Back in December of 1992, while I was attending the University I graduated from in Japan, I taught conversational English at various schools, students' homes, and even at government funded recreation centers. In the article below I was interviewed while in the middle of such a class at the equivalent of a YMCA there. The interview, on why I enjoyed Karaoke, made it into a newspaper, and I was sent the clipping after it hit the press. "Tanoshiku utatte, nakama wo hirogeru" - the big quote in the middle says "Have fun singing, and make friends". I had my favorite leather jacket on and what passed for a young guy's fuzzy facial hair. I spoke about how I had fun as a vocalist in a band in high school and enjoyed the convenience of Karaoke bars/boxes. I recall the article not being 100% accurate as to what I actually said, but it was just something I thought I'd scan in before it gets too old. Speaking of which, 1992?! Yeah, I feel old now. Heck, even the paper looks old...
I was the lead singer of a Japanese pop band in the early to mid 1990's called "Unit Bath". The band had been going for some time before I joined with Shingo Katano, the bassist as the lead vocalist, but he wanted to focus on his bass and songwriting, so I was asked to perform vocals after a friend heard me at a karaoke bar. I also was asked to "translate" lyrics more or less (emphasis on less), and as time went on my choice of lyrics became largely unrelated to the originals until they were all original lyrics I wrote. The band members wanted me to sing in English as it was a bit unusual and fun for them. I co-wrote the music for one song "Come Alive", but the rest were pre-existing tunes that Shingo wrote. He was a great guy to work with. We practiced weekly for about a year and had some studio recordings done by a pro agent who insisted that we not spread them around freely. We only had one live performance, however (many of our practice sessions were just for the fun of getting together and live performances didn't really enter our minds until much later), and the band members went their separate ways after I graduated from college and went to work translating and teaching. Scans of a handout from our live performance can be found below. Click for larger sizes. The option to "zoom" should appear when you click the individual images and follow to Image Shack.
Back in the late 90's I had some articles printed in a Japanese gaming magazine. I established ties with the publisher prior to leaving Japan for a temporary stay in New York where I worked for a while, hence the title of the series: "Correspondence from (a) New York Gamer" (pink text near the bottom of the cover above). The magazine was primarily for Magic: the Gathering, a collectible card game that was popular at the time in Japan, but my articles focused on different alternatives and other games. I've written other things, but this was the most fun I had with published articles in Japanese.
See scans from two of the articles below: