click links in text for more info


Roppongi is a district of Minato, Japan, famous for the affluent Roppongi Hills development area and popular night club scene. A few foreign embassies are located near Roppongi, the night life is popular with locals and foreigners alike, it is in south of Akasaka and north of Azabu. The name "Roppongi", which appears to have been coined around 1660 means "six trees". Six old and large zelkova trees used to mark the area. Another legend has it that the name comes from the fact that six daimyōs lived nearby during the Edo period, each with the kanji character for "tree" or a kind of tree in their names. Roppongi was not extensively populated until after the Meiji Restoration, although the area was trafficked for centuries and served as the site of the cremation of Shōgun Tokugawa Hidetada's wife in 1626. In 1890, the Third Imperial Guard of the Imperial Japanese Army was moved to a site near Roppongi; the influx of soldiers led to the area's rise as a nightlife district interrupted by the Great Kanto earthquake which flattened the area in 1923.

Roppongi was administratively part of Azabu Ward from 1878 to 1947. After World War II, during which the area was again destroyed, this time by aerial bombing raids, the United States Army and Allied government officials occupied several facilities in the area, beginning Roppongi's reputation as a neighborhood with large numbers of non-Japanese. Several large US military installations were located in the nearby area, with Hardy Barracks the most significant. Surrounding the military installations were many Japanese-owned restaurants, pool halls and brothels which catered to US military personnel but were often frequented by Japanese customers. Starting in the late 1960s, Roppongi became popular among Japanese people and foreigners alike for its disco scene, which attracted many of Tokyo's entertainment elites. Contributing to the international scene was the location of several foreign embassies and foreign corporate offices in the Roppongi area. However, many dance clubs shut down in the recession following the market crash of 1989.

The Roppongi area received a major economic boost in 2002–2003 when the Izumi Garden Tower and the Roppongi Hills high-rise complexes were completed. These projects brought high-end condominium space to Roppongi for the first time; the Tokyo Midtown project in neighbouring Akasaka, completed in 2006, includes the first Tokyo Ritz-Carlton Hotel, continued this trend. The area features numerous bars, strip clubs, hostess clubs and other forms of entertainment. Among the expatriate community, the area tends to be favored by business people and off-duty US military personnel. Overall, the neighborhood caters to a younger crowd. Clubs can range from large, multi-level establishments, to smaller one-room clubs located in upper levels of buildings. In more recent times some of the larger venues with known Yakuza connections have closed. Around Roppongi crossing are a number of clubs which feature foreign performers. There are a number of both foreign- and Japanese-operated bars catering to different crowds.

Roppongi has enjoyed a growing reputation for its organized events such as art festivals and billiard tournaments, pub crawls, robot exhibitions, beauty pageants, so on. Restaurants in Roppongi vary from upscale Japanese fare to popular international restaurants. In the past, Roppongi had a reputation as an area with high Yakuza presence, whether as customers at Roppongi establishments, conducting business, or managing or owning clubs and bars in the area. Although still exerting some influence in Roppongi, in recent times they appear to have shifted much of their presence to other districts in the Tokyo area. In 2006, Nigerian immigrants to Japan began opening a number of bars and nightclubs in the area, following an earlier group of innovators, in business in Roppongi for many years; the Nigerians were noted for using high-pressure tactics to draw customers to their bars. In 2009 and 2010 a series of drink-spiking incidents, in which customers reported being drugged and robbed, were linked to Nigerian-owned bars.

The incidents resulted in the United States embassy in Japan warning US citizens to avoid certain bars and clubs in Roppongi. An investigation by The Japan Times in July 2011 found that though drink spiking occurred, most of the incidents did not involve criminal activity. Many customers claimed unusually severe hangovers after nights spent in Nigerian-run establishments. Similar complaints are made about non-Nigerian bars in Roppongi that offer unlimited drink packages and lace drinks with hard liquor to minimize customer consumption and increase profit. Mori Building Company and The Pokémon Company have their headquarters in the Roppongi Hills Mori Tower. Companies based in Roppongi include: Ferrari Japan Genco J-Wave Lenovo Japan Google Japan TV Asahi Being Inc. Wrestling New Classic Dogma NJPW World Roppongi Station Roppongi-itchōme Station Nogizaka Station Public elementary and middle schools are operated by the Minato City Board of Education. Roppongi Junior High School is located in Roppongi.

Public high schools are operated by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Board of Education. Roppongi High School is located in Roppongi. Toyo Eiwa Jog

Kanagawa 2nd district

Kanagawa 2nd district is a single-member constituency of the House of Representatives, the lower house of the national Diet of Japan. It is located in eastern Kanagawa Prefecture and consists of Yokohama city's Nishi, Minami and Kōnan wards; as of 2012, 425,997 eligible voters were registered in the district giving it, like many urban districts, a vote weight well below the national average and more than twice as many voters as the highest vote weight district Kōchi 3. Before the electoral reform of the 1990s the area had been split between the four-member 1st district and the five-member 4th district; the 2nd district's only representative since the electoral reform has been Liberal Democrat Yoshihide Suga, a former member of the Yokohama city council who entered the Diet as a newcomer in 1996. He was able to beat one of the incumbents for the pre-reform 4th district. In subsequent elections he defended the seat against Democrats Akira Kazuya Miura. Suga was Internal Affairs Minister in the First Abe cabinet and Chief Cabinet Secretary in the Second Abe Cabinet

Centerville, North Carolina

Centerville is a census-designated place in the rural northeastern corner of Franklin County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 89 at the 2010 census, a loss of 10 persons from the previous count of 99 at the 2000 census, it was an incorporated town from 1965 to 2017. There is no post office in Centerville, thus no zip code. Centerville is centered on "the crossroads", the intersection of NC-561 and NC-58, consists of two small old-fashioned country stores, one each on two of that intersection's four corners. Two sell gasoline, one of those sells diesel and kerosene. All two sell basic general store items, such as toilet paper, household cleaning products and boxed food, etc. as well as common convenience store items such as sodas, snack foods, beer, etc. There's a Dollar General, a muffler shop and a medical clinic. Centerville has its own church, volunteer fire department. There is no police department, so Centerville—like the surrounding unincorporated area—is patrolled by the Franklin County Sheriff's Office.

As is common in the rural stretches of eastern North Carolina, many of the houses in and around Centerville are quite old and in poor states of repair, agriculture is the main use of land. Tobacco, soybeans and hay are the main crops. Centerville includes many antique buildings from its heyday, including the now-defunct Serepta Church, a former Methodist church located at the intersection of NC-561 and Centerville-Laurel Mill Road. Perry School and Vine Hill are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Centerville was established around 1882 and named for its central location between the towns of Louisburg and Littleton, it was incorporated in 1965, four years after the dissolution of the nearby town of Wood in 1961. Centerville is located at 36°11′6″N 78°6′41″W. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 0.3 square miles, all of it land. As of the census of 2010, there were 89 people residing in what was a town; the racial makeup of the town was 93% White, 3.5% Black, 3.5% other.

On February 22, 2017, a bill was filed in the North Carolina General Assembly towards needed legislative approval for dissolution of the Town of Centerville back into Franklin County. The Centerville Town Council voted unanimously in their January meeting to dissolve the town charter due to lack of growth and financial issues for continuing on as a municipality; when the bill is passed, the town will have 30 days to liquidate its assets. Under the legislation, any remaining money would be given to Centerville Fire Department. Senate Bill 122, regarding the dissolution of the Town of Centerville, was ratified by the North Carolina General Assembly on June 22, 2017; the town dissolved on July 22, 2017. William S. Powell, The North Carolina Gazetteer: A Dictionary of Tar Heel Places, 1968, The University of North Carolina Press at Chapel Hill, ISBN 0-8078-1247-1, Library of Congress Catalog Card #28-25916, page 98. Retrieved Jan. 15, 2015

Ch√Ęteau du Tournel

The Château du Tournel is a ruined feudal castle in the commune of Saint-Julien-du-Tournel in the Lozère département of France. A former seat of the Barons of Tournel, one of the eight baronies of Gévaudan, it was destroyed during the French Wars of Religion by Huguenot troops under Matthieu Merle; the castle is sited on a rocky outcrop. It is in a strategic position. From its towers, one can see the highest point in the region. Before the 13th century, the Tournel family regarded, it was in this period. At the time, the barony had split into five châtelains: Tournel, Montialoux and Montfort; the Château du Tournel was thus the main and central of their possessions which extended from Mont Lozère to Mende along the valley of the Lot, as well as in the Valdonnez. The fortifications of the Château de Chapieu were consolidated by Bishop Aldebert III du Tournel, son of Odilon-Guérin I, baron of Tournel, it seems that it was at Chapieu that the family was established before the 13th century, since one can see the name of Capio in the name of the 12th century trobairitz Iseut de Capio.

However, around 1307, the family decided to move away from the castle, preferring the comfort of the Château du Boy in the Valdonnez. The site was reputed to be impenetrable, was thus a important possession for the Tournels during the various wars and disputes that interrupted life in medieval Gévaudan. However, at the start of the Hundred Years' War, the family thought more of fortifying their castle at Boy than of returning to Tournel; the various wars of religion followed, during which the castle was destroyed for the first time around 1500. It underwent the torments of Matthieu Merle's Hugoenot troops, but was liberated with the arrival of the baron from Boy, it was completely abandoned, without being restored. It has, been maintained since the 20th century and visitors can follow an explanatory trail. At the time that it was inhabited, it was necessary to pass through seven entrances before being able to penetrate into the castle. Certain passages between gateways were close to the cliff which dominates the Lot, making it well-defended site.

The castle was composed of six towers. The castle appeared on the record sleeve of Chant des Partisans, released by Yves Montand in 1955 ·; the castle can be seen in the 2005 film Saint-Jacques... La Mecque, directed by Coline Serreau; the first series of the television drama Hero Corp was set in the Lozère département. The Château du Tournel was used as the residence of The Lord. List of castles in France Ministry of Culture photos of St-Julien-du-Tournel, including several with details of the castle

Nee (Perfume song)

"Nee" is the seventeenth single released by Japanese girl group Perfume. "Nee" is used in a tie-in campaign with Japanese apparel brand Natural Beauty Basic. The full version of "Nee" was aired on Perfume's radio program Perfume Locks on 21 October 2010; the single was released on November 2010 in Japan. "Nee" is being used as the theme song for Natural Beauty Basic, like previous single "Natural ni koishite" was used. Like "Natural ni koishite", the video for "Nee" featured outfits created by the clothing line that were made available on the website; the music video features the girls dancing on a hexagonal platform, surrounded by winter scenery. At first, each member of Perfume is shown individually and, through the use of CG, appears on screen three times dancing. In the second half, all three members are shown together, with each part of their choreography coming together to create an elaborate dance performance; these scenes are interspersed with Perfume posing against and wandering through a white set of white cutouts of trees, street signs and buildings.

The video, directed by Kodama Yuichi, was the basis for four commercials for Natural Beauty Basic. Much like the commercials for "Natural ni koishite", one commercial was made for each member of Perfume dancing with copies of themselves, while the final version is a static shot showing the group choreography. All tracks are written by Yasutaka Nakata. Official Site Tokuma Japan Communications' Perfume Site

The Notorious Byrd Brothers

The Notorious Byrd Brothers is the fifth album by the American rock band the Byrds, was released in January 1968, on Columbia Records. The album represents the pinnacle of the Byrds' late-60's musical experimentation, with the band blending together elements of psychedelia, folk rock, electronic music, baroque pop, jazz. With producer Gary Usher, they made extensive use of a number of studio effects and production techniques, including phasing and spatial panning; the Byrds introduced the sound of the pedal steel guitar and the Moog modular synthesizer into their music, making it one of the first LP releases on which the Moog appears. Recording sessions for The Notorious Byrd Brothers took place throughout the latter half of 1967 and were fraught with tension, resulting in the loss of two members of the band. Rhythm guitarist David Crosby was fired in October 1967 and drummer Michael Clarke left the band midway through recording, returning before being dismissed after completion of the album.

Additionally, original band member Gene Clark, who had left the group in early 1966, rejoined for three weeks during the making of the album, before leaving again. Author Ric Menck has commented that in spite of these changes in personnel and the conflict surrounding its creation, The Notorious Byrd Brothers is the band's most cohesive and ethereal-sounding album statement; the Notorious Byrd Brothers reached number 47 on the Billboard Top LPs chart and number 12 on the UK Album Chart. A cover of the Gerry Goffin and Carole King song "Goin' Back" was released in October 1967 as the lead single from the album to mild chart success. Although The Notorious Byrd Brothers was critically praised at the time of its release, it was only moderately successful commercially in the United States; the album came to be regarded as one of the Byrds' best album releases, as well as their most experimental and progressive. Byrds expert Tim Connors has commented; the recording of The Notorious Byrd Brothers, during the latter half of 1967, was marked by severe internal dissolution and acrimony.

The Byrds began the recording sessions as a four-piece band, consisting of Roger McGuinn, David Crosby, Chris Hillman, Michael Clarke—the same line-up that had recorded their two previous albums. By the time of the album's release, only McGuinn and Hillman remained in the group; the first line-up change occurred when drummer Michael Clarke quit the group over disputes with Crosby and the other band members over his playing ability and his apparent dissatisfaction with the material the three songwriting members of the band were providing. He was replaced temporarily by noted session drummers Jim Hal Blaine. David Crosby was fired by McGuinn and Hillman and replaced by a former member of the Byrds, Gene Clark, who stayed on board for just three weeks before leaving again. Prior to Gene Clark rejoining the band, Michael Clarke had returned from his self-imposed exile, only to be informed by McGuinn and Hillman that he was once again an ex-Byrd after the album was completed. Amid so many changes in band personnel, McGuinn and Hillman needed to rely upon outside musicians to complete the album.

Among these hired musicians was Clarence White, who had played on the group's previous LP. His contributions to this and the Byrds' Younger Than Yesterday and Sweetheart of the Rodeo albums, along with his friendship with Hillman led to his being hired as a full-time member of the band. David Crosby was fired by McGuinn and Hillman in October 1967, as a result of friction arising from, among other things, Crosby's displeasure at the band's wish to record the Goffin–King composition "Goin' Back". Crosby felt that recording the song was a step backwards artistically when the band contained three active songwriters. Another factor that contributed to Crosby's dismissal was his controversial song "Triad", a risqué composition about a ménage à trois, in direct competition with "Goin' Back" for a place on the album, he gave the tune to Jefferson Airplane, who included a version of the song on their 1968 album, Crown of Creation. Although the Byrds did record "Triad", the song's daring subject matter compelled McGuinn and Hillman to prevent it from being released at the time.

The track surfaced on the band's 1987 archival compilation album, Never Before, was added to The Notorious Byrd Brothers as a bonus track on the 1997 Columbia/Legacy reissue. Crosby had annoyed the other members of the Byrds during their performance at the Monterey Pop Festival when he gave lengthy in-between-song speeches on a number of controversial subjects, including the JFK assassination and the benefits of giving LSD to "all the statesmen and politicians in the world." He further irritated his bandmates at Monterey by performing with rival group Buffalo Springfield, filling in for ex-member Neil Young. His stock within the band deteriorated still further following the commercial failure of his song "Lady Friend", when it was released as the A-side of a Byrds' single in July 1967, his absence from many of the recording sessions for The Notorious Byrd Brothers represented the final straw for McGuinn and Hillman, Crosby would soon find himself an ex-Byrd, with a handsome severance package and time to associate with his new musical partner, Stephen Stills.

It has been suggested that the horse on the cover of the album was unkindly intended to represent Crosby, although this has been denied by both McGuinn and Hillman. Much to Crosby's chagrin, McGuinn and Hillman reworked his unfinished song "Draft Morning" following his departure and included it in the final running order for the album, awarding themselves a co-writing credit in the process. I