Japan’s Loudness Cancels Dates, Denied U.S. Entry

Veteran Japanese hard rock band Loudness had to cancel a seven-date U.S. tour after the band was refused entry by immigration officials when they arrived in Chicago.  

Minoru Niihara of Loudness
James P. Hendershot
– Minoru Niihara of Loudness
M3 Rock Festival, Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, Md.

The quartet was set to kick off the tour at  in Chicago April 19, but immigration officers apparently balked at the members’ lack of visas.

The club posted a message on its website saying, “Due to the new strict policies the U.S. government has placed on foreigners entering the country, Loudness was denied entry into the United States.”

After being turned away the group and its manager got on a return flight back to Japan several hours later, according to a report by Kyodo News.

Vocalist Minoru Niihara wrote on his blog, “The U.S. tour has been canceled.” Various stories in the Japanese media seem to be at odds as to exactly what the problem was, but the group’s management company, Katana Music, said that in the past Loudness had been able to enter the U.S. “if they had proper invitation letters,” but this time officials demanded visas.

It’s not entirely clear if the band was going to be paid for the gigs it had scheduled. If paid, the band would have needed visas regardless.

Loudness debuted in the mid-1980s and had a major-label contract in the U.S. for a time. Some of the members even lived in the United States.

Guitarist Akira Takasaki wrote on his blog, “My suitcase has also returned home, but I’ll leave it alone so I can go back on tour anytime. I feel sorry for fans and others involved who were excited about the show. We’ll do our best to resume the tour.”