just Joans Some Boys Are Bigger Than Others

Su ko D Koi - Busu (Ugly)

The Jackets - Wasting My Time

The Two Tens - Scene

Dog Party - Peanut Butter Dream 

Titty Twister - SPEEDBALL BABY

The History of Apple Pie - You're So Cool

Wolf Alice - Moaning Lisa Smile

THE NEATBEATS - Snakey Baby

China Rats - To Be Like I 

Dirty Fences - Judy (Don't Go)

Have You Ever Seen The Jane Fonda Aerobic VHS? - Shämäläin 

The HaveNots - Rock'n'Roll Weekend 

Purple - Wallflower

UME - Chase It Down 

Motobunny - Let's Go Out



----------------------

Thanks to Kona Cindy, Alex Kish, Kayla Williams, Dave McLean, Aya Fukuta, Ken Nishikawa and Rodney Bingenheimer (Rodney on the Roq). You guys are the only people in the entire music industry who teaches me music that I don't already know about. That's what happens to you when you work in the music industry and you become a 60-year-old man. Really!

Friday, December 25, 2015

Santa Goes to Children's Hospital to Visit With Children with Incurable Diseases Charity


Every year, Nanbyounet (Children with Incurable Diseases Charity) helps Santa Claus to visit children's hospitals around Japan to bring Christmas cheer parents of kids with cancer and incurable diseases.
毎年、クリスマスに難病やガン等で入院している子供達のところに
サンタクロースが訪ねて行けるように難病ネットの方達は尽力してくれています。
難病ネットがどのような活動をしているのか是非ごらんください。http://www.nanbyonet.or.jp/

At Osaka's largest Children's Hospital

Nanbyounet is a very fine charity with a great group of people and volunteers that go out 365 days a year to help some of these desperately sick children and their parents. Please check what Nanbyounet is doing: http://www.nanbyonet.or.jp/

Santa tells me that he thinks that Nanbyonet.or.jp is one of, if not thee, most reputable charities in Japan. Nanbyonet.ot.jp helps to raise funds to give these children some happiness and enjoyment in their short time on this earth and to bring people closer together.


Besides Christmas events, Nanbyonet.or.jp also arranges camping for the kids, poolside and swimming events, arts and crafts, musical events and others to create enjoyment for these wonderful little people. Nanbyonet.or.jp also arranges training and support for the parents of these special needs children. 


This year, all the Santa Claus volunteers and his helpers got an early start and had the pleasure of going to a total of 17 hospitals all around Japan to visit several hundreds of children and their mothers and dads, grandmas and grandpas in the hospital.

Santa brought presents to all and took pictures for the folks and the kids to keep forever.


This year, we'd like to proudly announce and welcome a new Santa into our midst who did a special job at one of Tokyo's biggest children's hospitals this year. Stand up and take a bow, my dear friend, Roger Marshall. ロジャー・マーシャル サンタ どうもありがとうございます!

Santa Roger was a star at Juntendo Hospital this year! Well done!

どうもありがとうございます!Also, thanks so much to Honda Mutsuko for helping this year! 本田さん!本当ありがとうございました!感謝です!

Merry Christmas! メリークリスマス!



CHRISTMAS NOTE

Every day of every year, some child is struck down with a terrible disease. While medical science desperately searches for cures, there is something you and I can do to make these children's (and their parents) lives just a little bit better. We can volunteer our time or donate to a worthy cause.

Won't you consider all the good things you have and just how fortunate we really are and give some of your time or donations to a just cause?

You'll feel better about yourself. I know I do. I wish I could do more. Won't you help this Christmas season?

(Sorry Japanese only!)


Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Travel Video: 100km Walk Around Tokyo in 3 Days by Jacob Laukaitis


I received a wonderful video by a young traveler and businessman named Jacob Laukaitis. Jacob took a 100 kilometer walk around Tokyo and he took his camera with him and made this delightful video for us. 

Please enjoy! Travel Video: 100km Walk Around Tokyo in 3 Days

(If video doesn't play, click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fha5sOwGiOg)



Here is Jacob's personal introduction:

"I am Jacob Laukaitis, a 21 years old digital nomad, who's already been to more than 30 countries in the past 2 years. The main reason why I can travel is the company I co-founded, ChameleonJohn.com, because of the flexibility and remote income that it provides. Because of this, I can travel for 9-10 months a year. If you would like to find more information about me or my trip you can visit my personal website JacobLaukaitis.com and my Instagram profile where I post the best moments from my trips."



Wednesday, December 16, 2015

I’ve Seen Star Wars: The Force Awakens! Here is the Ending!



日本語はココです: 激速『スター・ウォーズ/フォースの覚醒』!http://bit.ly/1NwevBW

I’ve Seen Star Wars: The Force Awakens! 

Lots of people have been wondering what’s up with the new Star Wars movie. Some have high expectations; some expect Disney to screw it up!

But, as my regular readers know, I work in the mass media and I have had access to a private viewing of the film ! Yes! I have seen it and Disney doesn’t disappoint!

In the climax scene, Han Solo is valiantly (but vainly) fighting it out with the evil Darth Vader.

Chewbacca tries to help, but what good is a simian versus the Dark Side? Just as Vader is about to lop off Solo’s head and end his life, Buzz Lightyear appears yelling, “To infinity and beyond” as he zaps the light saber out of Vader’s hands and scoops up Solo in an exciting rescue scene!

Wow! What an exciting Disney ending! I told you that Disney, “Doesn’t disappoint”! No, they don't. But expect that they will make a Star Wars film that sucks as bad as the rest of them (excepting the original.)

OK? Now, no matter what happens, you won't be disappointed (too much). Just don't ever expect that this new movie to ever come close to the original and you won't be unhappy! (Creepin' Jesus, it's a Disney film fer cryin' out loud!) You can thank me later!

Have fun at the movies!

Japanese version of this blog is here: 激速『スター・ウォーズ/フォースの覚醒』! / I’VE SEEN STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS! robot55.jp/blog/激速『スター・ウォーズフォースの覚醒』!/

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Love Shibuya in Tokyo? New Parody Folk Video of 1970s Japan!


The latest music video from the F@NC Brothers. Production by Robot55 (Ken Nishikawa & Mike Rogers - Ken edited, I mostly slept on the sofa). 

This is a funny parody of 1970s Japanese Folk Music!

ファンコミュニケーションズの柳澤さん&松本さん(ザ ファンクブラザーズ)の新しいミュージックビデオです!制作はROBOT55のKenとMike(ほとんどKenが働きMikeはソファで昼寝してたけど)ヒット間違いなしの良い曲です!是非みてください。

ようこそ、渋谷一丁目一番地 〜Welcome to Shibuya, the street number one dash one〜 (If the video doesn't play, click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RjdrHWGUoR8)


Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Cool and Strange Music Countdown – Vol. 2: Dec. 8, 2015


It’s Dec. 8, 2015! In Japan, and in the USA (it’s Dec. 7 in America), that means today is “Pearl Harbor Day.” The anniversary of the day the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor! So that also means it’s time for me to “drop some real ‘bombs,’ hits and misses,” with the “Cool & Strange Music Countdown.”
Cool and Strange music isn’t just turds on the turntable! Sometimes the Cool & Strange music does include some cool tunes. For example, Dave Brubeck just passed away yesterday (R.I.P.) and his music can definitely be considered “Cool” – Dave Brubeck will be on the countdown someday, I promise! So don’t judge a book by its cover…. So, let’s get into our first song today; and this song is waaaaay cool.
At #3 is Messer Fur Frau Muller. Messer Fur Frau Muller is a duo from St. Petersburg, Russia. The band was founded by well-known guitarist and multi-talented composer and musician, Oleg Gitarkin with Oleg Kostrow. Messer Fur Frau Muller translates into “A knife for Mrs. Miller.” Today they perform as trio known as Messer Chups and they will most certainly be on the Cool and Strange Music Countdown in days and months to come. Go and “Like” the Messer Chups Facebook page. You can thank me later. (https://www.facebook.com/messerchups/)
#3) Best Girl from USSR https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z7ImFwXARf0
At #2 is an Elvis Presley impersonator from Sweden known as Eilert Pilarm. Pilarm is off-key and off-tempo, but could arguably be the most famous Elvis presley impersonator in the world. He released several records imaginatively titled Elvis I, II and III before signing to a label, which issued Greatest Hits in 1996. The world-famous DJ, John Peel, played Eilert Pilarm often and it was something of a Peel favourite. Eilert Pilarm has sold over 1 million records. Listen to this version of Jailhouse Rock. Hilarious… And, after many listens, it begins to sound, “right”… You’ll see.
#2) Eilert Pilarm – Jailhouse Rock https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8MiJTxlEdtQ
This week’s #1 is Zlad. Zlad is the brain-child of Santo Cilauro who is an Australian television and feature film producer, screenwriter, actor, author, comedian and cameraman; he is also an author and former radio presenter on the Triple M Network, and achieved worldwide fame with the viral video Elektronik Supersonik. This is pure genius. Check out the tortured English including new lexicon such as”offblast”, “downsplash” and “bestest.” Today, this is the even bestest video of today you will have seen today!
#1) Zlad – Electronic/Supersonic https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MNyG-xu-7SQ
Well, that’s it for today! Hope you have a great rest of the week and hope you stay Cool and Strange!
See last week's Cool and Strange Top 3 here: COOL AND STRANGE MUSIC COUNTDOWN – DEC. 1, 2015 (robot55.jp/blog/cool-strange-music-dec-1-2015/)

Rock N Roll Music and the Proof of the Existence of God!

I'm making a rock n roll movie. It's called, "Ghostroads - A Rock N Roll Ghost Story" Here's the trailer: https://vim...