Was it Neil Young, who once said that rock and roll would never die? He was right. When I visited Yoyogi Park in 2018, it was still very much alive and kicking. It might exist in a niche market these days, but it still draws a good crowd. Every Sunday afternoon, as long as the weather is good, rockabilly groups at Yoyogi Park put on a great show. Best of all, they are great for photos.
Watching the dancers is an excellent way to pass some time. These people, guys and girls, are into the lifestyle. They have the right jeans, jackets, shoes, hairstyles, and attitude.
When the music starts up, the members form a circle. They make their best moves and whip combs out of pockets to style any stray hairs back into place. Everyone has “the strut.” They love to strut.
It was all entertaining. The group, the Strangers, put on an outstanding show. They, and another, the Lebels, have been dancing rockabilly at the entrance to Yoyogi Park for at least thirty years. If I’m wrong about the time, please let me know. Still, I vaguely remember seeing them in the early 1990s when a girlfriend took me to Harajuku.
The dancers are a very diverse group. Some seem to be in their late teens, a few in their twenties, thirties, and forties. A couple might be in their fifties or even sixties. They might be getting old, but they aren’t slowing down. The Strangers have the moves and always look cool.
And they still pull a good crowd. As the group dances in front of the park entrance, a lot of people walk past them. Most stop to have a look and take a few pictures. Some move on after they’ve checked the rockabillies out, but a lot stay and enjoy the fun.
If you are ever free on a Sunday and in the Harajuku area, go and see some rockabilly at Yoyogi Park. It’s only a short walk from the station and Meiji Shrine. Have a look at these guys because rockabilly is still cool. Questions and comments can be left below.