Tuesday, May 20, 2008

My Meeting With A Japanese Producer

Yesterday I went out on a shooting expedition with my new friend Katherine. Shooting as in with the camera. I'm sure you knew that. Kat's way cool. I met her at a photography show Suwanee was doing at Foster Library a while back and as it turns out she said she was a "blog stalker" of mine. She treated me like some kind of celebrity which was a very new and strange feeling for me... I'm so NOT. I am very flattered by this, but I mean come on ... let's keep it in perspective. So we exchanged emails and a while later when I got in touch with her we didn't make plans right away, and then Craig & I ran into Kat and her hubby at the PX and liked them a whole bunch and then I called her to make plans.

So yesterday we bummed around American Village with our cameras for the morning. We played with light and metering and a couple of lenses and apertures and stuff. As we wandered by the Okinawa Beach Hotel, we were taking pictures of the shells, flowers, and anatomically correct shiisa (I will spare you that image), and an older Japanese gentleman was helping a couple of people into a white BMW SUV. He was wearing a suit, and as we walked by he asked Kat where she was from. We like being friendly, so since we both moved here after having lived in San Diego, we said, "San Diego."

"Oh! Go Padres!"
"Haha, right! How about you, sir? Where are you from?"
"I'm from Japan, from Tokyo," he answered in perfect English with an accent. He commented on our nice cameras, and asked if we were photographers, and Katherine said, "SHE is!" and I shot her the quick "oh gimme a break, stop it" look.

"Are you in Okinawa on vacation?"
"Yes, vacation and work."
"Ah, what do you do?"
"I am a producer - of music. I have a studio here, and several on mainland."
"Oh - what kind of music?"
"Hip-hop - Japanese artists. Right now a record I produced has the #1 hip-hop single in Japan. over 6 million downloads."

Ok. Wow. So you're filthy rich. No, we didn't say that.

"Wow! Congratulations, that's fantastic!" I held up my camera and asked him if I could take his picture.

"Oh sure! Here..." and he leaned over and opened the back seat door of the SUV and helped out 2 pretty young women. "These are my massage therapists, I bring them with me when I travel."

AAhhhhhhh yes.... your personal "massage therapists" that you bring WITH you when you travel. Nice.

The girls smiled and made motions with their hands like they were giving a massage. They're good.

They stepped out of the car and posed for a couple of shots with the man they accompanied here. I showed them the pictures on the back of the camera and they were all quite tickled.

"Do you have a business card? I can email you the photos if you like."
He smiled and said, "Yes, sure!" and handed me his card. I'm not giving up his name in case he has some folks scouring the net for information about him, but let's just say I got home and Googled him and he is most definitely a major record producer. Since the mid-70's. And his email has the year 1941 in it so that puts him at 67 years old. He was one of the coolest guys I've met and I would happily party with him.

As we walked away, Kat and I joked that maybe after sending him the photos I took maybe he'd hire me to take pictures of some hip-hop artist for an album cover or something. I guess that would make me "huge in Japan" in yet another whole new way.

Hajimemashite, Shoro-San!


Edith said...

that is the coolest living in japan story ever...aside from the sperm pork...i mean SUPER m... :)

MAS said...

Sing along. BIG IN JAPAN.

Big in Japan

Katherine said...

Aviva... did we even finish any of our conversations this time? SO much to talk about so many random things to take pictures of. I love going out shooting with you! You're so fun to be with and a great teacher.
Thank you for the day's adventure!
Go Padres! ;)

E said...

how cool.. great shot.

Ernie Santa Ana said...

I just bought a dbx 1231 31-band graphic 2 channel equalizer for my recording studio. Too bad I can't lug that around (and my other gear) whenever I visit Okinawa. "Hi Mr. Producer-dude. May I attenuate your sub-harmonic frequencies?" That's just not as cool as snapping a shot of "Merv & Company." I'm just jealous...I could use a shoulder rub right now. Whoa is me.

Angie said...

LOL!! I love your spirit! Better give up the name - I'm super curious!

Also - thank you so much for a great season of soccer. You really made the team a lot of fun (I'll keep my fingers crossed our kids are on the same team next year)!