Tokyo, Japan, a city of 37 million souls. A vast concrete jungle of bright lights, technological innovation, big business, a pedal to the metal speed of life, and one of the weirdest and wildest nightlife scenes on the planet.
Enter our three Japanese DJs, whose job it is to navigate this labyrinth of hedonistic partying and yet remain balanced, fit and healthy. How do they do it?
Elli Arakawa, SO and the CMYK crew all stay grounded by finding adventure in sport, as well as in everyday life. Adventure for each of them doesn’t have to be something that only happens in far flung places. It’s about staying open, curious, creative, and being yourself.
“I think the whole of life is adventure,” says SO, the resident DJ of the famous festival The Labyrinth. “I’m not particularly conscious of it, but it often turns out to become an adventure as a result. Especially in the music business, for example in a new place you don't know, if you meet an organizer or promoter you don’t know, and when you get a result there, the next stage is waiting again, and if that continuity is strong it’s definitely adventure.”
We talked to these DJs about music and movement and they put together three playlists for the Suunto Spotify channel. Each playlist is designed for a different time of day: morning, sunset and midnight. Read on for good times!
Play your own favorite tunes from your wrist
With the Suunto 7 smartwatch you can connect your headphones to your phone and control music and other audio – adjust volume, pause and skip tracks – straight from your wrist without taking your phone out of your pocket. You can also listen without your phone – the Suunto 7 can store thousands of tracks so you can play your favorite songs or other audio on the go.
To listen to music via your watch without your phone you need a music app on your watch that supports offline use, and of course Bluetooth headphones connected to your watch.
DJ SO football crazy
Satoshi Aoyagi, aka SO, is always occupied with three things: design, music and football. Before the pandemic, he played at clubs around the world. Aside from playing electronic music, he also works as a designer. He’s a fan of Scandnavian design, including Suunto!
SO is not the kind of guy to do things by half measures. When he starts something, he’s all in. That’s just how he ticks.
Playing football is how he stays fit and healthy. “I think soccer gives me a sudden rush that I can never get at work or from music,” he says. “Music is gradual rather than instantaneous. But soccer is the only sudden rush. It's almost instinctual or animal-like. It’s irresistible and I can’t stop!”
SO also works out to keep his body fit and strong for the game. “I’m careful about my diet and I take good care of my body for soccer. I go to the gym for strength training because I want to play a little better on the pitch.”
Elli Arakawa catches waves
Elli Arakawa's extensive travels influence her music and the more adventurous the journeys the more inspired she is when selecting music. Through performing she learns so much about herself and her own creative spirit and what she is capable of as an artist.
Regularly touring Asia and Europe before the COVID-19 pandemic struck, and running her own party STRESS at Tokyo’s best venues, Elli is no stranger to the challenge of finding work-life balance. But she has found a way. Her secret? Music, eating well, surfing and yoga.
Yoga, including meditation, is a key part of her daily wellness routine. It's vital for Elli to stay fit and healthy as DJ’s play all over the place, often from dusk to dawn. Surfing, and just being near the ocean, helps her relax and come back into balance.
“I love using my body as it is the foundation of my strength as a creative person, playing music is my real power that feeds so much of my life and I’m very grateful for that!”
The CMYK crew’s kaleidoscope
Consisting of five members, the CMYK crew is all about breaking walls between genres and instead celebrating the full spectrum of colour in music. The crew runs the CMYK party in Tokyo.
Since the COVID-19 pandemic broke out, the CMYK crew has been creating “audio postcards” every month and sending them out via social media to people in lockdown to cheer them up. Each one hour mixtape comes with a fantasy image that compliments the sound.
“I'm creating a landscape that doesn't exist in the world and sending it out with the mixtape,” says Katsuto Tamagawa, one of the five CMYK crew members. “It’s like a simulated adventure to help people feel as if they had traveled somewhere, both visually and audibly.”
The CMYK crew stays balanced with running and biking, with one member planning to ride across England after the pandemic has blown over. They are also big fans of Finnish saunas!
Read more articles