Monday, June 8, 2015

MASAMI TAYAMA STILL ROCKS! The Folk Singer Comes to Hino, Tokyo!

Masami Tayama rocks the house in Hino, Tokyo! Photo by Brett Homenick.

Shinji Chujo has really grown up. Most of us would remember Masami Tayama as the chubby youngster from the kaiju classic Mothra (1961), but the former child actor has been a musician and singer for decades, choosing to pursue a different form of entertainment.

Tayama-san recently moved to Shikoku, making his trips to the Tokyo area even rarer, but it is always a treat to see him perform live. On June 6, he came to Hino, Tokyo, to sing Japanese folk music to his appreciative audience.

I told Tayama-san about the recent passing of Hiroshi Koizumi, his Mothra co-star. He hadn't heard about it and was naturally saddened. We both agreed he was a true gentleman.

One of Tayama-san's trademark is his ubiquitous Superman hat, so I finally asked him about it. He told me he was a fan of the old George Reeves Superman TV show, making him by far the coolest fan of that program I've ever met.

When it was all said and done, Tayama-san and I (along with our mutual friend Tada-san) rode back toward the center of Tokyo together. On the train ride, Tada-san played some clips of kaiju movies he had prepared on his smartphone, including ones from Gamera 3 (1999) and Godzilla (1954). 

Tayama-san's next live performance in Tokyo will be in September, and I hope to be in attendance for that.

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