Morio Agata (b. 1948) is a Japanese performer, singer-songwriter, actor, and director who has exhibited a consistent sense of playful experimentation throughout his prolific, five-decade career. Agata’s 1972 single “Sekishoku Erej?” (Red Elegy) sold over half a million copies; further mainstream success followed, with Agata’s contribution to the theme song for NHK TV show Bakeruno Elementary School. But his darker, more political body of music and film work remains less known to international audiences. Material such as his 1977 feature film Boku wa tenshi ja naiyo, his 1970 debut Chikuonban and 1980 Vanity Records offering Norimono Zukan, and several recent recordings have nevertheless been celebrated for their artistic depth and their vital embodiment of Japanese political struggles. Inspired by the chameleonic qualities of David Bowie and Bob Dylan, Agata’s music explores Western pop culture as filtered through the lens of the Japanese avant-garde, often employing disparate forms— folk rock, synth pop, open experimentation, and tango, among others—while foregrounding the artist’s unmistakable voice. In addition to his wide-ranging body of solo work Agata has collaborated with artists such as Haruomi Hosono, Akiko Yano, Eiichi Ohtaki, and zolo band Virgin VS.
Special Halloween sets before and after by DJ L. GRAY
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