Monday, August 23, 2010

ASIA, in a nut shell.

Yes it's true, I am a lazy blogger. Better late than never though, right? So I've spent this entire week recovering from my Asian jet lag. I had no idea it was going to be so brutal! But the tour was well worth the sleepless nights and daytime grogginess. We started off in Singapore. Singfest was pretty impressive I must say. Sharing a bill with Kanye West was not something I ever thought I'd be able to claim. The best part was when Kanye ambushed the airport golf carts we had reserved to shuttle us to the baggage claim. But who is going to question the guy wearing sunglasses at night (indoors), right? thanks for making us walk Kanye!

Tokyo, I must say, is brilliantly cartoon-like. I don't think I've ever seen so many bright colors and smiley faces on one city block in my life. All the girls look like living dolls. Speaking of dolls, i stumbled upon a store that was reserved for doll WIGS specifically, and there was a LINE to get in. this may have been the first time in my life that Ive been truly culture shocked. I loved it.

i think the thing i appreciated most about Japan was the work ethic. no matter where i went there was a sense of urgency to assist me. from the hotel workers to the cab drivers to the guy behind the counter at Mcdonald's (so what, i was craving an egg mcmuffin.) i don't know if i was just over tired , but i had an emotional moment at mcdonalds that morning. mikey was my witness. i felt so overwhelmed by the amount of pride that the Japanese take in their work that i started to cry when the guy behind the counter ran from the back to help me, stapled my bag with great care and efficiency, and passed it to me with two hands and a smile. im sorry but that just doesnt exist in america.

enough about emo-Nicole. Summersonic blew my mind. The audience was practically silent, but I didn't take it personally as I had been forewarned that this is customary. I got really self-conscious on stage because I coughed and I swear the guy all the way in the back row (there were probably 15,000 people) could hear me. We could hear Jay-Z's performance on a distant stage in between each of our songs which was pretty cool because I really wanted to see his show! I had a chance to see A-Ha perform "Take on Me" in Osaka, pretty amazing. He's still got it.

The two club shows in Tokyo were off the hook, and i rarely use that terminology. For whatever reason, the first night at studio coast felt like my best show with the Pumpkins to date. energy-wise we were spot on, and for as quiet as Japanese audiences generally are, this audience knew how to rock it out. at one point during the opening band, mikey went out into the audience and headbanged with everybody, it was quite entertaining i must say!

I had THE BEST sushi ive ever had in my life at the fish market in tokyo. it was simply tuna sashimi with green onion over rice, but it was so fresh and delicious. no words to explain how i feel about the food in japan. the ramen killed me, in the best way possible. the transportation situation was a little trickier than i imagined it would be. i gave up on the subway and took cabs everywhere. i really felt like i was in the movie Lost in Translation. We had a grand old time shopping in Harajuko, a bit overwhelming with all the lights and people screaming into megaphones to promote their stores, but good.

we had a couple of days off before the show in Seoul, Korea. i spent most of my time at various temples. i felt instantly at peace upon entering the buildings. the energy just makes you feel like no matter what you are dealing with at that time, you are going to be ok. and the world is just fine, and people are generally good, and you should be grateful for life and everything the universe has given you. it was definitely a good way for me to keep myself in check. not to mention the buildings themselves are absolutely stunning.

Korea was awesome. everyone in the band was really excited about korean bbq with the exception of myself, seeing as i dont eat beef. but that's alright! the show in Seoul was a great way to end the tour. Korean fans like to take lots of pictures and give you crazy gifts like candy that looks like it might be a bomb. we had a great time there, although we spent a good portion of our time in the underground mall at our hotel. you can't help yourself. it's so accessible!

in the end i think i was most impressed with Tokyo, probably because it felt like i was in a magical fairy tale land where dolls come to life and garbage does not exist. seriously, i did not see a speck of trash on the street. we had a fantastic time overall. Mexico City is next. I have a hunch it's going to be a wild one. then Sunset strip music fest, followed by the 2nd U.S. run. i will try to post more often. im new in the blog world, so cut me some slack . : )

i will post some photos from tour either here or on my facebook page. thanks for reading.....see you at the shows!

xo N


  1. Awesome read, I'd kill to go to Japan and the East of Asia properly some time.

    Glad you're still loving it. It's an amazing time to be a Pumpkins fan :)

  2. Can I just say I love the candid randoms that both you and Mikey are offering of this tour! Like the previous guy said, it's a great time to be a Pumpkins fan!

    Enjoy the trip and memories! ...and crazy real life Japanese Dolls :D

  3. if u need a tour guide in Chile, I'm the man!!!
    fans are really exited to see you guys down here. 12 long years had gone by since the last SP show in Santiago. but nothing really matters any more, since time has come for you to play here. Fans here really love Billy, and if you play those awesome tunes from the band we love, we love you too. and of course, same love goes to Mike and Jeff, and everyone in the crew.

    Once I see the Mighty SP live i could die happy. I have already seen NIN, Interpol and in october ill see Queens of the Stone Age. but SP is what made me what i am. it defined my youth and problably the rest of my life too. and no other band could have been better for that. They taught me how to feel. and now youre a part of that. For all those reasons im eternally grateful to Billy, James, D'arcy, Jimmy, Melissa, Ginger, Lisa, Jeff, Mike and to you.

    May the Force be with you all.

  4. thank you so much for sharing your experiences nicole! ♥

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  6. Fun to read! Thanks for sharing!


  7. I absolutely love the two-handed pass-off from Japanese folks. At my store there are some incredibly respectful Japanese customers that are never in a hurry, always pause to give you their full attention, and only give or take things with both hands. It makes me want to slow down!

    so glad you're blogging! it's clear you have a lot to say!!

  8. thoughtful sharing :)

    looking forward to see you in action this friday oct 8, 2010 in jakarta!!

  9. Saw you perform at Java Rockinland just now great great great! Thanks for coming down, never thought I'd have the chance to see the Pumpkins live in my lifetime :D

    Really wish Billy would talk more to the crowd when he was on stage though. But nevertheless, it was an awesome show. Keep on rocking Nicole!