It was the strangest sight I've seen in a long time, more of a dream than reality. I was just sitting there minding my own business as I waited for Em, my wife, to appear. There I was patiently sipping on a cup of espresso at an alfresco cafe tucked away in a quiet corner of a quaint little terracotta village dubbed La Cittadella. This Mediterranean marvel built smack dab in the middle of Kawasaki City, a blue collar town at the heart of one of Japan's major industrial belts, is one of my favorite haunts.
It was there that I noticed something that seemed a little out of the ordinary. All of a sudden a legion of suit-clad middle aged men, every Jack one of them with hair down to their shoulders, started to spill out across the piazza where a DJ was pumping out some hip-swaying Latin rhythms under the shade of a Campari umbrella.
Never in my life had I seen such a mysterious sea of humanity. Then I spied the source from which they flowed. They were all pouring out of the doors of Club Citta where on that particular night was playing the legendary British progressive rock group, Barclay James Harvest in their first-ever appearance on the shores of this island nation. The group had finally arrived in that place where a rock star's shine never diminishes, no matter how much it may fade elsewhere. They had come to Japan and, for at least one ardent fan (Em) who had waited decades for this moment, it was a dream come true.
Barclay James Harvest playing Child of the Universe
For more on the meaning of rock fans in Japan see: The Story of Anvil (movie trailer)