CAMP HANSEN, Japan --
CAMP HANSEN, Japan— Hundreds of people crowded around the stage as artists Awich, Sister Soul and Shaggy performed live throughout the night during a free concert July 22 aboard Camp Hansen.
The open gate event gave the military and local community a chance to bond through good music and good food.
Akiko Urasaki, commonly known by her stage name Awich which is short for “Asia Wish Child,” is a popular singer born in Okinawa, Japan, who writes and performs in Japanese and English.
Music helps break the language barrier and pull the local and military community together, according to Awich.
“When I put things into music instead of just talking to someone, it’s more easily understood,” said Awich. “It sinks in. That is the magic of music. Music, just like other forms of art, allows people to interpret messages in their own way. So if I talk to you directly through words, it is what it is. But when you speak through song you can show someone your world, make them see what you see.”
Concerts are so popular because music is a universal language, according to former Marine, Orville Richard Burrell, better known as the Jamaican-American reggae fusion singer and DJ, Shaggy.
“There are only seven words in music: Do, re, me, fah, so, la, te, do,” said Shaggy. “Those words speak internationally. They speak to everyone.”
Despite the sweltering heat, the crowd danced, sang and waved their arms to the beat of the music.
“Anything to do with music will raise morale,” said Shaggy, “When you perform music and listen to music, it is what I like to call a mood adjuster. It is always a pleasure to work with the military community I’ve done it before and will do it again. It is always a yes in my book.”