Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Japanese Pop and MMA Fighters

We all know that the world is kinda awesome. Capturing that awesome, however, is something different entirely. I'm talking about the art of a 'travel video' and representing a place or an experience through images and sound.

Chances are, you don't work on Discovery or the Travel Channel, so making a travel video that's entertaining and inspiring isn't usually on the top of your to-do list in another country (and if you do work for Discovery...I'm looking for a job!). The majority of stuff I see when I'm browsing the interwebs is mom or dad taping their kid at the beach or a very matter-of-fact guy explaining years of history to me in the course of three minutes while walking down the street in Rome or Paris or something.

I like watching this stuff, but most of the time it isn't anything worth emailing to your friends. It doesn't stir any emotion for me or tell a story. It's a cool place, yeah, but I'm not moved by the place alone. It's the people or the purpose of being there that really brings me in. If you're looking for something with a very set story and purpose, watch Anthony Bourdain or anything the Travel Channel has to offer.

Amateur guys, however, are out there all the time trying to create something and stand out above the mom and dad stories. Videos like Where the Hell Is Matt? are not only quirky and goofy, but really stir an emotional response in uniting the world under the one thing that we all have in common: we're human.

Last night my dad shared this video with me that was in the same vein as Where the Hell Is Matt, and I found it share-worthy for all you guys:
This video requires some backstory. The guy who wrote, choreographed, and is the lead singer of this group is a Japanese guy by the name of Genki Sudo. He's a retired mixed martial arts fighter from Japan who's known for two things: his crazy entrance songs and being universally loved. His motto We Are All One echoes like a hymn of peace through the MMA community. Not only is he a practicing Buddhist, but after his MMA career and working with the group "World Order" (the J-pop group in the video), he went on to complete his graduate school studies. Guys: this is what every man should strive to be.

Ladies: he's also a poet. Check out these translated lyrics for the song in the video:

We have opened the veil of the world and heard two voices
One is the soothing beautiful lie and the other the distorted truth that fills the hollows
What is right and what is wrong
Truth is always the paradox
One era has gone by and I awake in sleep
The rhythm of the universe the rhythm of your love
Dreaming cycle Beautiful Venus
The rhythm of the universe the rhythm of your love
Now in this moment I 'dance'
World Order

In terms of a 'travel video', this is one of the coolest ideas I've seen in a long time. Here you have this man and his group with a wonderful message performing in the great cities of the world (he does this dance in other cities around the globe). He presents it genuinely through dance and song, much like all his entrances in his MMA career. It's quirky and fun, and naturally a community has built around him because of it. 

Now I know how insane I sound...trying to find the best of humanity in a J-pop music video. But before you dismiss me as crazy and turn off my man Genki Sudo's video, just watch with an open mind and heart. Think about the lyrics and the scope of human creativity that inspired such original moves. We really are all one...and sometimes we need to be fearless in sharing ourselves with one another.

Plus Genki Sudo has some moves. You cannot deny that.

1 comment:

  1. Dude, never doubt MMA fighters. They are some of the smartest, sexiest, coolest people I know.