Ebisubashi is a central bridge and major attraction in the heart of Dotonbori. We crossed this bridge everyday during our stay in Osaka. Each time there was something new to experience. From here you can access all the restaurants in the area. Don Quijote is about one minute away and the iconic Glico Man looms over everything. In the evening this bridge is known to be a pick-up place where young people rendezvous. Nearby are the Love hotels, but that is a different story. During the day you will run into typical Osakaites scurrying from one shop to the next. You might also find street performers testing out their material. Ron Mizutani showed us a video he and Greg Lau took of a dance troupe practicing their moves on the Ebisubashi crowd. Unfortunately that footage didn't get into the video segments that were run on KHON about Osaka and Kyoto. On this our last day in Osaka, we happened on a street performance by a musician named Aimi. I find these chance meetings most memorable, nothing planned, pure serendipity. She happen to be playing what was to be her last song of the afternoon. With iPhone in hand, this is what I captured. I love her passion and expressiveness. Who knows, she might be the next big J-pop star. Regardless, it was well worth the experience.
With the apparent demise of Muxtape, people are rediscovering Blip.FM or in my case discovering it for the first time. Where Muxtape allowed you to upload your mp3s and share it with others, Blip.FM takes it much further. In Blip.FM you can add favorite DJs and as they add music to their playlist it will show up on your Blip homepage. Also with Blip.FM you can select a song to play by answering the question "What are you listening to?" and Blip.FM will go out and find, based on what others have made available, a match. You can't download music from Blip.FM but I am sure someone has written a hack to do the job. Perhaps as a way to appease the RIAA, Blip.FM provides a "Buy This MP3" button that pushes you to Amazon.com. It'll be interesting to see whether or not the RIAA will put the clamp down on Blip.FM like they did with Muxtape. I suppose it will depend on where all these MP3 uploads are being stored and whether the RIAA sees Blip.FM cutting into the royalties of copyrights holders. I hope Blip.FM survives the analysis, but in the meantime enjoy it while you can.