Born and raised in Tokyo, Tucker is a DJ/musician well known for his use of a wide range of instruments, including an electone.
He started off in the 1990s performing in the underground Tokyo music scene. From there he joined the Natural Calamities Tour and performed across the United States. Since then he has wowed audiences across the world with his humorous, lively, entertaining, and thumping beats, as well as taking the time to produce two original albums.
This Friday he comes to rock the Shelter with his unique sound and signature theatrics. We were able to talk to Tucker to hear about what inspires him, his influences, and some of the crazy experiences he’s had around the world.
Where: 5 Yongfu Lu, near Fuxing Lu, 永福路5号 近复兴路
Starts:Friday, November 27th at 10pm
Cover: 50 RMB
Where do you draw a lot of your inspiration from?
It’s all from my everyday life, the environment I’m living, jobs and thinking. Everything from my regular single day of my life.
What were some of your musical influences growing up?
When I was in 20’s, I had worked at a lot different vinyl stores, so i got a lot influences from all different kind music, also Tokyo is a culture city, I went to a jazz show after I checked out a metal live show. Japan is a very open society, you can listen to all different kinds music even if you don’t know the background of the music. Well in a good way and bad way.
In addition to your impressive skills as a DJ, you’re also a talented musician who can play many instruments. How often do you use different instruments as part of your show?
To me, most of the time, I like to play all different kind of instruments. I usually don’t decide which instrument I will play or not play, so I always have different instruments in my show.
You are particularly well known for playing the electone, when did you start playing? How has this instrument influenced your work as a DJ?
To me the electone is not a cool instrument. But when I played around with the electone my mom used to play, it turned out really interesting sounds. The electone is definitely not a popular instrument with the Japanese youth, it’s just an accessory for those stupid rich families. The one I’m using was really expensive 30 years ago, but it’s no any value like garbage. I feel it is kind of unique because no one is using it now, I want to put a new value into this sad, rich people’s instrument.
Your music has been defined as a “neo-Tokyo Vaudeville show”, what do you think this means?
I’m not really sure what people call my life, but I just do what I want to do in my live show.
Were you always striving for that kind of atmosphere, or did this style develop recently?
I played in a normal way when i started to playing at a cafe. I have a lot punk friends and they asked me to play at their show, so I started to play like a punk musician, all my friends are really open mind to all new things, so we were even doing pogo dance just with organ and rhythm box, it was so fun! We laughed our asses off when we saw ourselves dance with the old family organ sound. So it changed my performance style, it’s kind funny when you imagine a family kind sound and hard core action together.
In 2005 the world saw the release of your second album, “Electoon Wizard”, which won awards from audiences and critics. Can we expect another album coming from you in the future?
I have got many jobs for TV advertising and stage recently, I have no time to do my own music. I felt really empty if I keep doing this, I tried to work hard, but I’m bored. I remember my mom told me never make your hobby into a work, it’s really hard to do something you like in life. I want to find the best environment for myself making my own music. I will do some work with an artist called Magazine King who is from Korea.
You’ve had quite a storied career performing around the world, are there any special moments that truly stick in your mind?
Once I got a gig without any information in Shibuya, I found out it was a disco party for girls and guys who work for night club. But the show went unbelievable well, everyone went crazy, some people even got naked and danced their ass off. I only know about the underground scene in Tokyo, I never knew that those people who are working at the office also could be so crazy.
What do you think of the Shanghai music scene?
I can’t really talk about the scene in Shanghai, I’m really looking forward this event in Shanghai. It’s like when I went Korea a couple of months ago, I was totally shocked. I need to feel it by myself.
We’re pretty excited for the show this Friday, is there anything in particular we should expect to see?
I will always have fun at my shows, I hope everyone at the show will have fun too, let’s get retarded