This is the eight and final blog on the Hip Hop Slam presents Positive Omen Japan Tour 2011 featuring DJ Quest, Mista B, DJ ALF, and DnZ that also included Quest’s son Alex - aka DJ Train – who traveled on the tour and did one performance. Included are the two tour overview video reports (above + below) care of Mista B who also wrote the in-depth report below. I had seen Mista B in New York City, right before he flew out to Japan, where we were both judges on the US DMC Finals. Likewise I had just seen DJ ALF shortly before the tour – well a week earlier at his wedding down in Maryland. Exactly one week after getting married the DJ, who once lived in Japan, was heading out on tour of Jpaan. Now that’s some real dedication to the art of turntablism! DJ ALF also weighs in here on this blog on the tour. “The tour overall was grand! I think we have sparked a huge interest in the main purpose of the Positive Omen tour. Although some of the venues had a small turnout due to Obon, we had a great time jamming out.. So, whatever you can please donate whatever you can to a legit organization that will enhance the tsunami relief efforts in Japan. Thanks goes out to everyone whom have been supportive throughout the tour. This is just the beginning!” summarized DJ ALF of the tour.
Mista B says: “In Japan, I took part of a tour with DJs Quest, DnZ, and ALF. The tour was called the Hip Hop Slam presents Positive Omen Tour and it was for the people of Japan who had suffered through the earthquake and it’s fallout. The tour took us from Shibuya-Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Okinawa, Rupungi, and back to Shibuya. We were doing all kinds of gigs and events ranging from in-stores, live stream shows, party rocking events, and showcasing. We also took numerous forms of transportation to get around; from taxi’s to bullet trains. You name it, we rode it.
Not only was it my first tour, but I was flying straight from New York, having just judged and showcased at the DMC USA Finals. I flew half way around the world to be in Japan. It was a good mix of DJs on the tour because we all brought something different to the table meaning some interesting music to be. Some shows had limited space, or not all the equipment like turntables that we needed. For the most part, we improvised with whatever set-up we had but I think we rocked to the most of our capabilities. It was certainly a dynamic sound that we were creating.
One day, we took the train from Shibuya-Tokyo, to Osaka, lugging all our luggage, four mixer boxes, merchandise, and other random items. On this same day, we had four sets in three different locations. We sound checked in a place called Slow Land Cafe went to do an in-store at Manhattan-West Records, went back to do two sets at Slow Land Cafe then with whatever energy we had left, went to DJ our after part at Do With Cafe. We were taking three-four cabs to each location. It was crazy to say the least. With all that being said, I enjoyed the crowd at Osaka the most. They were so receptive to the music we were performing and very welcoming. I want to go back there if I ever go back to Japan.
Another highlight is performing at the DMC Eastern Japan Finals. The system there is different. For prelims, they DJs get three minutes. For the final round, the DJs also get three minutes. I don’t know if the rule varies from country to country but it did make the night go by fast. There were a lot of dope performances and the crowd really cares about their DJs. In the United States for instance, you do a beat juggle and less than half the crowd can follow it, let alone a complex beat juggle routine. In watching some footage I took, I see that a lot of men and women are following and head nodding with the beat juggles. I really appreciated this because it shows me the respect the little nuances and intricate things the go over a lot of people’s heads in turntabilism.
Everyone in the Positive Omen tour held it down too. Like I said earlier, it was a good balance of different but talented DJs. If we had the same styles, then I think the tour would of been a bit bland. Overall, I’m pretty happy and proud to have been apart of this tour. Being able to hang with talented DJs who are good people is a blessing or a positive omen haha! I’ve gained so much experience and I hope that the people of Japan enjoyed what we’ve had to share. Thanks to Tyron Daniels, Tomokuni Nishimura, Shux Files, Earl the Pearl (Monroe), Circus DJs, Japan DMC, DJs Quest, Alf, DnZ, and Hip Hop Slam!” – Mista BCategory : Bay Area Hip-Hop History 1990's, Hip-Hop DJ News