Vogue Japan, May 2012
Preorder in Amazon
[ Translation of article on Vogue’s blog by CleverYummi ]
The episode of visiting YOSHIKI
Hello. I’m Mayumi Nakamura, editor of VOGUE JAPAN.
Today’s episode will be very long. Please spare me your time.
I’ve been YOSHIKI’s LA home on the end of February.
Just the day after of The Academy ceremony.
I’ve never dreamt about visiting YOSHIKI’s house in my life.
Now I’m going to write that unbelievable story.
First of all, I’ll tell you why we decide to invite YOSHIKI appearing in our VOUGE. It was going back to the morning of 16th January. The most talk about news that day was that YOSHIKI had composed Golden Globe theme song. There were lots of TV programs had mentioned about it that morning. When I arrived at my office at 11am, Lana who is photo & syndicate manager run to me and said, ‘We should interview YOSHIKI!!!’
It was very rare Lena says like this. After that, Lena sent me web link about YOSHIKI, such as writing about YOSHIKI at US media, YOSHIKI’s charity activity and Narumi Komatsu’s YOSHIKI’s biography book etc.
I read all of this. Then, I consulted to the editor in chief. She (NB: Might be he) said ‘Shall we offer him?’ straight away. (I’ve written before, I believe my boss’s decision is the fastest in Japan and she (or he) knows what is the current issue
From then, it was like dream. Everything arranged perfectly.
The photographer is Lauren Dukoff who is famous for collaboration with Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, Adele. Lauren is very popular. Normally, it is very difficult to get her appointment. But coincidently, she had a spare day which exactly YOSHIKI had suggested.
The stylist is B Akerlund. B is very timely person since her big break
at Madonna’s Super Bowl costume styling. I wonder would she like to do this job.
Luckily, B was very interested in Japanese culture and accepted job.
B said ‘I would like to do this job. I have been very interested about X Japan.’
Hair stylist is Pamela who is dealing with VOGUE shoots all over the world. Make-up artist is Kathy who is known by everybody in Hollywood. Both of them accepted job offer ‘If for VOGUE’. Pamela said ‘I have known about X Japan before. So I’m looking forward to it.’
This is the first time that everything organised smoothly. Normally, some of them
can’t make it, the shooting schedule can’t fix until the end, something happen middle of the schedule. Due to changing date or shoot condition, we have to change all staffs. So we are always stressful before shooting day. It is impossible to fix all in
one place smoothly like this. I expected YOSHIKI would like to use his own stylist,
hair stylist and make-up artist. I was very surprised YOSHIKI trusted us to choose our own.
We also granted to use YOSHIKI’s his own house as location spot.
I couldn’t believe it, everything so perfect. Would there be some trick?
I was feeling fear while on the way to LA. (Lena smiled, waved when I left my office and said, ‘I can’t believe it such a smoothly arranged. This must be destiny.)
The day before I went to Kiori’s who did production. We went to Chinese restaurant
with Kiori’s mum and dad. Kiori’s dad showed his cup of tea and said ‘Look!
There is tea leaf standing (NB: In Japan we are saying, a tea leaf standing in the tea cup means something good thing will happen). It will be success tomorrow’s shooting.’
I felt more fear, there was tea leaves standing in the cup too. Everything is so perfect.
I whispered to Kiori, ‘What can I do, if the gate at YOSHIKI’s not open tomorrow?’
Kiori was furious and said ‘You, what?’
I bumped into Japanese model Ai Tokunaga who was going to attend The Academy Award ceremony. Then we went shopping together. Ai-chan who has known YOSHIKI said, ‘I envy you, you are going to YOSHIKI’s house!’ Again, I said to Ai-chan, ‘What can I do, if the gate at YOSHIKI’s not open?’
In the end, the shooting day arrived. When I reached in front of YOSHIKI’s gate,
my heart was beating so hard.
The gate was… As scheduled, opened! (Of course)
Then I saw white mansion over the gate. The private lane from the gate to the front door, there were few Cherry trees side of it. I was in tears impressed the beauty of Cherry blossom. (No, I was in tears rather relief of the gate opened. Laugh)
When the front door opened, the first thing I could see was white marble floor
and real black grand piano. While I was choking as ‘This is real YOSHIKI’s house!’,
I could see ridiculous scene in front of me.
‘! ! ! !’
B the stylist was going to bring in ridiculous amount of clothes in to the house. She has prepared to bring in about 300 clothes for ONLY 4 shoots! I thought 100 clothes would be, normal way. But 300 clothes!!! (To be honest with you, I wonder is it OK to bring into the house such a tons of clothes and racks. ) After laid about 300 clothes and 150 accessories, B and I were discussing about styling concept. B said ‘If another parcels from Paris weren’t be stopped at the Custom office, it will be 350 clothes.’ While B was talking like this, she suddenly spotted something back of me. When I turned, YOSHIKI was standing there.
Real YOSHIKI was very soft, kind mannered charming man. I wonder where has been gone his aggressiveness on the stage which he normally shows.
From then, we did clothes fitting and discussing about hair and make-up.
The shooting was quietly started.
YOSHIKI sat in front of piano, then his finger on the key naturally. When the music came out, I nearly closed my eyes for such beautiful tune.
Lauren is one of the rare photographers using real films instead of digital one. Her shutter sounds synchronised with YOSHIKI’s piano tune.
YOSHIKI’s improvised sounds touched all staffs’ heart. While we were in dream world, only Lauren has been carrying on her job slowly.
I felt as if the time has stopped.
I think YOSHIKI’s piano sound is very beautiful and soft. It has a power wrap up everything. The space where only piano sound and camera shutter sound echoed was rather, mysterious and solemnly.
Although main thing was photo shooting, occupied this atmosphere was
YOSHIKI’s piano play.
And I was really surprised without re-touching the photos, YOSHIKI was beautiful! I think this isn’t appropriate to say a man is very beautiful, but YOSHIKI was really beautiful. Once upon time, when I knew YOSHIKI (about 20 years ago?), my first inspiration was that YOSHIKI was very beautiful person. I was very surprised nothing change since.
After the photo shoot, we did interview session.
I believe I will be able to share real YOSHIKI’s charm from my long interview with you. Such as; - Why YOSHIKI is carrying on his charity activity, how to his music born. Even I was impressed by his story. I wish as many as people possible to read my interview.
I have an extra episode. Originally, we had fixed the interview time for only one hour. When I did interview with him, I didn’t check my watch. After a while, our interview was nearly concluded. YOSHIKI said ‘Carry on bit more’. He carried on speaking more another subjects. Then YOSHIKI said, ‘About time now.’ I saw my voice recorder which showed time at 1h and 2 seconds. How on earth YOSHIKI has known exactly timing? I was shivering the fact. Maybe the great musician has this sort of special skill?
On the way back, I was so exhausted for satisfaction. I thought I couldn’t believe that I could have done such a great interview without any disruption. All thanks to YOSHIKI, speaking his honest way. I and Kiori decided to go to drink for celebrating successful work.
The destination was ‘SOHO HOUSE’ where is member’s only club. (I really wanted to go one day there. There were a lot of celebrities that day too.) B came joining us later.
I’ve told YOSHIKI about B has twin kids, he gave to them YOSHIKITTY.
He is so kind! B said, ‘I would like keep myself rather give them.
I would like display it as a treasure.’
After we had third drinks, I had to go regrettably. I had to go back to Japan on 12.30 departure flight. I said to them, ‘Good bye, enjoy!’
Once I was on board, I finished writing my interview article from listening recorded voice machine straight away. While I was writing frantically, air hostesses were kindly brought me a cup of tea every 10 minutes.
I arrived at Haneda Airport at 5 am. I went to my office straight away from airport. After that, only took few days for editing, my job has done.
I’m really grateful that YOSHIKI gave us his approval for my article and
photos at once. From start to the end, YOSHIKI trusted us completely.
I really appreciate that.
Even YOSHIKI sent me message that he liked my interview article.
I felt like everything in my dream.
Everything has moved smoothly. I believe this was YOSHIKI magic!
I’m sorry writing such a long story but thank you for reading it.
Please read my article on the magazine too.
Bigger size~ Can’t wait for this magazine anymore :’)
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