Real Talk w/ ShingO2

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Does Japan celebrate Earth Day?

Yes it does, in recent years many organizations have held festivals to talk about environmental issues.
I've helped out on a couple of shows in Tokyo, and this year I was in Miyazaki to talk about the radiation issue.

How did you first become involved in political and social issues?

It was a natural progression for me, living in the Bay Area.A big turning point was when I worked with composer Ryuichi Sakamoto to talk about the Rokkasho nuclear fuel reprocessing plant in Aomori, Japan. I couldn't imagine that a nuclear disaster would happen five years later, but there still are a lot of issues such as waste reprocessing and disposal.

How have the concerns of Japan changed since the Tsunami?
I think it has changed dramatically. It might take years for the government to adjust systematically, but the fact that zero nuclear power plants are in operation as of today attests to that shift in public consciousness.

What are some environmental causes that you hold closest to heart?
I think that all issues are connected, which is the most critical point. If we pollute the air, water, and land, it's all going to come back to us or to future generations.Basically we pay for by our health and bills.

I think many people out there have given up on the local government or have a lack of awareness. How important do you think it is for people to “pay attention” to what the local government is doing and how it operates?

Obviously it is really important to educate each other, not just government officials, to learn from our mistakes and improve on the way we live. Everything has a cost, nothing is clean. I wrote a paper on how fabricating computer chips leads directly to global warming in college, I understand that using laptops and cell phones are never going to be friendly to the earth, even after we're done using them.

Talk about your relationship with Nujabes and the importance of keeping his legacy and memory alive?

We had a good artistic relationship, so I think that it's important I keep his legacy alive through our songs. I never really get tired of performing his songs, although I like to progress and experiment with my personal career. Currently we have luv(sic) part5 and part6 that are in the mixing process, both unreleased works by Nujabes.


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