Saturday, May 03, 2008

Exploring the Connections Between Music and Peace

Article 9 Conferenc JPG

Global Article 9 Conference Workshop!

My dear friend Aska will be playing on Monday May 5th at the Global Article 9 Conference Workshop (details below). I will be there as one of audience.

After the concert, I will be speaking at Article 9 Cinema, which will be at Conference Room 302 on the 3rd floor of Makuhari Messe between the screening of What I've Learned about US Foreign Policy: War Against the 3rd World (screening will be starting at 2:40). Out of 10 documentaries from that movie, 3 will be shown on May 5.

Hope to see you all there!


Date/Time: Monday, May 5th (National Holiday) 12:20 – 13:50
Place: Makuhari Messe, Chiba (International Conference Hall 3F, Room 304)
Organizer: Peace Not War Japan (
Event URL (includes flyer):

Please join us for a live show featuring a lineup of several internationally acclaimed musicians. The artists will then be asked to share their views and personal experiences regarding the contribution of music as both a political and a spiritual tool toward the goal of encouraging peace, and to consider the role that music can play to help protect Japan's Constitutional Article 9. The discussion will be emceed by radio personality Peter Barakan, who has a deeply nuanced understanding of music and peace-related issues, as well as the convergence thereof.

Aska Kaneko (Multi-genre violinist and vocalist)
Ben Kemp & Uminari (Polynesian and Japanese acoustic fusion ensemble)
Likkle Mai & The K (Reggae vocalist/ guitarist)

Peter Barakan (broadcaster)

Fees for the Global Article 9 Conference to Abolish War:

May 4th (Plenary & Live Concert): ¥1500 (\1000 with advance purchase)
May 5th (Symposium & Workshops): same as above (Conference is free for junior high school students and younger.)

Advance tickets may be purchased at Lawson's convenience stores,
or by postal transfer (see for details in Japanese).

For more info and full conference schedule, see the official website:

Route to venue:
Map of venue:

Artist Profiles

Aska Kaneko
Born in Tokyo, Aska Kaneko began playing the violin at age four, and started to perform professionally while attending the Tokyo University of the Arts. She has played in countless numbers of music sessions spanning numerous genres, and has released a total of 17 albums. She continues to receive accolades for her outstanding technique, rich musical expression, and playfully elegant style. Aska's most recent album is Ave (2007), a multi-lingual collaboration where she explores themes of peace along with several international guest artists. She also regularly facilitates children's workshops, and produces music for use in energy work. Her personal pursuits include researching the Mayan calendar, bodywork such as yoga and Tai Chi, and organic cooking. She lives with her husband, who is from the U.S., and their fifth-grade, Hawaiian-born son. Website:

Ben Kemp & Uminari
Signed to independent Japanese label Suzuki Records, Ben Kemp & Uminari are creating a unique musical fusion as they forge new territory both musically and culturally. With their adventurous instrumentation that includes vocals, guitar, electric flute, cajón and fretless bass, the group features Ben's Polynesian-inspired ethereal voice and poetic lyrics, combined with Uminari's Japanese-inspired arrangements. The overall effect is a soulful, acoustic sound that is both soothing and haunting. The group has released three albums, and has toured twice in New Zealand, Australia and Japan. Website:

Likkle Mai & The K
Accomplished reggae vocalist Likkle Mai, who runs her own record label "MK MuziK", continues to bring audiences her strong message of peace and love. Her second album "MW" received praise from various music magazines following its release in 2007, and a 7-inch single track "My Woman/Home, Sweet Home was released in January 2008 from the same album. Likkle Mai is presently working on a collaboration project with several other artists, as well as her own third album. Website:

Peter Barakan (broadcaster)
Born in London, Peter Barakan has lived in Tokyo since 1974 and has worked in broadcasting since 1980. His work has placed particular emphasis on introducing a wide variety of music from different parts of the world to a public that is often force-fed only what is commercially convenient for large corporations. His present radio programs are the "Barakan Beat" show at online, which features a variety of world music; and "Weekend Sunshine," a weekly free form radio programme on NHK-FM. He also hosts the Japanese broadcast of the US news magazine show "60 Minutes" and the weekly talk show "Begin Japanology "for NHK World.


Daniela said...

Yumi-san, after reading your blog (which I found by chance yesterday while browsing the net), this morning at 6 AM I decided to attend the peace conference even though I had no tickets. Since I had to teach in the morning, I came in the afternoon, so around 2PM I was at Makuhari Messe hoping to get in and watch the movie: "What I've Learned about US Foreign Policy: War Against the 3rd World". However I could not get in because all the tickets were sold out! So I went back home and watched the conference on the live TV. Thanks to your blog, I could find out about this wonderful conference and also tell my friends about it. Keep up the good work.

Yumi Kikuchi said...

Daniela san

Wow! What a pity I could not see you there. THere are so many people and the tickets were sold out both days. I am sorry! I will be speaking in Tokyo and many other cities in Japan, so check out my schedule (which is in Japanese schedule page only) and If you have a friend who can read Japanese, I will send you my mail magazine. Let me know your e-mail.

Daniela said...

I replied to the above comment but it is not posted, so I guess you will receive it as a private e-mail.

Anyway, I also wanted to tell you that I found through your blog about Tokyo Peace Film Festival this year. I surely hope to watch the movies. The one "Inochi no tabekata" is especially interesting for me, since I stopped eating animal products because of concern for animals. Few people will agree or understand my motives, but I am happy when someone will feel the same way. I can't wait to watch it.

Yumi Kikuchi said...


I may have accidentally deleted your comment. If I did, feel free to post it again...