Birth month: October
Birthplace: Hiroshima Japan
See MEG's official site for videos and song samples.DISCOGRAPHY
Room Girl (2003)
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The multi-talented MEG also has her own fashion line, Carolina Glaser, and runs a clothing store (1 of 3) in Tokyo's famed Harajuku district. So come take a look at the art, popping music and fashion of this talent from the land of the rising sun.
On February 4th, 2009 MEG was kind enough to give an interview to Andrew from J-Pop World. All photos courtesy of MEG.
Let's start with your latest news. On February 11th you released a new single called Freak. Tell us a little about the songs Freak and Toxic.
The production was done by the English band Hadouken! and both Freak and Toxic were written with "stimulation" as their theme. In the music clip too, I also experimented with a new kind of character I haven't done before.
Does the bonus version have something special on it?
Yes, it includes a DVD with the music clip for the songs on it.
On February 25th you have a new DVD coming out. What can fans expect?
I hope they will be able to get a sense of the atmosphere from one of my live parties from watching it, and if that makes them think that they might come and see me on my next tour, that will make me happy.
What type of touring do you plan to do this year?
That's still in the planning stage at the moment.
Let's take a trip back in time and learn more about you. Can you describe the neighborhood you grew up in?
There was a lot of greenery and clean air where I grew up. The summers were hot and the winters were cold.
What kind of kid were you?
Apparently I always had short hair, and was always playing with boys. I was always learning a new hobby or skill.
Did your family have a musical background?
My mother was an elementary school teacher and she would often play the piano at home, so we would sing songs together.
How did you first get into music?
There was no special "thing" that got me started; music and fashion were always a part of my life, and that's still how it is now.
Did you always think music would become such a major part of your life?
I used to daydream about how it would be good if it could be, but I don't think I really imagined anything specific. Now I am in an environment where I can do the things that I am interested in and the things that I like, which isn't normal, but I think it's a very happy thing.
When did you start writing music?
It was around the time when I was 19. It seemed difficult at first, but now it is important to me because that is where I am able to put a bit of the real me into it.
Can you describe how you write songs? Do you have a set process or is each song different?
It differs depending on who I am working with, but when I make one with Yasutaka Nakata, the process is something like: I get the melody, then put the lyrics to it, then we do the recording, and then he does the remixing. Sometimes it turns out to be something completely different from what it was in the demo stage, and I never know what the end product is going to be, so it is a lot of fun.
In 2002 you released your first song, Scanty Blues. How did that come about?
I was scouted at a record company audition. I felt I had been given music as a chance to express something, so there were so many things I had to learn, and I was flat out just getting done what I had to do.
From 2003 to 2007 you released three full albums and did a lot of shows. What are some of your thoughts about those times?
I feel that I have steadily enjoyed music more and more since last year. The clothes and music that I have made give people the chance to meet other people and be happy, and seeing that kind of interaction makes it worthwhile.
Doing live performances, where I can get a direct reaction, has also become more fun for me.
What were some of your greatest challenges and rewards as you began to establish yourself as a musical artist?
I think that music is, compared to the other forms of expression I am involved with, the thing that requires the most help from other. There are a lot of areas where it is very difficult to succeed without the cooperation of many different people. It's like the more people you have supporting the team, the more things you have to think about. But it is also interesting to see the results of the efforts of so many people when things go on sale. I also feel very happy when I see the smiling faces of the people at one of my live performances at some place I have never even been to before.
To start off 2006 you decided to change the uppercase spelling of your name from "meg" to "MEG". Can you explain why the change?
All capitals worked better in the layout of the artwork I wanted to have in connection with the direction my music was taking.
In June of 2008 you released your fifth full album entitled STEP. Can you tell us about the music and how it compared with your earlier works?
It was the second album I had done with the same partner, and the recording was proceeding at a good pace, and I think I wrote the lyrics with a really good vibe.
You did a mini tour in December of 08 in Osaka, Nagoya and Tokyo. How did the shows go? Did you have fun?
My stage wasn't just about music -- there were mini-theatres and other presentations -- so the preparations involved were quite trying. But I got a lot of happiness at all the locations from seeing the audiences enjoy themselves so much.
Looking back over your career so far, what songs are you most proud of?
I like them all; each is a record of something fresh for the time it was made.
As you said, music isn't your only interest. What is Carolina Glaser?
It's a brand of clothes I design.
How did you get into clothing design?
It's like I said before; music and fashion were always a part of my life, so it was very natural for me. I like making things that make people happy.
Do you really run a store in Tokyo's Harajuku district?
It's my third store, and it's its third year at its current location. We get customers from all over Japan and a lot from overseas too.
Is it true that you've played in the online virtual reality game Second Life?
It was at one of my live performances. It was a new experience for me -- having an avatar that looked exactly like me singing like that.
Your albums' cover art are so popular that your publicity posters tend to be taken by fans. Do you see this as a compliment, annoyance or a little of both?
I like to think of it as a compliment that people want to possess my artwork.
How do you keep in such good shape? Do you do certain exercises or eat a certain diet?
I am bad at exercise, and I have no particular rules when it comes to eating.
Can you give us a glimpse into the romantic life of MEG? What is your idea of a romantic date?
These days it would be cooking at home, and taking time over a nice dinner.
What traits do you look for in someone you might date?
Someone I can be myself around. I like someone who is a good driver, and who doesn't drink too much.
Any ideas on marriage or children in the future?
I hope so.
Can you tell us about some of the people you've worked with over the years?
Apart from my own work, I am honored to have been a part of one of Tei Towa's albums and Naohiro Ukawa's video pieces. I have a lot of respect for both artists, and they were very encouraging.
What are your plans for 2009? Will fans get to see a new album?
I am recording an album now that I hope to release in the spring, and I am planning some live performances too.
Do you have anything else you want to bring up or comment on?
I am really happy to have fans in so many different places. Meeting new people often leads to my next path, so I'm very excited about that.
Do you have a final message to all your fans?
Take care of yourselves, don't catch a cold.
For more info checkout MEG's official site and MySpace page. Leave your comments about this interview and read what others had to say at the following link: Interview Comments