NeoBallad was formed in April, 2012. It is a new type of‘Min-yo’ duo with electronic sound with Sachi Wakasa, a powerful vocalist, and Wataru Kamiryo, a critically acclaimed drummer and composer. Sachi, born in Fukushima Prefecture, started her singing career when she won first prize in several national Min-yo contests as a young schoolgirl. Wataru, who has a metronomic drumming style, has played drums for many well-recognized musicians.
NeoBallad has a new sound which is a combination of exquisite Japanese traditional‘Min-yo’ style vocals, lyrics and electronic music with drums. They have used the traditional‘Min-yo’ songs handed down through generations in every region of Japan in exciting pop and avant-garde musical settings of rock and techno, creating a new genre that has found widespread popularity, with their audience saying“It is traditional and is innovative!”
After they released their first album‘01’(Zero-Ichi)in March 2013, NeoBallad made appearances in numerous events and festivals throughout Japan and won many admirers in a wide age range. Wataru has both electronic and non-electronic drums with volume controls to conform to any occasions, which enables this duo to fit into any type of musical setting.
The audience cannot help clapping time with their hands, as they listen to NeoBallad’s unique Japanese ‘Min-yo’ rhythms and melodies arranged in a wide musical variety. Sachi adds fluid motion to these by dancing with a Japanese “sensu” fan and a lucky hammer, creating a celebratory atmosphere at every performance and making it is a must-watch for all music lovers.
Born in Fukushima Prefecture, Japan. Blood type: O
At a very young age, Sachi’s first experience with Min-yo started when she bagan practicing Min-yo songs with her grandmother. Sachi won first prize in Zenkoku Minyo Minbu Shonen Shojo Taikai (National Convention of Folk Songs and Dance) in 1994. That brought her public notoriety and she was spotlighted in local media and newspapers, and she performed at Ryogoku Kokugikan (Stadium for National Sports) in Tokyo. In the same year, she won first prize in the Boys and Girls Category of The National Convention of Aizu Min-yo, and was also awarded the Yomiuri Shimbun Prize. The following year, she won first prize in the Junior Category of‘National Convention of Aizu Bandai-San Song.’
In 2005, Sachi started her extensive career as a unique Min-yo style vocalist to explore a new possibility in Min-yo, performing with various bands and musicians as well as a solo singer. It made her acquire a versatility of expression.
Sachi is a unique vocalist who earns the nickname of ‘natural-born vocaloid’, as well as dancer, who dances with voluptuous grace and sometimes adds humor by comical movements. She is a diva who infuses new breath into Min-yo world and represents the new generation of Japanese culture.
Born in Tokyo, Japan. Blood type: A
Wataru Kamiryo started his carrier as a drummer when he joined Grass Valley and their first album was released in 1987 on CBS Sony. Wataru has a powerful and metronomic drumming style and is great at drumming synchronized with desktop music.
Wataru has played drums for various well-recognized musicians such as Soft Ballet, Koji Kikkawa, Ryuichi Kawamura, Susumu Hirasawa, Jun Togawa, TM Revolution, and so on. He also works extensively as an arranger and sound producer for various musicians and for his own solo works. He is a composer who creates music in a diverse variety such as techno, new wave, jazz, ambient music, and so on.
Wataru works as the general producer of NeoBallad, producing and arranging all of their songs, while performing as an excellent drummer.