TOP 8
in Loc ‘n’ Roll

BY Óscar Curros

Music is a universal language. Add some lyrics and you’ll have the perfect hook for language pros. It’s no wonder that so many people in our industry see music as more than just a hobby. In some cases, it’s hard to tell the side pursuit from the main profession.

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AKI ITO

CEO, chief consultant, and rock singer at LocalizationGuy

Location: Currently in Japan but available worldwide as a robot!

Favorite bands: The Beatles, Chicago, Journey

YouTube: @aki-oya-gsdream5264

A member of MultiLingual Media’s current editorial board, Aki defines himself as a “singing localizer.” Last November, he was a star at LocWorld Silicon Valley, where he participated using a robot. One of his original songs, “Love Is Love,” has 130,000+ views on YouTube.

KIRTI VASHEE

Language technology evangelist at Translated

Location: San Francisco, USA

Favorite bands: Frank Zappa, Nikhil Banerjee (sitar), KIshori Amonkar (Indian classical vocal)

Soundcloud: www.soundcloud.com/kirya1990

Instagram: @sitarbaba

One of Kirti’s styles is mantra rock — easily found at places like Bhakti Fest. Kirti is of Indian origin, lived in Mumbai for 10 years, and speaks Hindi and Gujarati. He learned to play the sitar and the bansuri (bamboo flute) and engaged with the Indian classical music community, culture, and ethos. He can also play the guitar for some classic rock songs.

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ARLE LOMMEL

Senior analyst at CSA Research

Location: Bloomington, Indiana, USA

Favorite bands: Guilhem Desq (avante garde hurdy-gurdy), Blowzabella (British folk), Téka (Hungarian

Arle plays hurdy-gurdy and unusual bagpipes (Northumbrian smallpipes, Hungarian duda, Swedish säckpipa), plus various other folk woodwinds. His most recent acquisition is a Galician gaita. He discovered the instrument by listening to Milladoiro way back in 1995. He has long liked the sound of drone-based music and the connection to a pre-modern music.

MICHELLE KUNIKO 国子 GASCOIGNE

Intercultural translation specialist and foreign language personal instructor at Elle Linguista

Location: San Francisco, USA

Favorite bands: The Beatles, João Gilberto, Los Amigos Invisibles

Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/michkgas

Raised in Los Angeles, California, in a multi-cultural home of Mexican-Japanese-French-American heritage, Michelle’s first musical memory is sitting on her father’s lap while he played the Brazilian Bossa Nova flagship song, “Garota de Ipanema” (“Girl from Ipanema”). She went on to found Bossa Suave, a Brazilian jazz band. One of her most recent performances was at LocWorld Silicon Valley, last November.

MICHAEL OSKAR MANNHARDT

President and CEO at Congree Language Technologies, Inc.

Location: Neustadt an der Weinstraße, Germany

Favorite bands: Toto, Journey, Sting

YouTube: @michaelmannhardt9913

Since 2016, Michael Oskar leads the tekom band. Today, besides his work, he mainly performs as a bassist and leads a couple semi-pro cover bands playing mainly soul/funk, ‘70s disco, and charts music. He’d already been a professional DJ during his student times and produced electronic dance music back in the ’90s. He’s also active as a remixer. Some of his productions can be found on Spotify under the name MIOSMA.

THE TEKOM BAND

The tekom Band primarily plays at tekom, the largest professional association for technical communication in Europe, with a lineup of people from the localization industry.

They cover songs from many different genres, and everyone is welcome to join on stage.
If you ever have an opportunity to attend, don’t miss the chance to see them in action.

JEFF ALLEN

Key expert advisor for Internal Strategic Consulting at SAP

Location: Paris, France

Favorite bands: Toto, Journey, Sting

YouTube: @jeffallenfrance

Jeff joined in 2000 as one of MultiLingual’s founding editorial advisors. In 2011, as the president of the employee association at SAP France, he set up the music class and concert program, ongoing today. His entire music equipment setup (piano, guitars, drumkit, bass guitar, sound system, mics, pedals, etc.) runs on rechargeable energy.

DARIO CASCIO

Localization consultant

Location: Cork, Ireland

Favorite bands: NOFX, No Use For A Name, Lagwagon

YouTube: @TheSicilianWanderer

Dario Cascio spent a good chunk of his life singing. Between 2008 and 2010, he was the lead singer of Thy Majestie, an Italian power metal band formed in 1999. With them, he recorded a live 2008 performance in Apeldoorn, Netherlands. He says that was his last ever concert “before becoming a serious adult.”

Óscar Curros is a journalist, translator, and writer for MultiLingual Media.

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