[INTERVIEW] Hiroshi Kitadani

We had an opportunity to interview an anisong legend, Hiroshi Kitadani! Hiroshi Kitadani was born in Yamaguchi, Japan. His first major debut was with the 3-piece band Stagger in 1994. After his other band, Lapis Lazuli, broke up, he started on his solo work.

His debut single “We are!” was used as the first opening theme song for the anime ONE PIECE and was a massive hit. He has since performed theme songs for other titles including Kamen Rider Ryuki and Yu-Gi-Oh!

He joined the legendary JAM Project in 2002 and has performed with them at Budokan and around the world. Besides singing for JAM Project, he also writes songs for many artists. In 2012, he released his original album “Real”. In 2014, his 20th anniversary, he released his best album, “SCORE”, and did a tour in Japan.

Besides signing, his hobbies include cooking, training, playing baseball, and watching anime.

Hiroshi Kitadani will perform at Anisong World Matsuri at Anime NYC on November 17th in New York.

※日本語版のインタビューは英語記事下に記載

 

– Your performance style is very energetic and passionate like a rock star! What do you usually do to build your stamina?

I don’t necessarily do it for the concerts, but about 2 years ago, I started going to the gym almost everyday. After I work out my abs and back, I run for about an hour and half. Thanks to all that training, my strength went up.

– When did you decide to become a singer? Did you look up to any artists back then?

I started to really consider performing around the time I graduated junior high. I was influenced by 80s metal and hard rock bands.

– It’s been exactly 19 years since one of your most famous songs, “We Are!” (from One Piece) was released. I heard that you were originally cast only for the test, but you ended up singing this song officially. What was your first thought when you found out that you would sing anisong?

At that time, my contract with the recording company had ended, and I was worried about I was going to do next, so when I was given the opportunity to sing again, I felt so much joy. Plus, it was the theme song for a really popular manga. I thought it was a dream! (laugh)

– If you could eat a Devil’s Fruit from One Piece, what kind of power would you like to obtain?

If I could use Brulee’s Mirror-Mirror Fruit, it would be so convenient – I could go anywhere in the world.

– How did you grow as an artist since you joined JAM Project in 2002?

During the time I’ve spent with the members of JAM Project, I’ve grown in every way – technically, mentally, and as a human being.

– The opening song of ““One Punch Man”, “The Hero!! Set Fire to the Furious Fist” is really popular in theU.S.! How was the American audience’s reaction when you sang this song at Anisong World Matsuri in Los Angeles in 2016??

I remember that we had a lot of fun.

– What is the biggest difference between performing solo and performing in a group?

I feel safer? (laugh)

– You often upload photos of your delicious cooking on Twitter! What is your signature dish?

That would be miso soup!

– You have performed in the U.S. so many times! What is the most memorable thing that happened to you during your stay in the U.S.?

Even though I couldn’t speak English, I ordered take-out at McDonalds and I got yelled at by the employee because I didn’t realize they were calling my name…! (laugh)

– Lastly, what is the cutest, coolest and most amazing thing to you?

“Cutest” is a hedgehog (I own one).

“Coolest” is a hero who goes to battle even though he might lose.

“Most amazing” is the power of the people who cherish anime and anisong!

Kawaii Kakkoii Sugoi would like to appreciate Hiroshi Kitadani, RESONANCE Media and LeftField Media for this interview opportunity.

Anisong World Matsuri: http://anisongworldmatsuri.com/

 

Hiroshi Kitadani

 

– きただにひろしさんと言えばロックなスタイルを貫きつつも元気なパフォーマンスが魅力的です。普段からライブに向けて体力作りなど行っていますか?

ライブに向けてというわけでもないですが2年位前からジムでトレーニングを ほぼ毎日しています。 内容はマシンで腹筋と背筋の後1時間半ランニングで汗をかいていますおかげで体力は上がっています。

– 歌手になろうと思ったのはいつ頃でしたか?その時に影響を受けていたアーティストは誰でしたか?

中学卒業する頃には本気で歌手を目指していましたね80年代のメタル、ハードロックバンド達に凄く影響を受けました。

– きただにさんの代表曲でもある「ウィーアー!」が発売されてちょうど19年になりますが、元々は仮歌をいれたことがきっかけでアニソンデビューすることになったと拝見しました。最初アニソンを歌うことが決まった時の心境はいかがでしたか?

その時は事務所とレコード会社の契約が終わってこれからどうしようかって不安の時期でまた唄えるチャンスをもらえた事で喜びしかありませんでした.しかも当時人気マンガの主題歌って事もあって夢じゃないかって思いましたw 。

– もし「ワンピース」に出てくる悪魔の実を食べることになったら、どんな力を手に入れたいですか?

ブリュレのミラミラの実鏡を使って世界中どこへでも移動できるので何かと便利。

– 2002年にJAM Projectに加入してからはどのように歌手として成長しましたか?

テクニック的な事はもちろんメンタル的な部分もJAMメンバーとの時間の中で人間的にも成長できました。

– JAM Projectで「ワンパンマン」の主題歌の「THE HERO!! ~怒れる拳に火をつけろ~」はアメリカでも大ヒットしました!ロサンゼルスのアニソンワールドマツリのライブでこの曲を披露した時のアメリカ人のお客さんの反応はいかがでしたか?

最高に盛り上がった事を覚えています。

– ソロで歌う時とグループで歌う時に一番大きな違いはなんですか?

安心感?ですかね(笑)。

– きただにさんと言えばツイッターでよくおいしそうな手作りご飯を見かけます。ずばり一番の得意料理はなんですか?

ズバリ!お味噌汁ですかね。

– 今までアメリカだけでも何度もライブを行っていますね。アメリカにいらっしゃった際に一番印象に残っているエピソードがあれば教えてください。

英語をしゃべれないにも関わらずマクドナルドでテイクアウトを注文店員さんから自分が呼ばれていることに全く気づかず怒られました(笑)。。。

– 最後にきただにひろしさんにとってカワイイ、カッコイイ、スゴイことがあれば教えてください!

カワイイのはハリネズミ(飼っています)

カッコイイのは負けるかもしれないと分かっていても立ち向かうヒーロー

スゴイのはアニメとアニソンを愛してくてるみんなのパワー!。。。

 

アニソンワールドマツリ: http://anisongworldmatsuri.com/

 

きただにひろし

http://kitadani-hiroshi.com/

https://twitter.com/gokigensandany

 

 

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