Chibi Beatz was an incredible outsider experience of a westernised view into Japanese culture. Chibi Beatz, created by the same people who run Yokai Beatz which is held around Halloween, is a small underground “rave”/mini-convention where trinkets are sold and performances are held. It is named after Japanese folklore and people often people cosplay as Japanese Yokai which are a class of supernatural monsters, spirits and demons. Very much like people would around Halloween.
Ellis mentions that “When researchers write autoethnographies, they seek to produce aesthetic and evocative thick descriptions of personal and interpersonal experience.” (Ellis, 2011), and when looking at it like this and imagining the dark hall of Chibi Beatz with the stage lights shining down on my friends as they danced to Hatsune Miku songs with their friends and fans yelling to every beat of the song tapping their light sticks along as well as calling out their stage names. Ellis basically discusses that it’s all about telling a story, which in turn is about engaging the audience. “Writing personal stories thus makes “witnessing” possible” (Ellis, 2011) Which is why I’m trying to write down every detail about my experiences
The first time and one of the only times I have been experienced the fan culture of idol dancing was at Neko Nation. Which is similar to Chibi Beatz and Yokai Beatz in the sense that it is a westernised view into Japanese culture. Neko Nation featured catgirls, live performances from online music creators such as Teddyloid, performances from idol dances and J-Pop and J-Rock singers. Neko was similar to Chibi Beatz except it was set in a university bar, which as just as dark. The stage was illuminated by stage lights and bright LEDs and I spent the entire night cheering my friends on who were on stage with the colour that matched their skirts
Every idol show that I can think of is somewhere dark like a bar or hall and the stage is illuminated with bright lights lighting up the dancers. Probably the more famous one I can recall would be Uncle Tetsu’s Angel Garden, which is a Japanese style café dedicated cheesecake and every Saturday at 9pm, Idol performers AGS102.
Ellis mentions that “ethical issues affiliated with friendship become an important part of the research process and product” which is something I will need to consider since all of the idols I am apart of the fan group for and am watching are all my friends.
Ellis, C., Adams, T.E., and Bochner, A.P. (2011) ‘Autoethnography: An Overview‘, Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 12:1. Available at: http://www.qualitative-research.net/index.php/fqs/article/view/1589/3095