Shonen Knife

2 men kissing, Tennis and Shortbread... KW meet Shonen Knife!


Give us an introduction into the world of Shonen Knife…

I'm Naoko and I play lead guitar and vocals. The meaning of Shonen Knife is, well Shonen means boy and knife is... knife. Its an old word for Pen knife. The word boy has a very cute meaning and knife has danger.

I'm Ritsuko I play bass and backing vocals.

I'm Emi... I play drums... and backing vocals.


How has supporting well-known bands in the past helped you develop yourselves and the band?

Naoko: Especially when we toured with Nirvana in 1991 on their UK tour, because it was our first long tour, the members of Nirvana helped us a lot, especially with our English.


How do you find the fans in the UK?

Naoko: Shonen knife fans in the UK are very friendly and good people, I'm very surprised that people sing our songs in the UK.


Have the numerous member changes affected the message of Shonen Knife?

Naoko: The basis of Shonen Knife is always the same. We always have the same roots. Especially Ritsuko and Emi already knew Shonen Knife so they already understood the message of the band.


When you were younger, what musicians would you listen to?

Emi: The Beatles...

Ritsuko: The Beatles also.

Naoko: When we were in Liverpool, we went to The Beatles Museum. But I like 70's British music, like The Jam, The Ramones and also Judas Priest.


Tell us some strange things that have happened to you on your tours…

Naoko: In Spain, In Valencia, Our driver came to pick us up from the airport and it took 2 hours to make a 30 minute journey to the hotel. Then from the hotel to our venue it took an hour to do a 10 minute journey. Then we had a driver, who drank beer whilst he was driving. So we fired him.

Emi: In front of Ritsuko, there are always two men who stand directly in front of her in the shows. And they start kissing.


How would you like to spend a free day in the UK?

Emi: I want to go shopping in the UK! I have been to Tesco! My first time eating shortbread- it was 13 pence! It was really good so I bought lots of it.

Ritsuko: I would like to go to Buckingham Palace. I want to see the men with the big hats!

Naoko: I would like to go see tennis, like Wimbledon.


What do you like to fill your time with when you’re not doing Shonen Knife?

Naoko: I play tennis twice a week when we don't have a tour to do.

Ritsuko: I like to read comics, like Manga.

Emi: I love to eat.


Have you got any plans for the future?

Naoko: In July we have a Japan tour, and we look to continue as long as we can.


Do you have any special message for your UK fans?

Naoko: Please listen to our latest album release "Supergroup", keep listening to our music and when we come back to the UK, come to see us also