Song by Yoko Kanno
Images by Greg Uchrin, Translation by utadafreak22 http://www.jpopasia.com/news/yoko-kannos-message-song-to-japan::5466.html
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A Personal Note
I had just finished watching an online movie late Thursday night/Friday morning when I saw the news about the disaster befalling Japan. Readers will know that I am an anime and J-horror movie fan. The images I saw were worse than any horror movie because they were real. I knew that this was what I would be devoting today’s blog to. But how to do it properly to express the fear, pain, sorrow and yet, hope for recovery that I wished to convey?
It seems that almost every cartoonist has been doing some image based on Hokusai’s famous ukiyo-e “Wave” prints, the Japanese flag, or the Wave AND the Japanese flag. So I wanted to do something different. At the same time, I was trying NOT to react to the idiocy I was seeing like CNN’s Larry David–I mean Larry KUDLOW–opining that we should be grateful that the human toll is worse than the economic toll (which I hope was just a stupid way of saying that it’s amazing that the economic toll isn’t as devastating as the human one), Rush Limbaugh’s asshole opinion that environmentalists would blame it on global warming and cheer that so many car manufacturers were hard hit by the disaster–seriously, that man needs to multiply up his oxycontin consumption so that he’s too opiated to foist his coprophagic bloviating on the world–and idiots on the web cheering that finally Japan was paid back for Pearl Harbor–an event which happened when most of them were probably not even born yet–as if being fought to an unconditional surrender 66 YEARS AGO and suffering the atomic devastation of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, not to mention the firebombing of Tokyo, didn’t cause enough civilian deaths to satisfy the bloodthirsty cretins. But I won’t mention my reaction to these.
Then I heard Kanno Yoko’s beautiful song. Kanno Yoko, or as she is more generally known in the west, Yoko Kanno, is a brilliant composer and is known mostly for her work in anime and movies, including Cowboy Bebop, the Ghost in the Shell television series, and a personal favorite, the undeservedly little known live action film, Kamikaze Girls. She wrote Kimi de ite in response to the disaster as a means of providing comfort and hope to her fellow Japanese and published it on YouTube without any accompanying video. I was able to read the touching lyrics on Jpopasia posted by utadafreak22, a young fan. Kanno-sama’s song soothed my own feelings about the aforementioned idiots and expressed everything I myself wanted to say about the sad situation.
I had two options. I could accompany the song with photos of the disaster. I felt that this might be too brutal, and I also thought that other people would take care of this option faster and better than I could. Or I could create a video that matched the tone of this song. That’s what I’ve tried to do here.
Please keep the people of Japan in your hearts and thoughts as this disaster continues to unfold. And please give to one of the above charities, or any of the others which are stepping in to help in this time of need.