Jet Set Records in Shimokitazawa (and their original shop in Kyoto) has to have the coolest of all the record store bags. It riffs on the classic PanAm logo and it has a cool two-tone opacity so you can see the records through the logo. It always catches my eye as it did when I was driving down Ichiban-gai, the streets where it’s located, and spotted a handsome young lad with two equally sharp escorts I’d soon find out were his parents. This has become a rather common occurrence, spotting young adults on family holidays who have dragged their parents, no doubt, somewhat against their will, to hip and trendy Shimokitazawa for all the record stores, vintage clothing, cool bars and restaurants the neighborhood has to offer.

Naturally suspicious of a disheveled bearded foreigner on a loud and rusty motorcycle, they listen to my initial pitch with some caution, and quickly realize, I hope, that I was friendly enough, and shared with me that they were in Japan on Holiday from Kuwait! WHOA! It’s not every day you meet Kuwaitis! I was thrilled to chat them up, and recently-graduated-from-high-school Saleh shared with me that he’s a piano player as well as a trumpet player and has played in a couple of bands. I noticed some proud smiles on Mom on Dad when he explained that he was headed to the States for college to study International Business with the dream of having “several” businesses in the future! Go, Saleh!

Saleh scored some killer records from JetSet including among others, Eiichi Ohtaki’s seminal classic Each Time its Special 40th-Anniversary Edition! One record he scored has yet to be logged to Discogs (for which both he and JetSet get bonus points!)

Great meeting you Saleh, (and Mom and Dad!) See you on your next visit to Japan, and until then, good luck in Florida, Kuwait, and at the next record store!

More Tokyo Record Style on the way!

Eiichi Ohtaki – Each Time (40th Anniversary Edition)
Label: Niagara Records – SRJL 1155~6
Format: Vinyl, LP, Clear Green Vinyl, Vinyl, 7″, 45 RPM, Ivory Vinyl
All Media, Album, Limited Edition, Reissue, Stereo
Country: Japan
Released: Mar 21, 2024
Genre: Rock, Pop
Style: City Pop, Pop Rock, Soft Rock, Kayōkyoku

NIM (ニム) – Mushy
Format: 10” single record
Country: Japan
Released: February 21, 2024
Genre: Electronic
Style: Darkwave, Electro, Minimal

Harumi Ohzora [大空はるみ] – Viva
Label: Universal Music – UPJY9237
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album, Limited Edition, Reissue
Country: Japan
Released: Oct 26, 2022
Genre: Electronic, Latin, Pop
Style: Salsa, Synth-pop, Rumba, Mambo

Yamazaki Masayoshi – One More Time, One More Chance
Label: Urban Discos – URDC88
Format: 12″ Single
Country: Japan
Released: December 12, 2023
Style: Japanese Pop, Pop, Rock

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