Back in high school (e.g., almost 20 years ago), it was very difficult to get access to Japanese music in the Philippines. I learned how to download music through mIRC and waited an entire night to download just 1 to 2 songs. But I was patient. In a year, I got to know JPOP artists I admire and listen to until today. Some of my favorite artists from then are Chemistry, Mr. Children, Utada Hikaru (of course), Southern All Stars, Dragon Ash, L’arc~en~Ciel, and others.
As time went by, content was more easily accessible through the internet – there was P2P sharing like Limewire, and then Torrents. To be honest, these aren’t what you would consider legal means of getting music, but you didn’t really have much of a choice if you lived outside of Japan. I even used to scour anime conventions for used JPOP CDs. Things are different now with online music stores like iTunes and Google Music, and the game-changing music software called Spotify! I can now legally stream Japanese music on my phone and take it with me anywhere.
Right now, there isn’t really that many JPOP playlists on Spotify yet, so I decided to create one. It’s got over 5,000 songs in it, from artists old and new. Unfortunately, not all of the artists I like are available, but I am still praying that eventually they’ll also make their music available for international fans through this medium.
If you are a fan of JPOP, or if you want to try listening to Japanese music – please try listening to my playlist – JPOPが好き (I like JPOP)! Put it on shuffle so that there’s a surprise factor in terms of which artist, what genre will play next. I will keep adding songs to this playlist as they come. If you have any artists I didn’t get to include, let me know as well! Happy listening!