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Asa-Chang & Junray

Asa-Chang & Junray

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Asa Chang & Junray is the band of the Japanese percussionist Asa Chang, who was the founder and original bandmaster of Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra
Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra
, commonly abbreviated by fans as Skapara or TSPO, is a Japanese ska and jazz band officially formed in 1988 by the percussionist Asa-Chang, and initially composed of over 10 veterans of Tokyo's underground scene...

. After leaving that group in 1993, he formed Asa Chang & Junray in 1998 with programmer and guitarist Hidehiko Urayama. They were joined in 2000 by tabla
Tabla
The tabla is a popular Indian percussion instrument used in Hindustani classical music and in popular and devotional music of the Indian subcontinent. The instrument consists of a pair of hand drums of contrasting sizes and timbres...

 player U-zhaan. Live, the group use a portable soundsystem called 'Jun-Ray Tronics', hence the name — although the word 'junray' also means 'pilgrimage'.

In 2002, the British label The Leaf Label
The Leaf Label
The Leaf Label is an independent record label based in Yorkshire, United Kingdom. Initially known as an electronic music label, releasing mainly instrumental music, the company's approach has broadened over the last few years and now features an eclectic range of artists, with a focus on strong...

 released Jun Ray Song Chang, which compiled the group's first two, Japan-only albums. It was followed a year later by the mini album, Tsu Gi Ne Pu. The group's song 'Hana' was featured on Fabric Live 07
Fabric Live 07
FabricLive.07 is a DJ mix compilation album by John Peel, as part of the FabricLive Mix Series.-Track listing:# Asa-Chang & Junray - Hana - The Leaf Label Ltd# The Soledad Brothers - Break 'em On Down - Estrus Records...

, while 'Tsu Gi Ne Pu' was included on a The Wire Tapper
The Wire Tapper
The Wire Tapper is a long running series of CD compilations issued with editions of The Wire Magazine. The compilation is not always released with newsagent copies of the magazine; subscribers receive the compilation on a much more frequent basis....

 CD. The group's 2005 album, Minna no Junray, featured vocals by singer and actress Kyōko Koizumi
Kyoko Koizumi
' is a Japanese singer and actress. Her music is released through Victor Entertainment . She is also known by the nickname Kyon Kyon. She had singles reach the Top ten for 12 consecutive years between 1983 and 1994, a female solo artist record, until this was broken by Namie Amuro...

. It has not been released overseas.

Albums

  • Kage No Nai Hito, 2009
  • Minna no Junray, 2005
  • Tsu Gi Ne Pu, Leaf Label 2003 (BBC review)
  • Jun Ray Song Chang, Leaf Label 2002 (BBC review)
  • Hana, 2001 (Japan only)
  • Tabla Magma Bongo, 1998 (Japan only)

External links