Friday, March 15, 2013

doing things that matter: the Heal Japan benefit EP

2013 shot off like a freakin’ rocket and at best, I have barely managed to hang on - which is why it has taken me this long to post a new blog entry.

Today, I actually have a day off in which, for once, I’m not beholden to be any particular where or do any particular thing - and I can’t remember a day when that has been the case. It’s been a helluva long time - and I’m all-too-aware that one day like this is too precious and will be too brief. -But in it, in addition to taking out the recycling, laundering and changing my bedsheets, and doing the dishes,!

You know I choose to work at Starbucks in the effort to devote at least some quality time and energy to my music while attempting to maintain Starbucks’ eligibility requirements to secure healthcare benefits. That being the case, I already feel as though I juggle two jobs. Then, this January, I met someone who asked me to join him on some projects he is working on that I believe in to the degree that I agreed to jump on board --so it’s been nonstop for me since. And then there are relationships with family and friends that require investment in and the usual chores of everyday life to have to tend to. And I know that most of you feel this crazy frenzied pace we all seem to be caught up in anymore. Through it, I feel that something significant has been lost. And I miss Mayberry.

Through and despite all of this, God helped see the production of the first commercial release of my music through: the Heal Japan benefit EP --of which a physical limited edition is currently in production.

The single from the 3-track EP is a song I wrote in 2009 during a severe pang of homesickness for Japan, called 日本を愛す (Nihon wo Aisu).

And i give you the music video for it:

In the end, I want to have lived my life doing things that mattered. That being the case, this EP benefitting the survivors of the triple-fold disasters that struck Japan on 3/11/11 is the single most important thing I have done in my life far. I’ve invested over a year of my life -often working on it 'til 4am or later- and earnings (you appreciate how little I make working where I do) into producing this project on the faith that some of you still care as deeply and feel as strongly as I do about the aftermath in Tohoku ...and are willing to DO something to prove it!

The survivors in the Tohoku region of Japan who were most severely impacted by these events are still suffering now two years on. Though the world appears to have moved on, I have not forgotten nor will I abandon them. The Heal Japan benefit EP is my “shovel” --the one thing I knew to do to help; something that would have the potential to do more for my investment of time and money than were I to get myself to Japan and literally grab a shovel.

I did this because I believe I am not alone in how I feel about this; I just need to find you guys and ask you to jump on board with me! There is strength in numbers, so grab YOUR shovel, however small, and JOIN ME!

I've done most of the work to make it as simple -and affordable- as possible for you. So now all YOU have to do to help restore Japan is:

* buy the EP (for less than the price of your daily name brand latte ...or just buy the single for even less --it all helps!)

Michele Shigoka: Heal Japan: A Music Benefit
also available on


* help us spread the word through your social media and web presences!

We're at:

twitter: 311healjapan
Heal3.11Japan on Facebook
YouTube: post & share the music video! get on our email list (you get to download the single for free as a thank you for signing up ;) & post links to us!

Roll up your sleeves and join us! Because together, we can heal japan!

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