Who are the Kaizokudan?
With origins going as far back as 1999, the Karaoke Kaizokudan was formally constituted on April 28, 2004. We are a veteran group of convention staff who run karaoke events at several anime conventions in California, including Animation On Display (AOD), FanimeCon, Anime Expo, and Pacific Media Expo. In the past, we have also run karaoke at Anime Destiny, RECCACon, Kumoricon, Anime Vegas, GenCon SoCal, and Tales of Anime. In addition to contests and open mic singing, we have also recently begun to branch out into educational aspects, such as hosting convention panels on Japanese music.
Our song library currently consists of over 7,000 anime, j-rock, j-pop, and video game related songs, with lyrics for just about all of them and timed lyrics for selected popular songs. We also offer a standard American karaoke database (what you’d typically see at a karaoke bar or lounge) at selected events.
Our philosophy is simple – provide a well-organized, fun, and enjoyable Karaoke room for convention attendees to express themselves through music and in doing so, support the community by promoting the enjoyment of anime and japanese popular music and bringing together anime/japanese music fans. One of our greatest rewards is seeing the friendships and sense of community that has developed over the years at our events.
What does the name mean?
“Kaizoku” (海賊) is Japanese for “pirate”, and “-dan” (団) is the modifier for “group”. So a loose translation would be “Karaoke Pirate Group”. Official credit goes to our friend and supporter Katie for coming up with this name.
Why the pirate theme? You guys must love One Piece.
Our organizational identity is based on Space Pirate Captain Harlock. The founder of our group was inspired in particular by the movie Arcadia of My Youth, which is basically the story of how Harlock became a pirate in the first place. Our motto, “Under our flag, we sing in freedom”, is based on the Captain Harlock quote, “I live in freedom under my flag.” Astute observers will notice that the skull part of our logo is from Harlock’s flag.