Mani Martin spoke to Taarifa from Japan on Monday morning. Here is his account of how events are unfolding there.
“My Japan peace tour is actually a set of different concerts and performances in different events,
I have been here for a month now and so far I have done multiple concerts, first concert was in Hiroshima the city that has a memorial center of the Atomic bomb in the world’s history, I did my first performance in Japan after visiting the memorial,
The other concerts includes The 25th anniversary of Unicef Saga prefecture, Cobe city, Osaka, Fukuoka, and Kochi prefecture where I performed in a big conference on awareness of Africa in Japan, the recent show was at the 15th anniversary of Unicef Fukushima,
During my tour I also visited different places including schools from primary to universities where we had an exchange on how we can use music for peace and put people together.
The audience in Japan is the best, because they have a culture of a great listener any performer in the world would love to get in an audience, They listen first and clap afterwards, then in every show there is a session where they have to let you know what they felt about every song you performed and ask you some questions, it is more of sharing with them that just perform and go.
This tour has and still adding alot to my global audience because first of all I had the experience of performing to a new audience, on a new continent and country, a different society for me to perform for.
It just tought me a big lesson about the music we do, for it doesn’t take to sing in a certain language for your music to be heard by the world, it simply takes to have some relevant content in what we sing because to my experience here in Japan, I see people in the audience crying while I am singing songs in Kinyarwanda! That is mind changing to me.
My next performance of the tour will be on July 7.”