I follow the singer-songwriter ray for a while on Twitter, he is quite active and since a while he likes to write in English. ray’s solo project started in 2011 when he was still a singer of REIL. He released his first album Faith in 2011. Since he is a Focus Artist at Nyanko Scandal Factory he got more known. Reasons enough to talk with him about his music and plans.
AVO: Firstly, please introduce yourself.
ray: Hi! My name’s ray. I’m a solo artist; singer and songwriter.
I will say this just to you, but… I’m in fact a vampire. So take care if you dare to walk alone at night! (laughs)
AVO: Wow! That sounds really scary! (laughs) Secondly, please tell us when you first got in touch with music. Since when are you interested in it?
ray: The first time I got in touch with music was when I was a child. There was a piano in the house I was raised in when I was a child, so instead of playing with toys, I was always playing piano. So… “when I got interested in music?” To be honest I don’t know. Since I was a child the music was near me so it was something natural (obvious) for me. That’s why maybe God only knows when I got interested in this.
AVO: What is your concept as a solo artist?
ray: The meaning after my concept is (in a lot of ways) “liberation.” I think it’s obvious but people, apart from living, have to endure a lot of things like relationships, work, money, love, etc. But I think a lot of them endure all that to an extreme they don’t need to and end up keeping their emotions to themselves. In consequence, their hearts start getting lost… even though the answer is quite simple. So I started this solo project as to give a little of “liberation” to the people that need it.
AVO: What’s your greatest source of inspiration?
ray: I have a lot of sources of inspiration. I guess the first of them is going to museums. There are mainly paintings but every single one of them has a drama and history behind it, therefore they have a heart. So while I look at a painting I create a song in my head. I think I also take inspiration from dreams or when I go out for a walk.
AVO: Now think on the opposite side. If an overseas fan goes to Japan, which bar or restaurant will you recommend this person to go to?
ray: I would recommend Ginza’s “Vampire Cafe.” It’s a café and has also alcohol but what I like the most about that place is its good atmosphere. Also an izakaya. There are izakayas everywhere in Japan but I think they’re places in which you can have a lot of fun if you’re the type of person that likes alcohol.
AVO: What do you know about the Netherlands and Belgium? If one day you go to those countries, what would you like to do in there?
ray: In the Netherlands, I would like to go to all kind of museums and to walk around the canals! Ah, and I also want to visit the Dom Tower! ^^ I would love to eat waffles and chocolate in Belgium! I also want to go to the Rubens House. This is very common in both countries, but I would like to try the beer! (laughs)
AVO: Can you tell us about your favourite vampire movie?
ray: That’s a hard question… (thinks). Probably “Interview with the Vampire.”
AVO: Let’s go back to talk about music. Have you already decided what will be your next steps as a musician this year?
ray: It’s almost decided, though a lot of things are still secret (laughs)
AVO Blog: If you could play together with a band you like, which one will you choose?
ray: Probably Mr.Big, Eric Clapton, Aerosmith, VAMPS, Bon Jovi… If I have to give names I could go on forever. ^^;
AVO: Now, please think for a while about your wishes and expectations for this year. How about them in 5 years time? How do you want to see yourself as musician in 2020?
ray: Regardless of “Japan” or “overseas” I would like to be able to give lives freely. In 2020 I would like to hold the sponsorship event called “Hallowe’en Par†y” that I give every year in Japan.
AVO: To finish the interview, please send a message to our readers from the Netherlands and Belgium. Thank you so much for the interview!
ray: I wish to meet you all in a near future! So please support me from the Netherlands and Belgium. Let’s ROCK together!!
I want to thank ray for his time to answer the questions and my translator (who doesn’t want to hear thanks, but secretly I thank this person). Follow ray through his official website, blog, Twitter, Facebook and Youtube!