Wow, I seriously didn’t read anything this week — partly because I just wasn’t into it (the first part of the week) and then I got a bit of a cold (the second part). That’s OK, there are off weeks too. I’ve got a lot of awesome books to read when I do get back into the right mood for it, because my latest shipment from Emmie showed up! I read one this evening, bringing me up to 364,010 words (a difference of 4,000 words, or one わんわん探偵団 book) and I have a feeling I’ll read much more next week. I’m atoning with a post about buying new/used books which should be easier to untangle than the other one I wrote, and I’ll have some more posts up this week as well.
So I would like to to start listening to more Japanese music, and I was hoping you all could come up with some recommendations. My music tastes are all over the map in general: you can look at my last.fm profile to try to figure it out, but it may or may not do you any good. It’s hard to say what exactly I do like, but I tend to find joy in most things I listen to if they’re performed well and with sincerity. What I like to listen to is also very dependent on what I’m doing — if I’m working or concentrating on writing in English or Japanese, I generally can’t listen to anything with lyrics in a language I understand, so at those times I listen to a lot of classical music and video game soundtracks. So what I’m looking for is music to listen to while I’m walking, doing chores or not doing anything very seriously; for immersion purposes it should be music with lyrics that aren’t mumbled.
I only have random bits of knowledge about Japanese music. I love old-fashioned sad music of any type, so I imagine I’d enjoy enka; my knowledge of that is limited to a Hibari Misora album (which I love) and the songs off the Kill Bill 1 and 2 soundtracks, though. I have an inexplicable weakness for the kinds of upbeat songs that show up as the opening songs in shounen anime. Classic songs that everyone knows would be fun, too. Not so much on cute idols whose dancing is better than their singing, but who knows, maybe I’d be surprised.
Music I can buy from iTunes would be nice, but I can go to Kinokuniya too. I’m up for anything, I just don’t particularly know where to start. Any ideas?
- Extensive reading is known as 多読, or tadoku in Japanese. To try it, start with very easy books (ones with no more than two or three unknown words per page), and follow these principles:
1. Don’t look up words in the dictionary while reading.
2. Skip over parts you don’t understand.
3. If you aren’t enjoying one book, toss it aside and get another.
Find something to read!
Hundreds of free books and stories online
Local bookstores and libraries
Buying new and used books online
For more information, read "What Is Extensive Reading?" and "Classification System."
To learn more about Kunihide Sakai, who developed the three principles of tadoku and has worked to popularize it in Japan for years, read this interview with him.
Finally, for more than you ever wanted to know about why I believe extensive reading is worth your time, read my tadoku manifesto.
Superfluous StatsBooks read: 303
Word count (since starting the blog): 380,500
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