Yongen is Chieko and Toshio Kamei, a songwriting and production team formed in the Far East, and based in the London's East End. Together, they make a uniquely sophisticated dream pop with a big, but intensely graceful sound.
In his native Japan, Toshio Kamei is known as a composer who wrote numerous best selling songs (including two chart toppers) for various artists. Starting his career in music as a violinist, he has worked extensively as a vocalist, composer, guitarist, and violinist. His first solo album was Body which was released from Sony Japan, and he followed this up with a release as part of the group known as Cancamay.
Chieko started her working life in the world of film and has produced numerous documentaries and dramas, as a screenplay for a drama series based on the life of a legendary Japanese violinist. Her works have collected prizes in Japan, such as with the Galaxy award, ACC award and Dentsu award.
Floating World was the first self-produced Yongen album which was released from their own label, Igi, in the UK. Their second album, Moonrise was initially a Japanese release, with the "Sunflower" track featured in the Shiseido Ville Franche TV campaign. In 2002, they produced the debut album Relationship for Taro, which was released from Polystar Japan in 2003.
The band's name comes from the Japenese word for the fourth string, which is the warmest, strongest string on a violin. Chieko and Toshio chose the name when they realized one day how each of their lives had been shaped the violin and those who play it.
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