Interview with Yoko Hamasaki
An exploration of the creative ideas and decisions behind Yoko Hamasaki's "Film noir ultime" and "BLIND LOVE".
Early last month, URBANGARDE's lead vocalist Yoko Hamasaki dropped not one but two solo releases, the first being a remastered version of her first album Film noir (2010), now titled Film noir ultime, and the second being her third album, BLIND LOVE. In an interview with the sensual J-pop singer, JaME explores some of the creative ideas and decisions behind both albums.
How have you personally grown as an artist in the time leading up to your third album Blind Love?
Hamasaki: I feel that I’ve grown in different ways. My approach to writing lyrics has changed dramatically compared to before, and I’m more willing to put my true feelings into words, even when I’m feeling the most vulnerable.
What prompted you to remaster your first album film noir into film noir ultime?
Hamasaki: film noir is still an important part of my personal history, but as I was preparing BLIND LOVE, I wanted to take the opportunity to bring my past work into a clearer presentation. When you listen to the album now, it fits together better with my current style of production.
How was it like working with producer Toshiki Kadomatsu?
Hamasaki: My mother was originally a fan of Mr. Kadomatsu, and when I was younger, I grew up listening to his music, so I was very happy for the chance to collaborate with him. Mr. Kadomatsu is a great musician and vocalist, and working with him gave me a new awareness of my own musical range. It was like seeing a song that I created wearing clothes I’d never imagined, and seeming so beautiful at once!
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