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First Times With ONE OK ROCK’s Taka Moriuchi

Rock Sound
Rock Sound 17 December 2018 at 18.54

ONE OK ROCK frontman Taka Moriuchi walks us through the beginnings and first experiences that have shaped him.

ONE OK ROCK are the winners of Best Live Performance at the 2018 Rock Sound Awards! Pick up your commemorative ONE OK ROCK magazine cover and poster print now, worldwide from AWARDS.ROCKSOUND.TV

Get to know ONE OK ROCK's charismatic frontman a whole lot better- he's shared with us a whole lot of his firsts! Starting off with the first...

…ALBUM I FELL IN LOVE WITH
“This is still one of my favourite albums of all time, actually. It was Linkin Park’s ‘Meteora’, and I was so impressed from the first time I heard it. They’re still my favourite band, and they inspired me a lot starting out.”

…SHOW I WENT TO AS A FAN
“I guess it would have been one of my father’s shows, as he’s a famous country singer in Japan. I was probably only four or five years old - I went to a lot of concerts when I was still really young, so music has always been such a normal part of life for me, especially with both of my parents being singers. It’s funny because I don’t know if it was a fun experience or anything… but when I look back, that’s the one I always remember.” 

…INSTRUMENT I PICKED UP
“It was a microphone, I think. When I was six years old or around there, I would be in my room singing one of my father’s songs or something else, and my dad would hear it and come by, to help fix the way I was singing! When it comes to performing properly, that came later, when I was about 13. We have a big culture of karaoke in Japan, so there was probably some of that along the way too…”

…TOUR WITH ONE OK ROCK
“Our first time touring in Japan was 2007, and that time it was just three headline shows. They were in Tokyo, Osaka, and Nagoya. I was so nervous the whole time. We played the first show, and my voice was just gone. I went full blast for the whole thing and completely lost my voice after the show, so that was pretty hard at the time!”

…FESTIVAL I WENT TO
“The first festival I ever went to was also the first festival I performed at, back in 2006. It’s a festival in Japan, just outside of Tokyo. I was goofing around so much before the show that I pulled back the nail on my big toe and had to go to the hospital. When I came back I did the show anyway, but I was kind of worried, and it hurt the whole time - I was almost jumping on one leg while singing. It was a pretty good experience for me because I’d never tried singing on just one leg before… it became ‘The one-legged show.’”

…MUSIC VIDEO I MADE
“We shot so many music videos in Japan, a whole bunch, so I’m not sure exactly which one was first. But I do remember the first one we shot overseas was ‘Last Dance’. We made it in the United States, and it was a totally different approach and direction. The system was totally American-style, so it felt kind of strange at first, but overall I really enjoyed it.”

…TIME ONE OK ROCK PLAYED OVERSEAS
“This was in 2011, in Korea. It was a festival, Jisan Valley Rock Festival. Then our first time in America was playing Warped Tour 2014, in Los Angeles. We didn’t know what to expect going into it, so in the end, we kind of winged it. Luckily it turned out okay!”

…BAND MERCH I EVER BOUGHT
“I usually don’t buy band merch, but we actually went to a concert by The Struts not long ago in Los Angeles. I bought some of their merch… and it might have actually been the first time I’ve ever bought any! The show was great - Butch Walker came out, Chad from the Red Hot Chili Peppers came out - and they really know how to work a crowd. It was at a really small, legendary venue just off Sunset Boulevard, which made it even better.” 

…TIME I SANG GUEST VOCALS ON SOMEONE ELSE’S SONG
“I think it was when I sung on Simple Plan’s ‘Summer Paradise’, in 2013. It was the first time I’d done a proper collaboration with some artists, and I remember going into the studio, not being able do exactly what I wanted, because I wasn’t the best at English back then. I wasn’t in my element, so it took me some time to get used to it. But it ended up being one of the reasons that I decided to pursue America with ONE OK ROCK.”

…TIME I HEARD MY SONG IN A MOVIE SOUNDTRACK
“That was on the first Rurouni Kenshin live action film, which was based on a Japanese animation. ‘The Beginning’ was the featured song from that movie. I’m actually friends with the lead actor in it, [Takeru Sato] so we went to see the film together. It’s always a really good experience to work with a friend, and be able to add a different level to that.”

ONE OK ROCK are the winner of Best Live Performance in the 2018 Rock Sound Awards! Pick up your commemorative Rock Sound Awards cover now from AWARDS.ROCKSOUND.TV

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