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Jappu Rokku Sanpurā: S...
Julian Cope
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Jappu Rokku Sanpurā: Sengo Nihonjin Ga Donoyōni Shite Dokuji No Ongaku O Mosaku Shite Kitaka

3.97 of 5 stars 3.97  ·  rating details  ·  406 ratings  ·  31 reviews

In the 1960s rock ‘n’ roll music began crossing the Atlantic Ocean—with The Beatles and The Who leading the British Invasion of the United States—and the Pacific Ocean, as American and European rock slowly began to take hold in Japan. This insightful study from visionary rock musician Julian Cope explores what really happened when Western music met Eastern shores. The cl

375 pages
Published 2008 by Byakuyashobō (first published September 3rd 2007)
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The first chapter is Yoko Ono's first husband emptying their cutlery drawer into a piano and bashing out some John Cage I-Ching freak beats while she records the flushing of the toilets. Meanwhile, artists are locking out the public and releasing a single cockroach on to the gallery floor.

Then there's the Eleki Boom and all the young men are trying to be The Shadows. Absolutely no one's singing. Everyone goes mental when The Ventures tour.

The Beatles are invented and Japan falls in love with Gro
Nov 16, 2007 Tosh rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Rock n' Roll!
Julian Cope, cult-like British rocker galore who can actually put sentences together and does it well has written a great book on 60's crazy Japanese rock n' roll. Something that is actually quite close to my heart.

Now, silly me, I thought for sure Cope would write on the obvious (YMO) or on Hosono, Sakamoto, and maybe even the great and uber-fantastic Jun Togawa. But no!

Cope comes up with crazy bands for instance like the Flowers Travellin' Band - which sounds so insanely fantastic I am going
more music historians should write with extreme predjudice, we might read their books.
This is a great starting point for those curious about the now-defunct greats of the past, from Rallizes and their hikikomori frontman to Pepe and his howling stories about walking drugstores. Some have said that Cope's writing sits between tedium and masturbatory glee, and I tend to agree. Those who read Krautrocksampler will notice the many parallels Cope tries (sometimes successfully, sometimes not) to make between the two alternative scenes, sometimes letting his own language trip him up. By ...more
Postwar Japan soaked up western culture like a sponge. What it did with it after is the story of this book. We meet many Avant-Garde composers and artists (including a young, neurotic Yoko Ono before she met the famous John) as they work their butts off to get some recognition in the West, and particularly in the US. But as the music evolves, so does the realization by Japanese artists that they don't need the recognition as much as they need their own sounds. This book goes as deeply as I've ev ...more
Interesting exploration of Japanese post war political, economic, and social history as context for the cross-pollination of Japanese and Western experimental music via jazz, rock and pop. Cope's tastes take priority, naturally, and the focus is on experimental and psychedelic music, with Japanese rock and pop almost dismissed as being superficial and slavishly copyist. He's kinder about jazz, particularly in the creative collaborations between German and Japanese composers, and I'm now aware of ...more
Patrick Neylan
Just look at the cover: five Japanese longhairs hurtling along on motorbikes, stark naked. Admit it, you want this album, and you want it to be good.

Having refused to revise or republish Krautrocksampler, Cope has turned his attention to the even more obscure Japanese music scene of the 60s and 70s. In fact, the discussion of the Japanese art scene of the early 60s is one of the more fascinating sections (I'm dying to recreate one of High Red Center's art events outside my house).

Cope writes v
Alex V.
I have been wanting to read this for years and boom, nearly special ordered it from Amazon UK and boom! there it was at the goddamn library, waiting for me to pick it up.

This book is by and for the deep music nerd, not mere rockers but for those that believe there is a redemptive mysticism at play when certain people put on sunglasses and pick up guitars they can barely play; their souls knife through the fabric of everyday life. Julian Cope weaves tales of everyone from Frankie Avalon wannabes
An exploration into the history of Japan's post-war avant-garde, rock, and jazz scenes. Julian Cope makes you want to seek out bands like Rallizes, Flower Traveling Band, and Speed Glue and Shinki. He makes them sound like psychopomps to a cult underworld while still writing an immensely readable history of the personalities and tensions involved.
Kimmo Sinivuori
Cope continues his quest to educate us about the truly far-out fringes of Rock 'n' Roll that he started with the magisterial Krautrocksampler. Once again this is a top job. However, I can't give it the five stars that I awarded to the Krautrocksampler. The reason for that is that his subject this time is completely alien to me whereas I was aware, though not at all a connoisseur of the German Rock scene that Cope covers in his first sampler before I read the book. It meant that I could relate to ...more
Julian Cope writes with lots of enthusiasm and there are several funny parts, but I wouldn't recommend this book unless you really plan to start listening to the records mentioned here. It can be easy to get lost among all the names of these Japanese artists, and that makes the text a bit hard to follow sometimes.

However, if you want to learn about the Japanese rock scene of the 60s and 70s this is a great starting point, and there's plenty of good music recommendations to keep you busy for a wh
Patrick Marley
I scoured through this pretty fast, looking mostly for tidbits about Les Rallizes Denudes.
Cope makes it clear that this is an idiosyncratic and personal take on a very narrow strip of music, and Japrocksampler is all the better for that. Unlike some of the music described, this is a breezy read, nothing erudite-like like The Wire. It's also fairly episodic and the chapter on Experimental Japan (1961-69) is recommended for its efforts at piecing narrative while those on Les Rallizes Denudes and Speed, Glue & Shinki are a must for the raw guffaws.
I really dig reading Julian Cope. He reminds me in a way of Anthony Bourdain--his writing is natural, darkly funny, insightful, opinionated and totally entertaining. Like you are hanging out with a real friend--a really knowledgeable exciting and free spirited friend. I am a fan of the mysterious Les Rallizes Desnudes so I was excited to hear their story. I ended up getting turned on to so much great sounding stuff and just loved every minute of it.
Definitely worth reading, but it's kind of an eccentric history by an eccentric guy. Wish there were more books on this subject, but it does go a long way to helping someone uninitiated understand what makes the Japanese rock tradition so unique. It's comprehensive and often insightful if somewhat Eurocentric. It got me into Les Rallizes Denudes and it made me want to read more Julian Cope in spite of myself.
A very informative, but at the same time entertaining account of the Japanese post-war music scene and its leading figures. It's opinionated, but always enthusiastic. There are a few mistakes in the transcriptions of the Japanese names, but that's the only quibble. It introduces the reader to a lot of music that would have otherwise remained undiscovered.
Aug 25, 2010 Leah is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
I'm not very far in, but so far I am finding this a bit like reading a long list of Japanese musicians, with the occasional US one thrown in.

But I shall perservere as when he is not writing lists, I really enjoy Julian Cope's writing style, particularly in the first chapter where he went into the political climate in Japan as a background.
Far too detailed and intense a book for me, I got a few chapters in and had to give up as it was just not holding my interest. I hadn't heard of a lot of the musicians mentioned and so didn't connect with them. Interesting to learn that Yoko Ono was married before she met John Lennon though :)
Dec 19, 2007 christopher rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested in 50-70s Japanese music
Really great if you are into the subject. Julian Cope's writing has improved a lot since Head On and Krautrocksampler and is a lot clearer and funier now. I learned a lot about Japanese psych rock, group sounds, eleki, and modern classical music from this. Lots of great stories here.
Julian Cope knows what he's writing about and inserts much of his fire-starter personality into the proceedings. This sounds like far-out shitte (look at that cover photo of the Travellin' Flower Band) and I look forward to hearing some of the sounds about which he's writing.
Not sure how Julian Cope managed to make the incredible music he categorizes dull but he does. I love his writing on - you should check it out. This book is good as a reference for checking out crazy records - but as a read it's surprisingly tiresome.
i love this guy's enthusiasm for his subject matter even if i rarely agree with his assessments. one person's 'basement hard psych mind fuck from the cosmos' is another person's rinkydink jazz fusion, i suppose. that far east family band album sounds like boston.
the hype-up style writing of Cope on this one is a bit annoying (I guess the editor in the Japanese translation made various corrections on what Cope's wild claims), but it's a pretty good read especially for ppl not that knowledge about Japanese 'angura' music
5 Stars because there aren't that many key texts on Japanese Rock music. It is well worth a read however, and Copey is pretty genuine in his love of all such things (see also Krautrocksampler, sadly out of print however).
I want this man to review every genre of music. Unbelievably fun, badass, and crazy. Take the image of the book and imagine 300 pages along this language. Nuts!!
Indispensable history of Japanese psych-rock. Pick this up before getting into J.A. Seazer, Shinki Chen, or any of the other galaxy of artists in their general orbit(s).
Could've used more depth, sweep, and detail, but a pleasantly enthused introduction and annotated listening guide to a nice chunk of underground Japanese music.
J Allan
Whatever it's flaws, still essential to a Japanese psych nerd like myself... and very enthused and entertaining as with all of Cope's writings.
I only have 3 of Julian's Top 50. I better get busy...somebody burn me a Speed Glue and Shinki CDR!
The chapters on Flower Travellin' Band and Las Rallizes Desnudes make this book indispensable.
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Julian Cope (born Julian David Cope, on 21 October 1957) is a British rock musician, author, antiquary, musicologist, poet and cultural commentator. Originally coming to prominence in 1978 as the singer and songwriter in Liverpool post-punk band The Teardrop Explodes, he has followed a solo career since 1983 and initiated musical side projects such as Queen Elizabeth, Brain Donor and Black Sheep. ...more
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