Why We Stopped Touring USA – The Road To Nabeshima 2

Here is The Road To Nabeshima episode2.

This time we look back on our band history and our touring experience in USA.

I hope I’m not sounding too negative, because I’m very thankful for Hassy&Jake, the bassist and the drummer who left the band in March 2018.



Road To Nabeshima vol.2

“Why we stopped touring in USA”


Hi, this is Tak from Imari Tones, Japanese Christian metal band.

Like I told you in the previous video,
Hassy, our bassist and Jake, our drummer,
they left the band in March 2018.

Now I have to start the band again in a new form.


But before that, I want to explain the reason, why they had to leave the band.

I met Hassy, back in 2007 and that’s when he joined the band.
Soon after that, for some reasons I became a Christian and we became a Christian band.

The drummer back then quit the band because he didn’t like the Christian stuff.
And, in 2008, Jake joined the band.

Hassy and Jake were friends from their previous band. So they knew each other already.


After that, we started gigging, calling ourselves “The First Christian Heavy Metal Band from Japan”.

We toured in the United States for 4 years in a row.
We also toured in Japan 4 years in a row WITH American bands,
and we made so much music, many albums.

That was,
“Victory in Christ”, “Japan Metal Jesus”, “Heroes EP”, “Revive The World”, “Jesus Wind” and “Overture”.

5 albums and 1 ep.


But that was not always easy.

Especially, these recent 5years were very tough.

I’m going to tell you why it was so tough.


Going back to 2011.
We were on tour. Our 3rd tour in the United States.

We played an event called The Objective in Nashville Tennessee and we played some great shows there.

We played a venue called Rocketown and we rocked hard and raised the roof.
We received the great response from music industry people there.

However, it was already 2010s (two thousand tens)
Music business was not as big as 1980s.
It was not that easy to get a chance, especially for a Japanese band like us.

Nevertheless, it was a great opportunity for us.

So next year, in 2012, we joined The Extreme Tour and toured with them.

The Extreme Tour is, a grass roots style Christian music tour in the United States. They have been around, for more than 20 years now.

We joined the tour because they were the people we met in Nashville TN and they asked us to tour together.


So that’s what we did and that was our 4th touring experience in the United States.
We rocked hard, we played some great shows and sold many many CDs.
That was a great experience both musically and spiritually.
and Our Faith in God had never been stronger.

I guess, probably, those touring experience in 2011 and 2012, that was one of the highlights in our band history.


and naturally, what we hoped for was, more tour in USA and look for more chances.
Touring more and reaching for success in USA.

That was our logical next step. We needed to do that in order to be successful. 
Especially when you are a Christian band and you have so little chance in Japanese domestic market.


But after all, we didn’t do that.

We did not tour in USA any more.



That was because, some of our band members were not ready.
I’m not going to say who, but some of the band members, sorry to say this, but not serious enough about music.

They didn’t want to take any more risk to play music.
Risk, that is, risk in life.
Social and financial risk.

It is quite understandable because, being in a band is a very hard thing in Japan.


You can’t do a band alone. Because rock band is a team thing.

So we were not able to take any more chance in USA.
We were not able to reach for bigger success.

Some of you may have wondered, why we hadn’t visited USA or played a show outside of Japan since 2012.
But this is the reason. This is the answer.
Our band members didn’t want to tour overseas.
Unfortunately they were not passionate enough about playing music.


But don’t criticize them. I don’t want to sound negative.

Hassy and Jake, I am very thankful and grateful for them.
We kept making music together for 10 years.
That was possible because we were good friends. We still are.

So I say thank you to them for playing music together with me for such a long time.


So, now it was apparent we were not going to tour overseas.
We had lost the opportunities to reach for success.

However, we, didn’t consider it as a bad thing.
Instead we decided to take it for better and do positive things.

That was, playing music in Japan.
and getting together with Japanese friends.
Playing together with other Christian bands in Japan.

We met some great Japanese Christian musicians.
and that was a great thing.
Because we had a huge passion about our country Japan.

Ultimately, our goal was always, to convey God’s Love to Japanese people.
To change our country. To change the spiritual situation in Japan.
That means, salvation for Japanese people.

We were determined to play our music to spread Jesus’ Love in Japan.
and that was what we did in the last 5 years.

and let me say this: It was totally worth it.


Now this is already getting too long.
So I’m going to tell you about that in next video.

Thank you very much.
Keep on rocking for Jesus.
God bless you all.

Tone / Imari Tones


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