ASA-CHANG&JUNRAY was founded by the percussionist and band master of Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra, ASA-CHANG. Leaving TSPO in the midst of its golden days, and after playing as a free percussionist, ASA-CHANG forms ASA-CHANG&JUNRAY with guitarist/ programmer, Hidehiko Urayama in 1998. In the same year, they released first album “Tablamagmabongo” from Trattoria. Super tabla player, U-zhaan joins in April 2000 and there completes the present ASA-CHANG&JUNRAY. Making the FUJI ROCK FESTIVAL that year, ASA-CHANG&JUNRAY was able to play in FUJI ROCK 4 years in a row! In 2001, an inspirational master work “HANA” was released as second album, and this was greatly recognized by fans and affiliates. Putting out a national tour of 16 cities in the same year, ASA-CHANG&JUNRAY releases single “HANA” and album “JUN RAY SONG CHANG” from UK label, Leaf. This was a world wide release.
“HANA” became the best selling single in all Leaf history. In September of the same year, first full length album “TSU GI NE PU” was released, and their second national tour of 21 cities were brought out. In the same 2002, “JUN RAY SONG CHANG” was selected ‘Best Album’ by UK magazine WIRE. In 2003, album “TSU GI NE PU” was released worldwide. In January 2004, the legendary idol Kyoko Koizumi appeared in single “SENKA” as their first featuring vocalist ever.
“HANA” was selected as the tie-up song of a CM for French major cosmetic shop, Marionnaud. This CM was made by Tran Ahn Hung, the director who won the Golden Camera Award in Cannes Film Festival with “Scent of Green Papaya.” ASA-CHANG&JUNRAY’s expression lives beyond country bound and culture.
ASA-CHANG started ASA-CHANG & JUNRAY with guitarist/programmer, Hidehiko Urayama, releasing their first album “TABLA MAGMA BONGO” from Torattoria.
ASA-CHANG recruited a tabla player, U-Zhaan, as a new member. They firstly performed in “MAN DRIVE TRANCE” party organised by ROVO. Within only three months after this successful first live, they got the opportunity to play in Fuji Rock Festival, performing five times on two of three days.
The following year, their second album, “HANA” came out. This album received the reputation as ‘an utterly new music which people had never listened to’. The track “HANA” was contributed to the film “KEMONOGARE ORERA NO SARU TO (Getting Wild with Our Monkey)” (JAPAN, 2001) as an ending theme.
the album “HANA” was chosen as ‘the BEST 10 Albums of the year 2001’ by various music magazines. The same year in May, ASA-CHANG & JUNRAY signed with The Leaf Label in England, and released their first 12” “HANA” for the label as well as the album “JUNRAY SONG CHANG” that compiled albums “TABLA MAGMA BONGO” and “HANA”. In England, the track “HANA” was on the airplay in John Peel’s program, and was played in other radio programs and nightclubs.
the album “TSU GI NE PU” was released in Japan, and the band went on a Japan tour through November.
Fabric Label in London released a mix CD, “Fabriclive 07” hosted by John Peel, introducing the track “HANA”.
proving their ability and potential of their music, “JUNRAY SONG CHANG” was acclaimed in U.K. as Number 4 album of 2002 in The Wire, Top 40 album of 2002 in Mojo magazine, and Top 40 single of the year in Muzik.
This hit of the album went across Europe, U.S.A., and Chile taken as one of the most sensational music.
the Leaf Label released British edition “TSU GI NE PU” along with its analog.
ASA-CHANG & JUNRAY was invited to perform in annual FUJI ROCK FESTIVAL for the 4th time, which is extraordinary. Apart from that ASA- CHANG & JUNRAY re-arranged their songs and composed music for a dance company “Idevian Crew” for their performance in Tokyo in September, and in New York and Montreal in January.
they released a new single “SENAKA” featuring Japanese cutest pop singer/actress Kyoko Koizumi (MU-ON). The single was a successful challenge of ASA-CHANG&JUNRAY for the wider audience to introduce their ‘comprehensible’ world of music.
ASA-CHANG & JUNRAY released their highly completed 4th album ”MINNA NO JUNRAY”, including the singles ”SENAKA” and ”KANA”, both of which were released prior to this album.
Following their release of the new album, ASA-CHANG & JUNRAY made a long awaited nationwide tour ”MINNA NO JUNRAY Tour” in Japan from March to April (22 lives in 20 cities).
ASA-CHANG & JUNRAY performed at one of the biggest outdoor concerts in Japan - the RISING SUN ROCK FESTIVAL 2005 in EZO. The concert was filled with audiences and created much sensation, however it was their first time to perform at the Rising Sun Rock.
Soon later, ASA-CHANG & JUNRAY released their first DVD ”LIVE NO JUNRAY”.
This DVD version best album features performances from MINNA NO JUNRAY Tour as well as previous music clips.
“JUNRAY DANCE CHANG,” a 3 days collaboration event by ASA-CHANG&JUNRAY and rising contemporary dancers were held from 29th to 31st at Roppongi Super Deluxe.
The contemporary dancers that were featured in the unique PVs “Tsugineputo Ittemita” “Senaka” and “Kana” danced to the live performance of ASA-CHANG&JUNRAY. They also showcased new choreographies such as for “Hana” and other tracks.
With much original music and dance performances, the 3 day event was a great success.
A brand new challenge—“Shimeno Junray;” a live project for the audience to enjoy ASA-CHANG&JUNRAY from all 360 degrees. Thoroughly surrounded by the audience, ASA-CHANG&JUNRAY completely rocked the audience.
Performed in “Fuji Rock Festival 07” in 2 years!!
Executed tour “Chisana Aki Tour!!”
Appeared in many other events, and also started production of the next piece.
Released ‘JUNRAY Sweat Suit’!!
Performed in “Fuji Rock Festival 08!!”
Fully utilizing the 10th year, focused in production of the new album.
Headlined in the first Europe live “LEXPERIENCE JAPONAISE - Du 21 au 28 mars 2009!”
(March 28, 2008@Nimes, France)
Executes “JUNRAY DANCE CHANG” the music & dance collaboration event at Setagaya Public Theatre in 3 years!!
The ultimate form of “ASA-CHANG&JUNRAY to Dance no Soshisoaina Kankei” finally completes here at the holy ground of art, Setagaya Public Theatre!!
(May 15, 2009 – May 17, 2009)
Release of full album “Kage No Nai Hito” (means “A Man without Shadow”) in 4 years!!
Performe in summer festival “WORLD HAPPINESS 2009”