Legendary rock band X Japan wrapped up its five-stop tour of South East Asia last month with shows in Seoul, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Taipei, and Bangkok, which drew some 50,000 fans, many of whom had waited their entire lives to see X Japan live in concert.
As much of a long-awaited, rock’n’roll celebration that these shows were, the members of X Japan were well aware of the devastating floods that had been assaulting Thailand. In fact, stories found their way to the band about die-hard fans who actually had to swim through the flooded streets of Bangkok and the surrounding affected areas in order to get to the concert.
Consequently, the day before X Japan’s Bangkok show, the band allied with the BEC-Tero Care and contributed a cash donation via Thailand’s local Channel 3 News’ Family for Flood Relief to help the tens of thousands of people affected by what has been called the worst flooding there in 50 years. Immediately upon arrival in Bangkok, band leader/drummer/keyboardist Yoshiki headed straight to Thailand’s Channel 3 where he donated two framed, signed drum skins from his own drum set to be auctioned off, with proceeds earmarked for the flood relief.
Later, at a press conference where he was joined by the other members of X Japan, Yoshiki commented, “As a band and as citizens of Japan, we have had difficulties to overcome, but we know how important it is to keep moving forward. The show must go on.”
In addition, X Japan band members Toshi, Pata, Heath and Sugizo have since donated personal items for the auction, with each item mounted onto a plaque for protection and display. The auction items include a beautiful paisley shirt from Pata’s own wardrobe that comes with a photo of him wearing the shirt onstage, a pair of Heath’s sunglasses with a photo of Heath wearing them, one of Sugizo’s custom-made, long-sleeve cotton T-shirts, the traditional Thai costume that Yoshiki wore at the band’s Bangkok concert, again with a photo of Yoshiki wearing the costume at that show, and a selection of autographed items from Toshi. The auction will be open for bids on eBay for ten days beginning at midnight PST on Monday, December 12, 2011. For more information or to place a bid, log onto www.bectero.com/xjapan2011 or www.facebook.com/bectero .
X Japan’s South East Asian dates were filled with loud, intense rock’n’roll, and seas of people doing the ‘X Jump.” And the audience had every reason to have a great time as the band performed everyone’s favorites – “Rusty Nail,” “Kurenai,” “I.V.,” “Endless Rain,” and “X” among others, as well as the band’s latest hit, “Jade.” For every encore, the band had a little surprise – Yoshiki appeared onstage wearing a traditional costume dedicated to that particular territory. For the encore in Seoul, he wore the Chima Jeogori, the Korean traditional dress for women; in Shanghai Yoshiki wore a red China Dress, and in Hong Kong, a white China Dress. At the show in Taipei, he came on stage wearing a red kimono, but had a nurse’s costume underneath, and for the tour’s final night’s Bangkok concert, he wore the traditional Choot Thai.
Perhaps one of the most powerful moments came in Bangkok when Yoshiki asked the fans to observe a moment of silence to remember those who did not survive the devastating Thai flood; the band and all 11,000 fans shared a full minute of complete silence.
During Yoshiki’s solo performance at all five concerts, he performed a well-known and well-loved music piece that he dedicated to the respective country, and had the entire audience passionately singing along.
“This particular tour meant a lot to all members of X Japan,” Yoshiki added. “While X Japan wants our music to be successful throughout the world, we have deep roots in this part of the world.”
- X Japan Launches Charity Auction for Flood Victims in Thailand (noisecreep.com)
- X Japan Conquers Latin America (jrockrevolution.com)
- X Japan’s Yoshiki seeks a second coming (japantimes.co.jp)