Erina Kamiya (Kamen Joshi)
Interview by David Cirone
April 23, 2018
Continuing our interview with gravure model, YouTuber phenomenon, and musical performer Erina Kamiya, where she lets us in on her love of motorcycles, her approach to working in films, and her not-so-secret plan to save the world.
Your YouTube channel became super-popular as soon you started, and you’ve created some outrageous, crazy videos. How do you come up with the ideas?
Erina: When I was little, I would imagine swimming in a pool filled with pudding, or filling a bath full of hot chocolate into bath and jumping into it. I used to share my thoughts with my mother like “Can we walk on the surface of water?” and my mom would give me a look like, “What is my daughter saying?” But I never changed. I still have a lot of curiosity. I’ll keep sharing my thoughts on YouTube, and I hope everyone will enjoy what I enjoy, too.
Erina: OK… Maybe Nanaka can try doing my gravure model posing showing off her… well, let’s say her “trained breast muscles”! (laughs)
You’re not shy about making fun of yourself, or playing around with people’s expectations of your sexy image.
Erina: Not at all. All humans have a gender and a type of physical figure. Some people are born with breasts, some people are born without. I’m happy I was born with this figure. The appearance of breasts trigger natural human instincts, but I don’t think I’m pushing the limits and trying to be too sexy or aggressive like some America celebrities. We call breasts “oppai” in Japanese, and yes, like that video, I believe “oppai” can save the world. “Oppai” is peace.
When did you start riding motorcycles? How did you get interested in them?
Erina: It’s been an year since I got my license. I started to get interested when a magazine was looking for an idol who wanted to get a motorcycle license. In Japan, we have different kinds of licenses for motorcycles. The easiest one is a license for moped, and usually you can get that license in one day. But I failed that test not just once but twice! So when I got the offer to ride a real bike, I was a little afraid of taking the job. Now I’m getting used to it, and I’m working with some bike magazines like Zokeisha and I collaborate with Suzuki motor shows. I’ve been really busy these days so I’m not riding much recently, but I would love to go for a ride on a big bike like Suzuki Hayabusa and go down Route 66 like in American movies.
Recently, you went to the red carpet premiere for Umi ni nose ta Gazu no yume. What was that experience like?
Erina: I thought I would be nervous, but it turned out not to be stressful at all. It was the first red carpet event I ever attended where I was the main guest. The weather was bad, so it all wrapped up pretty fast and I didn’t really have as much time as I would have liked to enjoy it. It was just “walk walk walk smile” and that was it! Actually, I was more nervous another time when I walked the red carpet back in 2014 for the premiere of a film called Outlaw. I had to walk the red carpet really close to Samuel L. Jackson, and i had no idea what I was doing. It was the same type of thing, it ended very quickly. They tell you to walk from here and say “Go”. It looks like it’s long when you see the report on TV but it actually feels very short. Mostly I was like, “That’s it?”.
You performance in the film got a very positive response. What was the biggest challenge for you to prepare for the role?
Erina: It turned out to be much easier and relaxed than I thought it would be. The director told me and my cast mates to come over and asked us, “What is your real feeling when you say this line?” and “How would you really react if someone said this to you?” Sometimes he changed the whole scene to fit our natural reactions, so I was able to feel very creative and productive. My scenes took ten days to film, and the director gave me so much support the whole time.
You’ve also acted in the “Alice Films” short films project. Which project did you enjoy the best?
Erina: There is a short film called Ame futte chi uruou. It’s about a girl who grows up unhappy. She was carrying a lot of pain inside her and she was only 20 years old. Plus, that character was getting married to her friend’s father. It was a very unusual type of character that I never performed before. Before this role, most of the characters I was playing in movies were similar to me, or they had the same kind of dream or background. It was easy to identify with those characters because of what was already inside me. But for this story, the mood was so much heavier and it was really hard. I had to dig deep inside myself to see if I could find a true connection to those feelings. But this movie opened my eyes to a different way I could perform as an actress, and it made me stronger, I think.
Your YouTube channel and Facebook page receive many comments from overseas fans. How do you feel about becoming an idol who is popular worldwide?
Erina: I’m really grateful for all the positive comments and messages. All of the work I’m doing — idol, modeling, YouTuber — everything is important to me and I’m giving my best no matter what the focus is. I’m not sure if there’s any one way that people find out about who I am… maybe it’s through Kamen Joshi, or maybe from YouTube, or maybe now it could be because of films. I would like everyone to see my multiple sides, and most of all I would be so excited if people could see my live performance so I can share my energy one hundred percent. I really want to put a smile on your face!
Erina Kamiya YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsjYrprh7HRgmE5k3IcQCnQ
Erina Kamiya Twitter: https://twitter.com/kamiya__erina
Erina Kamiya Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/alicekamiyaerina
Kamen Joshi HP (English): http://www.alice-project.biz/kamenjoshi/en
Kamen Joshi Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kamenjoshi
Kamen Joshi Twitter: https://twitter.com/J_Kawaii_Girls
Kamen Joshi Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kamenjoshi
BUY AT CDJAPAN!