• Interview – Big Willie’s Burlesque


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    “Big Willie” McNeil is a long-time friend of Fuji Rock, playing just about as along as the Palace of Wonder has existed, also inhabiting new stages like Cafe de Paris. You could say these places were built for him and his love of burlesque, one of the first forms of musical theater. We had the good fortune to catch up with Willie as he was packing up feather boas for the flight over.

    1. Tell me the truth Willie, do the burlesque girls look as good in the morning without the makeup?

    It’s amazing what make up, push up bra’s, dancers fishnet tights and heels can do. False advertising actually! But they do call it make up… One time I did a big show in Chicago with around 20 dancers and the next morning on the flight home when everyone was in their sweats and tennis shoes, I didn’t even recognize some of the dancers who I didn’t know well!

    2. What can we expect from you at Fuji this year?

    A special international show! I have two Cuban musicians, an Italian guitarist, my Argentinian dancer Carolina plus for the special ‘G&G Orchestra’ show Elvis and two background singers. We’ll play Cuban and American music.

    3. Any acts you looking forward to?
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  • What type of Fujirocker are you?


    Most bands opt for the T-shirt and jeans fashion at Fuji Rock

    Most bands opt for the T-shirt and jeans fashion at Fuji Rock

    Before you start packing your wheelie bag or Igloo cooler, first ask yourself “what type of Fujirocker do I wanna be”. Thinking long and hard about this will eliminate some of the ballast from your belongings and maximize your chance of hanging with like minded people. Here are some of the regular looks we see each year.

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  • 2017 Rookie winners Chai

    2018 Rookie Recommendations


    2017 Rookie winners Chai

    2017 Rookie winners Chai

    The Rookie Stage is always a mixed bag of acts veering between wishy-washy bedroom pop, punk guitar-throwing, schedule-be-damned antics or energetic kawaii-pop.  For those who play, the Rookie stage has sometimes opened up doors to wider success, and it’s this potential promise that keeps bands applying year on year for the chance to appear at the following year’s festival on a main stage.

    Here’s a brief selection of bands worth checking out, if only because they break the mold of floppy-haired boys playing guitar to their shoes.

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    Fujirockers Bar Taipei – Recap


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    It was a wild weekend of music and camaraderie as Fujirocker head honcho Koichi Hanufusa led a half-dozen of the J-crew for the short 3 hour flight across the pond to Taipei. The first night was a battle to topple 12-year old bottle of Nikka whisky and a chance to to dig through some records at host restaurant Alleycats. By 11pm, the conversation turned to Benny Goodman and the fifty plus swing dancers who did more prancing than swooning on this hot summer night. When the tents and banners arrived, it was time to tiptoe home, past patrolmen protecting the park, and back to the safe and spacious confines of Taipei Artist Village.
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    A Real Rock Star


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    Gon-chans ready to be released into the wild

    For almost everyone who arrives at Fuji Rock, one of the first unusual sights they may come across is a number of large boulders and rocks painted in bright primary colours, sporting expressions that seem quizzical, melancholy, surprised or thoughtful, among a range of other emotions you could project on to them. Scattered throughout the Fuji Rock festival site, the stony brood of Gon-chans, as they are known, have long been a fixture of the fest. Their creator, Gordon (Robert Gordon McHarg III), is a London-based artist who has worked closely with the festival for over a decade as well as the Joe Strummer Foundation and many more projects.

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    Curated Day: Long-Haul Friday


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    Only a couple weeks until the start of Fuji Rock, and if you’re like me, you’ve started trying to pencil in all your “must-see’s” in the overwhelming stage schedule. For me, the 2017 Fuji Rock outing has a particularly high number of “must-see’s”, none more than opening day. Previously, James laid out a very tempting and relaxing plan for us on the first day of the festival, but I’m going to put my money on using all my energy at the start, no matter how high the risk of spending Saturday and Sunday with tired legs might be.

    If you’re up for running back and forth between each of the far corners of the festival grounds from morning to night, Friday is the day to do it. Riding high on the initial energy you’ll have at the start of the festival, put your walking shoes on because here’s one way to catch a great range of variety on opening day:

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    Freedom Friday at Fuji


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    Don’t know where to start to plan your day at the behemoth that is Fuji Rock? Let us do the work for you with our curate your day series. This (hopefully) series of articles from your friendly Fuji Rockers team will take the work out of planning your day at Japan’s biggest music festival.
    Let us lead you on a themed journey throughout the day. Last year I planned a day called Jimi’s Jazzy Sunday. This year I bring you Freedom Friday at Fuji! READ MORE

  • Shinichi Osawa's Mondo Grosso is one of the projects making a comeback at Fuji Rock 2017

    Throwback Fuji: A History Lesson Of Notable Acts Making A Return At This Year’s Festival


    Shinichi Osawa's Mondo Grosso is one of the projects making a comeback at Fuji Rock 2017

    Shinichi Osawa’s Mondo Grosso is one of the projects making a comeback at Fuji Rock 2017

    Yeah yeah, exciting new bands and genre-bending electronic acts, plenty of that at Naeba…sometimes, you <em>want</em> a throwback to a different time, and Fuji Rock Festival 2017 has a wide variety of performers who have been honing their craft over the last few decades. This year’s line-up, in particular, offers up a convenient timeline of Japanese music, featuring influential acts from the 1960s and breakthrough producers from the Aughts on the bill. It’s not quite a comprehensive history of Japanese music, but here are five acts from five different decades worth checking out in a few weeks.

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  • Festival Goods: The Practical, the Weird and the Wonderful


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    As with any holiday, are you pestered to bring back souvenirs from Fuji Rock? Do you have family waiting at home or colleagues covering you while you party the Friday and weekend away at the festival? Well, the official Fuji Rock store has you covered with a variety of goods that range from the practical to the downright weird. We’ve taken a quick dive into the store and picked our highlights below.

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  • That's no good!

    Fujirocker’s Seven Tips for Extreme Festival Fashion


    We all know what we’re supposed to wear! But will your breathable waterproof hiking wear inspire naughty looks from appealing strangers? Will your neck towel help you stand out in a crowd of 40,000? Will that sensible all-weather hat get you onto other people’s Instagrams with the hashtag #onlyatfujirock?

    There is no problem if you bring sunscreen and sturdy shoes, but remember that Fujirock is a party! So we put together this lookbook of Fuji Rock’s best dressed, and it was just as easy as perusing the people photos in the “More Fun” section of last year’s FujirockExpress.com. So get ready, this goes way beyond band t-shirts. Below we’ve selected seven of the top looks / bits of advice so you too can join Fuji Rock’s best dressed.

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