Listening to Japanese music on the internet

Shoutcast provides a listing of many online music stations.  Here is a list of Japanese language music stations:

Katakana – te

Katakana: テ

Romaji: te

memory aide:  think of a telephone pole.  It looks like a telephone pole with two horizontal bars and one veritical bar.  The sound is the same “te” in telephone.

Characters that look like it: 

Katakana:   ナ    Romaji: na

Katakana:    チ   Romaji: chi

Katakana:    キ   Romaji: ki

Katakana:    モ      Romaji: mo

Katakana:    イ   Romaji: i

Katakana: ケ      Romaji: ke

How do you keep from confusing “te” with the above?  Well, the telephone has two cross bars.  So, that rules out na, i, and ke.  (There are several similar looking characters that have the bar to the side.  Remember also that the “te”lephone pole has the vertical bar in the middle.)

Now, it is going to be a little more difficult to seperate it from mo, chi and ki.  An obvious difference is that the vertical bar stops at the bottom horizontal bar and does not touch the top one.  Unfortunately our memory aide works against this point.  At this point, I can only point out this difference between them.  Remeber the “te”lephone pole does not go to the top bar.

 Example words:

 テープ       teepu      tape

 テーム        teemu       theme

Kana-a-day practice pad

I have found the Kana-a-day practice pad extremly useful for learning to write, read, and remember the Hiragana and Katakana.  Each day, it has a kana character, a place to practice it 24 times.  Since I am going to Japan in July, though, I have been trying to do 7 of the pages a day.  I definately recommend getting it.

Kana-A-Day Practice Pad (Tuttle Practice Pads)

Moving on to Katakana

I have learned the Hiragana syllabollary.  Now it is time to learn the Katakana.  There is a one to one correspondence between the Katakana and Hiragana.  So, this does not involve learning any new sounds.  Hiragana is used for Japanese words, so it made sense to learn that first.  Katakana is for foreign words and emphesis.

There are several Katakana characters that are extremely similar.  Consider the following:

ã‚· – shi

ツ – tsu


ソ – so

ン – n

There is a subtle difference in the slant of the bottom line and the shorter lines at the top.  It is very easy to comfuse these.

There are two characters that look almost like their Hiragana equivalent.

Romaji: ri

Hiragana:  り

Katakana: リ


Romaji: he

Hiragana:  へ

Katakana:  ヘ



Lists of resources to help you learn Japanese page:

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