Japanese Rapper SKY-HI Captivates L.A. Crowd in First U.S. Performance

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Courtesy of Billboard Japan
SKY-HI

SKY-HI is currently on the road performing 25 shows in 24 cities for his SKY-HI Round a Ground 2017 Tour that kicked off Oct. 11. The trek includes his first solo concerts abroad in Shanghai, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Los Angeles, New York, Paris and London. The Japanese rapper and singer is currently in the U.S. and played at the Troubadour in L.A. on Sunday (Nov. 12).

He opened his set with the pop-rap number "Reincarnation" and hyped up the crowd with "No Chill," "Purple Haze" and other solo rap tracks. He then invited his team of dancers onstage for some impressive choreography, and got the audience dancing with "Blame It On Me," "Stray Cat." and a three-song medley. When he's not performing solo, SKY-HI is a member of the dance-vocal group <a href="/music/AAA">AAA</a>, where he goes by his real name, Mitsuhiro Hidaka.

He briefly addressed the crowd in English before launching into "Bitter Dream," a song created through a studio session in L.A., then performed the title song off his latest album, <a href="/articles/news/international/7998769/japan-sky-hi-international-tour-marble-video-watch">Marble</a>, which was released prior to the tour to serve as a primer of his songs.

"I perform different styles of music. You might like it or you might not, but I'll leave you with everything I'm capable of right now, so I hope you'll hear me out," the 30-year-old performer said before singing emotional and heartfelt piano renditions of "Iris Light" and "Luce."

He then brought back his dancers and broke into the world tour version of his familiar dance skit routine for "Sentence." The crowd stayed upbeat and captivated by his performance as he tore through the rest of the setlist, including his recent collab "Gemstone" with guitarist <a href="/music/MIYAVI">MIYAVI</a> and fan favorites such as "Double Down," "Nanairo Holiday" and "Smile Drop." The audience continued to cheer until he returned for an encore, and he signed off his first U.S. concert with the buoyant love song "Ai Bloom," his solo debut single.

SKY-HI will make a stop in New York on Wednesday (Nov. 15) and go on to perform in Paris and London before returning to Japan for the rest of the tour, which wraps up in Tokyo on his birthday, Dec. 12.


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