Even though it hadn’t been all that long since I last went on a prowl in Shinjuku, when I grabbed my camera and took to the streets of Kabukicho on that day, for some reason the scenery evoked in me a certain sense of nostalgia. Nothing was supposed to change in the neighborhood in less than half a year, but I just couldn’t deny that rather strange feeling. Anyway, I did go out there again with the desire to shoot photographs.
It all started sixty years ago, when I arrived in Tokyo with my Canon 4Sb camera, and took my first picture on the square in front of Shinjuku Station’s east exit. Since that day, I have been taking an endless chain of photograph of that place called “Shinjuku,” which became for myself an irreplaceable “hometown of photography,” and an inescapable ”metropolis of photography.” It is a very real and actual, wild and erotic, and at once also a quite charming kind of labyrinth. As described above, the pictures in this volume of Record were all shot in the Kabukicho/Shinjuku area.
When I was a young dude living in Osaka, above all else, “Tokyo” was for me all about Ginza, Yurakucho and Akasaka. That’s because those were the places that appeared in popular songs of the day, and the images those songs had engraved on my mind were not images of Shinjuku or Shibuya. However, shortly after I eventually moved to Tokyo, I got totally immersed in all things Kabukicho/Shinjuku without turning a hair. It was my own nature and temperament that made me a hopeless captive who involuntarily surrendered to the fascination of Shinjuku. That was the time when the songs I warbled away were naturally replaced, one by one, with the likes of “Shinjuku no onna” and “Shinjuku blues”...
After all, that place called Shinjuku is essentially my second hometown, and in my book, it is in fact the hometown of photography itself. – Afterword by Daido Moriyama