This J-pop princess' songs have been downloaded over 40 million times with album sales over 950,000. Popular for not only her voice, but her style and relatable lyrics, her latest tour sold out to 100,000 fans, and also included stops in Taiwan and Hong Kong, cementing her spot as the next prominent diva from Japan.
TOKYO SKA PARADISE ORCHESTRA
Based on ska, this band calls their own variant of the genre, “Tokyo Ska.” This unique band tours internationally, including festivals such as; Glastonbury, Mexico's Vive Latino, Bonnaroo and Coachella. The band will celebrate their 25th anniversary in 2014.
Charan Po Rantan
Sisters Momo (vo) and Koharu (accordion) started as street performers in 2009. Calling their music “alternative gypsy chanson,” they continue to gain acclaim for their eccentric performances, colorful costumes and infectious music, including gigs in SXSW 2013, Canada, the UK and Taiwan.
Since her first major-label single "Level 42" was released in June 2004, Kaela has put out 19 singles and seven original albums. Now one of Japan’s prominent stars, she continues to appear on TV and in advertisements while also playing both festivals and her own solo tours. In March 2012, she put on a 3-day performance at Budokan, and most recently, her music video for "Wonder Volt" served as an inspiration for Tim Burton's animated film, Frankenweenie.
A new force in the Jpop-rock world, LiSA debuted with the 2010 anime series “Angel Beats!” and also sang theme songs for “Fate/Zero,”“Sword Art Online” and other hit anime. Her charismatic personality and energetic performances have charmed fans in Japan, Singapore, Shanghai, LA, Jakarta, Taipei, etc.
This rock band debuted in 2004, gaining popularity with their genre-blending sound. After frontman Shimura passed away in 2009, the remaining members continue the band in his memory. Recent songs tied up with hit film “Moteki” and anime “Space Brothers.”
As half of the famous R&B duo, CHEMISTRY, he made his solo debut in 2012, releasing a dance and ballad focused first album in Japan and Thailand. He is also active in acting and narrating, guest starring in an Indonesian karate film and performed in Jakarta in 2013.
Unison Square Garden
This three-piece rock band features Kosuke Saito's clear vocals resonating with an edgy band ensemble, creating a unique band sound. Also famous for singing the theme songs for hit anime “Tiger & Bunny,” the band continues to widen the scope of their music.
This contemporary rock band consists of four young men who boast jaw-dropping musicality and energetic live performances. They've played in the US, Australia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea and Vietnam, and their songs have been featured in the “NARUTO” anime series.
This Harajuku-style dance-rock visual band is popular not only among Japanese teens but overseas fans, such that they've completed three solo world tours already. In 2013, they toured all 47 prefectures in Japan, capping off with a Budokan concert in January 2014.
Said to be Asia's new icon for nu-metal, this five-piece band creates English-lyric music that transcends genres and borderlines. 2013 saw them release a new album in over 10 countries and they continue to tour with some of the biggest names in metal.
Since their famous Okuda Tamio-produced 1996 debut "Ajia no Junshin," this pop duo has put out a string of smash hits and had a US-based cartoon produced in their name. The band continues to actively engage as one of Japan's most iconic duos, and most recently rocked the stage at Taiwan's FORMOZ festival.
This unique cello-playing singer-songwriter has garnered attention for creating a dream-like world with her music, and is frequently invited to anime conventions such as Sakura-con, Japan Expo, and Animethon 2013. She is also an avid illustrator.
Won Japan Ani-song Grand Prix in 2010 out of 10,189 contestants, and performed at ANIMAX MUSIX! in front of 12,000 people. Her 1st single, “Morning Arch” is the opening theme of the anime series, “A-Channel” while her 2nd single was linked to “Natsume Yujincho Shi.”
This all-girl pop-rock band debuted in 2005. With their cute but pure rock sound, they have a loyal following in and out of Japan, where they performed at SXSW 2010 and toured the US. In 2011, the band reformed as a two-piece but continued to rock out.
Base Ball Bear
With 3 guys and 1 girl, this pop-rock quartet formed in their teens, and made their major debut with EMI Japan in 2006. Their albums were subsequently released in Taiwan and they celebrated their 10th anniversary with a successful concert at the famous Budokan.
This unpretentious three-piece rock band is popular among a wide-range of fans thanks to their songs being used in popular TV drama and anime series. With their honest lyrics and shouts of emotion during their performances, they continue to charm audiences.
Open Reel Ensemble / Braun Tube Jazz Band
Formed by performance media-artist, Ei Wada, Open Reel uses reel decks and computers as instruments, while his solo project, The Braun Tube Jazz Band, involves striking Braun tubes. Well-regarded overseas, ORE perform at European festivals and at Issey Miyake's fashion shows.
Japan's iconic jazz/fusion band made their debut in 1978, and has since become an Asian representative of the genre. The 35 year-old band performs constantly in Asia, including Korea, Thailand, and Taiwan, where they have been enthusiastically welcomed.
One of Japan's most famous contemporary violinists, she won the Germany Student Music Concours at 14. Along with her musical skills, her graceful style and looks made her a staple on national TV, constantly collaborating with pop artists and even hosting TV shows.
This four-piece rock band was formed when they were in their first year of high school. They made their major debut in 2010, and have evolved into a genre-bending rock band. Energetic vocalist, Daichi Watanabe, has also won accolades for his acting as well.
The band's daring, bad-boy appearance and performances catapulted them into fame as a household name in Japan. They recently hosted a two day outdoor festival, Kishidan Expo, drawing 50,000 attendees and invited superstars like Ayumi Hamasaki.
UNICORN / Tamio Okuda
Unicorn debuted in 1987 and is one of Japan's most famous rock bands. After a nearly 19-year long hiatus, the band made their comeback in Jan 2009. They recently celebrated their 25th anniversary in 2012 and penned the opening song of the anime “Space Brothers.”
Takeshi Hosomi / the HIATUS
As ex-ELLEGARDEN's frontman, English-speaking Hosomi formed the HIATUS in 2009 with 7 prominent musicians, and together continue to redefine genres with their experimental take on music. Most recently, Hosomi rocked the stage at Taiwan's MEGAPORT 2013 and Grand Mint Fes in Korea.
Famous as a former member of Pizzicato Five, she is also famous as a cultural icon for “Shibuya-style” and Japan's New wave scene in the 90s. In addition to her music, she is also active on a number of artistic, cultural, and fashion-related fronts as a model and designer.
A club jazz trio project by the keyboard player, Shunsuke Watanabe. Named after from Peanuts' character, Schroeder, the piano trio plays music imagining the thoughts of a boy who has contemporary musical ears through listening to classical, jazz, dance, electronic music.
One of the most prominent Japanese female vocalists. She's known for her collaboration with artists such as Yellow Magic Orchestra, creating music spanning a wide range of styles and genres.
The frontman Kinoshita Riki's drive to blend powerful pop guitar lines with dramatic vocals have influenced over a whole generation of bands and audiences alike in Japan. They signed on to ki / oon Music.
Got her start as vocalist of the pop band “Cymbals”. She has gone on to have a highly successful solo career, having her songs used prominently in commercials and collaborating with numerous artists.
Musician and producer Fujiwara got his start as a DJ in the ‘80s. He is an active participant in Japan's street culture and fashion scene, influencing teenager trends and style.
A four-piece psychedelic rock band formed in 2008. Quickly made a name for themselves. Following up a successful Canadian tour in 2010, the band releases their second full-length album in May 2011.
Starting his career in the rock band Scanch, ROLLY is a guitarist, vocalist, and producer, as well as an actor. His unique and theatrical personality has built a strong fan base, and his memorable appearance in the film "Suicide Circle" has gained him many fans abroad as well.
The former vocalist of JUDY AND MARY, YUKI started her solo career in 2002. Her distinctive voice and powerful live presence gained her many fans. She performed a sold out concert at the Tokyo Dome, making her the first female artist to perform there as a solo act.
This renowned young cello player collaborates with other classical ensembles and other genres of music, including KOBUDO, his permanent trio project with Shakuhachi (Japanese traditional flute) player and pop composer/pianist.
Scott & Rivers
Scott & Rivers is a rock duo consisting of Scott Murphy of ALLiSTER and Rivers Cuomo of Weezer fame. Sharing a deep love of Japanese culture, they have created original songs in Japanese.
This duo was formed by Lida and YURA-sama, former members of the popular Visual-kei band Psycho le Cemu in 2005. They also have solo projects, Lida's Ninjaman Japan and YURA-sama' s Brother.
An upcoming idol and high school student, she is also an anime otaku, with passion for games, VOCALOID, and Disney (100 park visits a year!). A natural born singer/actress, she also recently voiced anime roles for “Love Lab” and “ROBOT GIRLS Z.”
One of Japan's most promising young actresses, this former model from Okinawa got her big break with 2012's “Himizu.” For this role, she won the Marcello Mastroianni Best New Young Actress Award at the Venice Int'l Film Festival, and Best Newcomer at Japan's Academy Awards.
An authentic action actress, Rina started karate since young and has a 2nd degree black belt. She debuted in 2009's “High Kick Girl!” won numerous awards for “Dead Sushi,” including the Best Action Actress Award in Japan. She guest stars in an Indonesian karate film in 2013.
Hashimoto is one of the most watched young actresses in Japan. She appeared in 10 films, including the Japanese Academy Award's Best Picture, “The Kirishima Thing.”
Sony Music Artists Inc. is an artist and talent management company and a wholly owned subsidiary of Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc.