We’ve come to the point when our decadent Western tastes have become so jaded that we are forced to look for sweeter and more sugary morsels wherever we can find them….

– Francis Henville, “J-Pop Will Eat Itself” Stylus Magazine


Make Believe Melodies is a blog devoted to discovering and sharing the various sounds of Japan. I am a recently Japan-relocated music nerd who knows next to nothing about music from this country outside of the indie-approved staples (Boredomes, Cornelius, Shonen Knife) and a handful of J-Pop songs a friend once gave me.

This blog wouldn’t exist without Francis Henville and Teresa Nieman’s excellent “J-Pop Will Eat Itself” feature in the great (and sadly defunct) Stylus Magazine. That series aimed at diving into the intimidating world of Japanese Pop music blind and highlighting some of the better musical finds. It was a marvelous series, and responsible for peaking my interest in Japanese music.

I hope to find great Japanese music from every genre and share it with other music fans. Thank you for reading!

Questions? Comments? Straight-up hate? Want to rep a band? Think there is a show or scene I should check out? Send me an e-mail at patrickstmichel@gmail.com

Feel free to follow us on Twitter too, if you are into that sort of thing.


Make Believe Melodie’s banner image was drawn by Jessica Nguyen. To see more of her art, please go here.

5 responses to “About

  1. Damn you’re an excellent writer, now that I read more of your posts. If you like the Perfume sound, I recommend Aira Mitsuki, the unfortunately too-plain-to-be-mainstream lady behind this lovely song, China Discotica. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fcsQFUPv9KY

    Also, her career is going nowhere, but Rurutia is a damn fine musician who writes disturbing/beautiful songs. Please check her out and keep up your lovely blog!

  2. Really enjoying your blog! It’s become routine for me to check it out, and I’ve gotten into quite a few bands from here. 🙂

  3. Hello

    I am also an Japan-o-phile, got some japanese ink, did judo and karate when I was younger but dismissed the music as it wasn’t what i thought music was about. Your blog has changed my opinion and can’t wait to check out more stuff.

    Keep posting you have a really good writing style.


  4. Is there another way, i can keep updated with your articles? Such as facebook? or subscription to your blog? You do some great stuff here!

  5. I can’t say I’m a musician and I don’t really know any music theory though I do believe I have a “good ear” in music, but I always wanted to write songs, but every time I tried, I just couldn’t get something good.
    Lately, I very often come up with great melodies that build up to a whole song but ONLY right before I fall asleep, so I am very very tired and I just can’t get up and record it somewhere or something and of course, the next morning I have completely forgotten it.
    It’s really frustrating and I don’t know what to do! Does it mean that I have the ability to write such songs even when I’m not so sleepy?

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