The Japanese music market is very unique and can be difficult to penetrate, but it has the potential to reward you greatly once you are able to succeed. We’re very happy to welcome someone who has all the potential and talent to make it big in Japan.
Enter: Alex York. Born and raised in a New York, Alex is a Pop-Rock independent singer and songwriter with a passion for Japanese culture and a devoted cross-cultural fan-base to boot. He has performed at CMJ Music Marathon and The Bamboozle, and his live shows are growing so rapidly that they have almost become large theatre events. Most recently, Alex held a concert at the J-Cation Festival in New York that celebrates the Cherry Blossom season in Japan. His two latest singles “American Boy” and “Change” were released in August 1st on Delicious Media.
So how is The Orchard making it happen for Alex?
“Think global, act local” is a rule we like to follow when it comes to international market outreach. Alex definitely makes the job easier with his genuine love for the Japanese culture and his devoted interaction with his fans: with 83,273 likes on Facebook and 84,160 followers on Twitter (and counting!), Alex has a great audience to interact with and he does it well — in English and Japanese!
In addition to working with Alex and his strong fanbase, we also pushed on the retail side. Indeed, The Orchard delivers to Japanese retailers from the largest digital music stores in the country like iTunes and Amazon, to Music Unlimited, the first music streaming service available in Japan. Furthermore, with the mobile market being a big priority in Japan, we made sure to deliver ringtones and “Chaku-Uta Full” (full track ringtones) of both Alex York’s singles to as many mobile outlets as we could.
Another key factor was our new partnership with Space Shower/BounDEE. They deliver albums, singles, ringtones and truetones to over 50 digital music accounts including Recochoku (the largest music service in Japan), music.jp, dwango.jp, Joysound, mora.jp and Docomo mobile carrier “d market.” Again, we made sure they delivered both singles.
So what results did we see?
“American Boy” and “Change” immediately debuted at #1 and #2 Bestsellers in Pop on the Amazon Japan website, and charted at #8 (“American Boy”) and #19 (“Change”) on the iTunes Japan Pop Songs Chart upon release on August 1. What’s more, both singles are still charting quite well as of writing this post.
Alex is currently in the process of completing his second full length album, highly anticipated by his fans both in the U.S. and in Japan, as well as other parts of the world. In the meantime, check out his video for “Change,” which he dedicated to Japan’s recovery following the earthquake.
Thanks to Catonia Whalen for her contributions to this post.