Japan has funk, even more than you might expect. For 23 years, Osaka Monaurail has been the guardian of soul and funk in the land of the rising sun. When frontman Nakata heard Ray Charles in a commercial, he caught the soul bug and started a university band, which he named after the funk classic The J.B.’s Monaurail. It took almost fifteen years for Europe to get acquainted with the Japanese funk machine, and some years later it was the turn of the United States. Nakata sings and dances across the stage like a true James Brown. Behind him are eight musicians playing even more tightly than their impeccable suits fit their bodies. Osaka Monaurail’s mission is as clear as it is effective: playing super heavy funk. They do so incredibly well; so well that Marva Whitney, member of the James Brown revue in the sixties, had her own album produced by the band.