All About Japan

Catchy Summer Jam is an Ode to Osaka

Music Osaka Kansai

For many travellers, a trip to Japan just isn’t complete without visiting the city of Osaka, where you can feast on regional delicacies like takoyaki and okonomiyaki, and pick up unusual Japanese phrases unique to the regional dialect known as Kansai-ben.

While the area’s distinct culture draws huge numbers of visitors to the city every year, there’s set to be even more tourists arriving soon thanks to a catchy new hit song that’s become so popular it’s received over a million views online in just two weeks.

Called "Once In Your Life In Osaka (Osaka Bon)," the song has been created in conjunction with COOL JAPAN TV, which aims to promote the country’s “cool” culture to a worldwide audience. Featuring the three members of Thai band Room 39, along with some famous Japanese performers, the music video for the song showcases the best of Osaka with the help of some traditional summer bon odori dancing.

The video features famous sites like Tsutenkaku Tower and the Shinsekai district…

... and the lively Dotonbori area.

There’s also a good dose of Kansai-ben phrases like nandeyanen (“What the hell?”) sprinkled in among the lyrics too.

Japan’s DJ Koo makes an appearance in the video.

As does professional traditional Japanese dancer, choreographer and stage producer Ukon Takafuji, who choreographed the moves in the video. As the heir of the Takafuji clan, which has a lineage of traditional dancers stemming back over a century, Ukon has been working with DJs in recent years to help promote traditional dance in a modern world.

Also in the clip is self-titled “party creator” and event organiser Afromance, who is working with Cool Japan TV to produce an outdoor festival called Awa Fes at Osaka Castle on August 25 - 26, 2018. The two-day event will have a traditional Japanese summer festival and bon dance theme, featuring music, dancing and tons of foam, which will be shot out on partygoers from two huge canons.

The “Once In Your Life In Osaka” song will also be played live for revelers at the event. If you’d like to attend, details can be found at the official online site and tickets can be booked from Lawson convenience stores or online ticket sites like Ticket Pia for ¥4,500 (US$40.45) each.

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