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“Nana” (2001) – An Anime that Refined Rock Music

“Nana” is an anime that was released in 2001 which centered around two girls, both named Nana. They meet when they end up sitting next to each other on the train to Tokyo. Nana K. is on the way to Tokyo for art school and the other Nana O. Is on the way to Tokyo to pursue her career as a musician. 

Coincidentally, the two end up signing a lease to be roommates without knowing ahead of time. Their personalities are complete opposites and that dynamic is what makes the show so unique.

Nana O. Is the lead singer of a rock band called Black Stones, or BLAST, an up-and-coming punk band.  Nana O.’s boyfriend, Ren, is the guitarist of a famous pop-rock band called TrapNest. A band of which Nana K. is a huge fan.

Essentially to keep things short, Nana K. and Nana O. both get caught up in the music industry as the two get more entangled with the behind-the-scenes of BLAST and TrapNest. 

Centering around Rock Music?

Music is a huge aspect of this show and I want to dive a little deeper into it.

I was shocked when I first watched this show that both bands that are featured in this show are huge rock bands and they dress the part too with their abundant piercings, unique hairstyles, and immaculate fashion sense. 

Rock music is not heavily seen in anime and I was curious why the author of the manga decided to make a story about it.

Turns out there is a Rock and Metal fanbase in Japan. Of course, as we know Rock and Metal to be, it really focuses on the authenticity of the music. The instruments. Being able to break out of the typical conformity of a daily modest lifestyle. 

I wasn’t really into Rock music at all when I started this show, but as I continued hearing their voices and sound as bands grew on me.


Over the course of the show, we see Nana K. go from being Nana O.’s roommate and groupie to becoming an important part of BLAST’s life. She impacts each band member in a different way. What I love about the show is that we get to see BLAST grow as a band from newbies to selling-out shows.

The musical component of this show is amazing too. It really exposes what it is like to be a musician and how the lives of people that have relationships with these musicals are impacted. How the media influences public opinion toward these bands.

The Black Stones or BLAST has four members: Nana Osaki (vocals), Nobuo Terashima (guitar), Shinichi Okazaki (bass), and Yasushi Takagi (drums)

TrapNest also has four members:  Reira Serizawa (vocals), Ren Honjo (guitar), Takumi Ichinose (bass), and Naoki Fujieda (drums).

Although the anime is a lot more than what I covered if you’re in it for the music check out this video with the full soundtrack.

If the premise seems interesting and you want to watch the anime, check it out on any anime platform or read the manga too.

By Mitali Joshi

A Senior at NCSU who is an enthusiastic consumer of music and loves writing about it.