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By Michael Lara
Tokyo, Japan

Brinsley Forde - "Chillin'"

"…that's why i'm happy when it rains, i'm happy when it pours..." Sure, William and Jim Reid never performed at FUJI ROCK, but this song from 1987's "Darklands" best explains the 2013 edition of FUJI ROCK FESTIVAL. After a very rare, almost full sunshine 2012 FUJI ROCK, this year was predominantly filled with dark skies amidst the amazingly beautiful greenery and artistry. Even though rain was omnipresent throughout, all were happy.

With a rich lineup spanning decades, continents and genres like DEATH GRIPS, THE CURE, NIN, BJORK, GARY CLARK JR., TAME IMPALA, BOYS NOIZE, TAKKYU ISHINO, SPARKS, SAVAGES, BRINSLEY FORDE and others, FUJI ROCK once again delivered a full menu to satisfy all ages.

Fuji Rock Fans (credit: Michael Lara)

Despite the inclement weather, all present knew they were in for a special calling over this weekend with BJORK returning after her 2003 debut, THE CURE regrouping with Roger O'Donnell since their last time here in 2007 and NIN in their festival debut doing what they do best as they seared through your worst fears and best joys as did Brooklyn's DEATH GRIPS.

But there are not enough words to truly explain the carnival of life shared between audience, artist and staff over the five days of FUJI ROCK. You simply need to just experience it for yourself if you desire to expand your mind, your level of education and your tolerance of others while reflecting on yourself as well.

Additionally, and perhaps most importantly, FUJI ROCK demonstrated responsibility to the local community by fostering generous vibrations from this gathering through the continued communal support of relief efforts for 2011's Great East Japan Earthquake Relief Project (Benefit for NIPPON). As sunshine was delivered, generous FUJI ROCK attendees donated ¥1,193,020, which was then matched by the Fuji Rock Committee. Including other donations gathered at the NGO Village, official corporate supporters (BEAMS / Heineken / HUNTER), the Naeba Tourist Association, Tokoro Tengoku and other activities at the festival also including WeSky a Go-Go! brought the total donation amount to ¥3,546,294.

As Japan inches toward the 2020 Summer Olympics, get ready, pack your bags and prepare for July 2014 and the 18th edition of FUJI ROCK.


(credit: Michael Lara)


All opinions expressed by Michael Lara are solely his own and do not reflect the opinions of Stay Thirsty Media, Inc.

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