News Sushi #99: Morsels of News from Japan and Beyond


News Sushi #99 And we (Hamish) keep serving the best News Sushi!
Editor Note:It is Friday and that means it is time for the World Famous, soon to be Intergalactic Famous, News Sushi from our very own, Hamish Downie. Hamish brings us a decidedly different slant on Pop Culture as viewed through the lens of a non-native living in Japan.

Thank you (ありがとうございました) Hamish, for your insights.

こんにちは!Which means “Hello”!

How is everyone doing?

Is this lockdown business getting you down? Let us take your mind off it for a little while.

Here’s Prince doing a song about where I’m living:

And here he is doing a soundcheck in Osaka in the 90s:

Just casually doing an amazing version of “Summertime” on piano. Casually killing it. Like the genius he was.

Here’s some news from Naomi McDougall Jones about a new radio play she’s been a part of…

“A Covid-19 radio drama – I was honored to write the first episode – out now – for a new podcast, Day by Day, that’s producing twice-weekly 15-minute narrative shorts about life during Covid-19. They’re doing beautiful work that will add a little soupçon of shared experience to your day. Check them out!

Day by Day is a new, twice-weekly podcast of 15-minute narrative short radio plays “inspired by our new normal” – by a wide range of writers, all about life during COVID-19.

The episode I wrote – Carry Me Home – is out now on all major platforms and is performed by Gideon Adlon (Blockers), Brandon Flynn (13 Reasons Why), and Michael O’Neill (Dallas Buyers Club). It also features a song by my very talented brother, Obadiah Jones. The production company, Must B Nice, did such a beautiful job on this episode and I have to imagine that they will all be quite wonderful. I know I look forward to listening to them all and finding shared emotional experience and healing through storytelling.

Here’s the links to listen:


When people aren’t watching “Tiger King”, they’ve been watching “Contagion” – and I’ve been guilty of both… but, maybe in Japan, we should be watching “Shin-Godzilla”, which came out a few years ago and was largely inspired by the reaction of the government to the Great Tohoku Earthquake in 2011. The parallels to now are a bit mind-blowing… tells Yuta –

“This is a video where I passionately talk about a Japanese film that I should you should watch right now. Shin Godzilla (Or Godzilla Resurgence) is a relevant film that simulates how the Japanese government would react to a crisis like Godzilla and it overlaps with the current situation we are all in.”

I’m sure you’re feeling boxed in at the moment (I know I am)… but, luckily we have Dean’s series to keep us going. Dean tells us –

“Dean and the team stop off at Izumo Taisha Shrine. Said to be one of the oldest shrines in Japan, it’s famous for granting peoples wishes to find love! Dean’s looking, but will his prayers be answered! ‘runAway Japan’ was created by and is managed by Dean Newcombe and a team of dedicated creators. We create original content in Japan, and focus on Travel, Adventure and Fun.”

runAway website:

And here’s a fun trivia game show we have from Elan (who was in my short, “Lost Hope” and in my upcoming feature film)…

免疫力について About Boosting Your Immune System

久しぶりの豆知識の動画です!リエペディア② 健康の話をしましょう! In which I do another trivia video! Riepedia ② Let’s talk about health!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s selections… and finally, here’s a challenge…


Sneaker challenge…

but, maybe don’t try this at home. You might pull a hamstring.

If you are so inclined, I’d really appreciate your support by watching “An American Piano” on Amazon:

Watch “An American Piano”:

Or giving my new podcast “Pop and Fizz” a listen:–Bob–Ham–Bob-Werley-part-2-ecvkji

I’m sure Ben and Keith would appreciate it if you could donate to the upkeep of this site.

Thanks everyone. Let’s keep supporting each other and we will make it through this situation!


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