Issue 01 of #ReverseNostalgia Japanese subculture reportage is dedicated to:
The entertainment team called @MANEATER_Tokyo Bikini Party Girls.
It was late July, just a few days before the beginning of another hot August in Japan. I run into @NuMoney85 Instagram profile and found out she was the manager of Thursday nights’ nightlife at Club Muse in Roppongi, a very exclusive and fashionable district of Tokyo. We got in touch and decided to meet there for a quick interview and to experience the “Maneater” once. I was really looking forward to discover more about Japanese subcultures, or at least find people thinking out of the box: I was lucky enough, because she was born in Kyoto but lived in Las Vegas for a while, then worked in London and Singapore, so she had the best profile to speak english, being open-minded and stylish enough to share her thoughts with an international magazine.
I reached Nishi-Azabu crossing and found pretty easily this peculiar underground Club in the late evening. A few rules: the entry is forbidden to <24, there’s a strict dress code (also no men on the army admitted), you must present a valid ID and business card to get in and last but not least the entrance fee (for men) is approx. 3500 Yen. I got in and suddenly met Manami – this is the real name of the former model and founder of the Maneater itself -: she showed me the interiors of the subterranean with caves and ravines, animalier swings, a well stocked bar and some illustration framed on the walls, in addition to mirrors, tables and a dancefloor supervised by a DJ whom was already spinning some music.
BIKINI PARTY GIRLS
We shared a drink or two and started talking about Maneater, the group of models and girls coming from different cities of Japan to “have fun and make some money”. Yu-Ko, $erena, Coco, Dian… Fictitious names for real sexy ladies together since 2007 in the Japanese entertainment business. But what’s this business like and what do they really do, all dressed in bikinis and lingerie leaving little to imagination? Pretty simple: the girls dance, have fun, strut their stuff on the bar and talk with the clients, group of folks reunited to celebrate something like a birthday, a job advancement or whatever, and lonely men maybe just in need to share some good relaxed spare times with a beautiful model, dancer, confidant. And the girls are pretty, oh: so pretty. And they dance, oh: they dance!
I see 1000 Yen bills folded and tucked in their bras, and decide to ask Manami something more about it: she tells me those are “tips”, and as a matter of a fact, they are very happy to receive some baksheesh for their time spent with each client. Of course, she tells precisely, there’s no sex involved, absolutely. First of all they are dancers, and you can have a proof of that waiting for a little coral show they put on at around midnight. So, if a client wants to tip for that, or for the lucky chance to have a beautiful girl aside, no problem no harm. This can be a side-job for them, and Maneater doesn’t only mean nightclubbing, but is also a collective working in the promotion of events, summer beach festivals, shows and much more.
There’s a privée in the basement, but I had no access to it. What I saw is that if a table orders a bottle of Champagne (or similar) gets a special little introduction by three or four girls, coming all the way around the dancefloor dancing and moving with feline movements to bring the bottle in the ice bucket from which stands out a tiny firework to add some sparkle to the already twinkling moment. Of course I had no chance to take pics to any of the clients, but what I was able to do is a little reportage documenting the beginning of the Maneater night, with some girls giving their best in front of the camera, playing with each other, sharing some sake-gel love shots and most of all having great fun together, the real meaning of Maneater.
Issue 02 of #ReverseNostalgia Japanese subculture reportage is dedicated to:
The Somecity Tokyo BALLAHOLIC Streetball Basketball team.
3×3. Alley-oop. And-one. Ankle-breaker. Assist. Athlete. Backdoor. Ball. Ballaholic. Bank shot. Basket. Basketball. Bench. Big man. Blindside screen. Block. Board. Buzzer beater. Circus shot. Crossover. Crowd. Defense. Dime. DJ. Dribble. Dunk. Eurostep. Fadeaway. Finger roll. Floater. Free throw. Hook shot. Hoop. In-n-Out. Jump shot. Layup. Local hero. MC. Motion offence. Music. Overtime. Pass. Pick-and-roll. Players. Post up. Pump fake. Rainbow. Rebound. Referee. Skywalk. Streetball. Tap in. Team. Trey. Turnover. V-cut. VIDEO.
ALL DAY. EVERYDAY. EVERYWHERE. ANYWHERE.
Somecity Ballaholic Streetball Basketball is a bit of everything. The official motto is: All day. Everyday. Everywhere. Anywhere. It’s just a hint to help you understand how deep and passionate is the love for the Game by the skilled Japanese guys playing in the so called “Ballaholic” tournament. I met Keita Suzuki, one of the founders of the whole thing, in Tokyo. It was late July and the tense pre-game of an important #7 Neighborhood Classic 3×3 match at Club Città in Kawasaki. I didn’t know what to expect, I only had a few information browsed on the all-Nipponese website Somecity.tv and exchanged a couple of e-mails with him. I reached the club hours before the game started and people were already forming a long queue in front of the location: the game was sold-out. At the entrance I spotted a huge table full of official merchandise, a feast for your eye: full of colors, hoop-related stuff and Bhllc official gadgets.
Somecity started back in 2007 when Streetball Basketball lovers decided to create a tournament and put it inside discos or clubs to bypass the shortage of structures and funds. They convinced international sport brand Champion to help them and decided to use the basic 3×3 rules with a twist: each game is played by two teams, the presence of a bench full of reserves is allowed and there’s a coach directing the orchestra. Music: yes. There’s a couple of DJs playing mostly hip-hop music (and popular radio hits), a couple of MCs to introduce players and comment with style and enthusiasm each shot on the field, a rich and loud audience (from kids to teenagers, women and men, parents and fans: everyone wearing or waving the colors of the supported team), big screens showing videos, trailers, visuals and a lot of action. The tournament goes on in Aomori, Niigata, Kanazawa, Nagoya, Shiga, Okayama, Shigane whilst the League is contested with the imperative “Play hard defense, unlock your skills” in Tokyo, Osaka, Sendai, Nagano. The teams fighting for a place in the playoffs (right, there’s a whole calendar for the season, like in the pros, with a regular season, playoffs – plus a terrific All-star game – and, of course, the Finals) here in Tokyo have funky names and clear ideas on how to rock the court: F’squad, KidRoc, Underdog, Tokyo Beast, Bay Crown Simon, Tsutomu Showtime, Hiratsuka Connections and 44Street.
The game is tough. The guys are skilled. And respectful. They shake hands, they help each other to stand up from the floor after a deadly foul, they hug before and after the match. Mostly, they are here to celebrate Streetball Basketball, even if it’s not played in the streets. They play to win, but most important they play to have fun. They play for themselves, but also they play for their fans. Some of them are tall, some really fit, others are “shorter” or “larger” but every each one of them got a place in the field, and knows how to give the team his best to succeed. Unlike the American Streetball you have in mind, they don’t play to prevail, but to unveil: to help the Streetball Basketball movement grow in Japan where, as a matter of a fact, it’s in a newborn stage. But if this is the kind of attitude and values Somecity is promoting through its games, websites, social networks, clothing lines and apparel, I think it fully respects and fulfills James Naismith (basketball inventor) words: “Be strong in body, clean in mind, lofty in ideals.” And I pay all my respect to that.
That’s how you give everybody a chance. That’s how you build a local hero and children can be inspired. So tell me now: Who got game?
Issue 03 of #ReverseNostalgia Japanese subculture reportage is dedicated to:
The City of Tokyo.
Issue 04 of #ReverseNostalgia Japanese subculture reportage is dedicated to:
FUKUOKA’s Hakata Gion Yamakasa Matsuri.
Issue 05 of #ReverseNostalgia Japanese subculture reportage is dedicated to:
FKA Twigs live @FUJI ROCK FESTIVAL 2015.
Issue 06 of #ReverseNostalgia Japanese subculture reportage is dedicated to:
Of Monsters and men live @FUJI ROCK FESTIVAL 2015.
Issue 07 of #ReverseNostalgia Japanese subculture reportage is dedicated to:
Foo Fighters live @FUJI ROCK FESTIVAL 2015.
Check the publication with all pictures up above and stay tuned for Issue 08!
Wanderlust [won-der-luhst]: “A strong, innate desire to travel”
As Vladimir Nabokov alluded to in his first novel Mary (1926), Wanderlust is some kind of “Nostalgia in Reverse: the longing for yet another strange land”.
Reykjavik Boulevard’s founder, Italian photographer Niccolo’ Scelfo is familiar with this Reverse Nostalgia awesome feeling and decided to start a new project from it.
WHAT IS REYKJAVIK BOULEVARD?
The “Boulevard” is an ideal border-breaking route, starting from Iceland (perfect bridge between Europe & America where the project was founded in 2012) linking different countries, enhancing cultural differences and promoting the friendship between free-spirits and art lovers, travelers and passionate curious folks.
It’s a place where details have a huge importance, smiles are the best accessories and style is something you can’t forget.
We marked through the years a path leading to the discovery of emerging talents, inspiring stories and underground realities.
Our Creative Studio focused on exclusive features such as interviews, reviews, shootings and travel experiences, ended up in visually striking Digital Magazines and in a Printed Book called “Creative Guide for Curious People“ distributed worldwide.
WHAT IS REVERSE NOSTALGIA PROJECT?
It’s time to introduce Japan to our heterogeneous audience, encouraging them to realize their dreams being open to new cultures and unknown places, traveling with joy and respect to meet beautiful strangers and smiling soul mates.
Reverse Nostalgia travel & lifestyle project starts here: an awesome adventure living in a constant journey through Japan’s main attractions and mysterious dark sides, traditional events and acclaimed music festivals, museums and art galleries, hospitality and fashion industry.
And much more: because a trip to the other side of the world is a huge source of inspiration, especially when you don’t book a return ticket.
Write us to join and support: firstname.lastname@example.org
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