ReN

Tokyo

Wednesday 22nd May 2019

Name, where are you from?
ReN, Tokyo.

What do you do?
Singer-songwriter.

What’s the best gig you’ve ever been to?
Ed Sheeran. I saw him twice in 2014, at BIG CAT in Osaka and at Studio Coast in Tokyo. Both gigs have always given me the vitality to carry on. It was surreal watching him perform literally 3 meters away. The sound was so powerful considering his minimal setup. I had a realization about the human potential outside the realm of sound pressure and the range of outputs from this performance.

Which subcultures have influenced you?
It has to be fashion. I tried to fulfil my childhood dream in motorsports when I lived in Sheffield for a year, however, I stumbled into fashion through racing while I was competing with my peers. The actual styles of the British youth, something that I had never come across while in Japan.

Of all the venues you’ve played, which is your favourite?
That would be the Akasaka Blitz, my final gig of 2018. When I look back at the more challenging gigs I’ve done, that or when I played as a guest for ONE OK ROCK at Marine Messe Fukuoka 2 years ago. The size of the stadium and because it was an away game with a different crowd made it rather memorable.

If you could be on the line up with any two bands in history?
There are too many to list actually. I would rather go in the studio to produce a record with Coldplay. I’m interested in their creative mind.

If you could spend an hour with anyone from history?
Freddie Mercury. One hour sounds like just the right length of time to have a conversation with him frankly (laughs).

Your greatest unsung hero or heroine in music?
Ben Howard. He must be well known in the UK since he's had a career for around ten years as a singer-songwriter, though I feel that he ought to be more popular in Japan. His wet, soaking acoustic sounds glow from inside and combined with his peculiar melodies and guitar phrases are addictive. I’m also getting into Declan McKenna.

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