Tokyo Record Style

Towa

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Nearly every day on my way home from work, I pass by Manhattan Records, a Tokyo institution of 30 years that mostly Hip-Hop, R&B, Soul, and House. After passing Ultra Shibuya, Hi-Fi Records, several Disk Unions, Tower Records, an HMV, Discland Jaro, Next Records, Mother’s Records, and a couple of Face Records, Manhattan Records is the last record shop on my way out of Shibuya on Inokashira Dori, the road that leads me all the way back home. By the time I’m rolling up on Manhattan, I’ve usually photographed a record collector or two on the way at one of […]

Tokyo Record Style

Hisashi (and Setsu)

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Hello Hisashi and little Setsu-chan, cute father/daughter combo who I met at Physical Store – Organic Music + Planet Baby in Shimo Igusa. These two were decked in full weekend regalia – I really loved Hisashi’s glasses which had flip-up shades that only covered ¾ of the frame when down which I don’t think I had ever seen before. And he had a killer colorful “Meet Beat” shirt on too with its illustrated music heads all over it. I also caught out of the corner of my eye that was rocking some understated black leather Jack Purcell “Black Tips” maybe, […]

Tokyo Record Style

Ayse and Gunter

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Hello, Ayse and Gunter from Cologne, Germany. Ayse is living in Tokyo and currently a student Musashino Art University, or Musabi, and Gunter is visiting her from their hometown. When I spotted them in Coconuts Disk shopping around the bins, the stack of records they were holding was getting bigger and bigger and I thought to myself, “Whoa! Look at that stack! These guys are ballers! Def gonna chase them outside for a Tokyo Record Style photo!” And then when I spied them checking out I followed them out. I chatted Ayse and Gunter just outside in Coconuts has a […]

Tokyo Record Style

Saqip

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With the pandemic having more-or-less ended, and travelers having postponed their Japan trips for a couple of years now , Tokyo is brimming with tourists. “Over-tourism” is a buzzword being floated around on TV and in conversations, which comes with a plethora of contradictions and complexities. On one hand, it’s great to see business booming, and restaurants and bars full, record stores too, but on the other hand, the streets and train stations are crowded with lost people standing in your way, and every once in a while, you yourself get slightly overwhelmed with a bit of that entitled New […]

Tokyo Record Style

Kerry and Yuki

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Meet lovely Kerry and (and Yuki) whom I caught up with on the streets of Shibuya for a friendly chat and some Tokyo Record Style. As is always the case, they were a little suspicious at first, just as I would be on the chaotic streets of Shibuya, but a genuine shared interest in music broke the ice and we got a off to smashing start. Kerry had just scored some records from Tower Records down the road. (Side note: In case you don’t know, a few months back Tower moved its giant ~7th-floor vinyl section in Shinjuku all over […]

Tokyo Record Style

Temuge

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They say Shibuya Scramble is the busiest intersection in the world. Is it true? Could be. Two things are for sure. 1.) It still manages to impress, no matter how many hundreds (or thousands) of times you’ve crossed it, and 2.) It’s where I spotted Temuge crossing in the sea of people with his pal, both with ice-pops on a Saturday Night. I chatted Temuge there on the corner in a mix of Japanese and English and I began to wonder if Japanese was both our second languages. I asked Temugu where he was from and I thought I heard […]

Tokyo Record Style

Sara and Tyler

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Slammed on the breaks on my way home from work, and made a hard left to catch these two standing in front of Tower Records, carrying that signature Yellow-red-orange bag. From quickly chatting Sarah and Tyler up from atop my bike, they gladly agreed to a photo, and told me they were cousins traveling together to Japan, from their home in Vancouver, on a trip they’d been planning for years, adding that after a few more days in Tokyo, they’d be heading to Kyoto to rendezvous with yet more family! Well, done team! From their vinyl Tower Records bag, they […]

Tokyo Record Style

Erika

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Needing a current photo of Hachiko (Japan’s famous faithful dog) for an upcoming project, I zipped down to Shibuya with my camera to snap the landmark statue. After I got the shot of the beloved pup, and with a little time to kill before an engagement at Mac Jacob’s “Bookmarc” where one of Tokyo’s most enigmatic street photographers and my dear photohomie, John Sypal (also of TokyoCameraStyle fame, read: this project’s inspiration) would be signing his sublime new book, Nebraska, I decided to stake out the intersection of… “Inokashira Street and Organ Slope.” Now, if the intersection of “Inokashira Street […]

Tokyo Record Style

Keiichiro Fukuzumi, Akitake Yamato, and Kosuke Awane

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I had 20 minutes to kill last weekend while waiting for my son’s backflip class (yes, backflip class) to end and spotted a record store on the map just a stone-throw away, one I had never been to before, called “OM Physical Store” (OM for Organic Music). DEEP in the backstreets of Shimoigusa, far off the beaten path, I did NOT expect to find such an extremely hip store, just recently opened last September by author of the holy grail guide, “Obscure Sound”, Mr. Chee Shimizu, known for compiling the comprehensive discography of some of the best rare records from […]

Tokyo Record Style

Anthony

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First Tower Records spotting, at Shibuya Crossing! I caught up with Anthony and his wife walking along after what looked like a nice little shopping spree! I initiated a conversation in Japanese, wrongly assuming Anthony was Japanese but when we looked at me a little sideways, not completely understanding, he pulled back his mask revealing a giant and friendly smile, me having been to the “Land of Smiles” instantly suspected Anthony might be… “Where are you from?” “Thailand!” Bingo. Anthony scored Bruno Mars’ XXIVK Magic and told me he was debating between this and one other record, but I’m failing […]