rythm – ILU GRACE interview

We interviewed Kazu and Ayane from ILU GRACE, whose song “rhythm” is included in the new update to Lyriko for learning Japanese.


Masako (interviwer), Kazu, and Ayane

– How many people are in your group, and how do you work?
Kazu: Basically, it’s just the two of us. Ayane is vocalist and plays the keyboard, Kazu is drummer. Ayane writes the lyrics and melody, and we both do arrangements together. We create the melody and lyrics separately and then combine them, but sometimes they both come out at the same time.

– Where are you from, and how did you meet?
Ayane: I was born in Miyazaki prefecture in Japan.
Kazu: I was born in Los Angeles, and then grew up in Miyazaki, too. We met in Tokyo through music events.

– When did you decide to become musicians?
Ayane: I wanted to be musician when I was really young. I decided I wanted to be a singer when I was in second grade. My father was a jazz guitarist, and I started piano when I was four. Actually, my name, “Ayane,” has a Kanji character meaning “sound.” I started to go to vocal training school in high school, and sometimes I was on a radio program ran by my teacher.

Kazu: I also started learning piano when I was in fourth grade, and I started drums in middle school. It was really […]



We just released learning Japanese version!

Thank you for waiting! We just released learning Japanese version! Please download from these links, and let us know how you like it!


Why did we make a Japanese version of “Lyriko: Learn Languages with Music?”
For Japanese learners, it’s a big challenge to remember all the characters and learn both polite and casual expressions. Lyriko makes learning Japanese fun and relaxing! Because the writing systems are such a challenge, we broke them down into two stages:
Beginner uses only Hiragana and Katakana, with English transcriptions. These are the phonetic writing systems, with fewer characters.
Advanced introduces Kanji, supported by Hiragana transcriptions. Kanji has many more characters, but keep at it!
This release includes 17 songs from beginner to advanced level, and each song can be played in easier and harder ways.



Have fun learning Japanese!



Artist interview – Bibiana Briceño

Lyriko’s learning Spanish version features several artists, but none more prominently than Bibiana Briceño. It’s fair to say that learning Spanish with Lyriko would not be possible (yet) without her songs. That’s why we reached out to Bibiana first, in our new series of artist interviews.

Skylight Games (SG): Bibiana, thanks for doing this interview. Want to say hello to all your Lyriko fans?
Bibiana Briceño (BB): Greetings to the Lyriko community. I hope you will enjoy learning Spanish as much as I enjoyed working on the songs. There is a lot of love in this wonderful app!!!
SG: Where are you from?
BB: Bogotá. Colombia. South America.

SG: When and why did you decide to become a musician?
BB: When I was 15 years old I recorded a song for the first time. Being in the studio was a wonderful experience for me and from that moment on I knew that I wanted to be a part of the music magic.

SG: What inspires your music?
BB: Lyricwise. Everyday people, the small details of life and the news. Musicwise: The sounds of world music (Formal and folk)

SG: How has your music evolved?
BB: The lyrics have become very important. Going back to my roots and the experience of years of recording and composing are finally getting results with more polished songs, based on simplicity and meaningful messages for the people.

SG: Where did the inspiration for “La alegría de amar,” “Lobo,” and “Tabla del cinco” […]



Masako presented Lyriko at Harvard Social Enterprise Conference study tour gathering!

Masako attended the Harvard Social Enterprise Conference study tour in 2012, and they recently had their annual gathering in Tokyo. She presented Lyriko via Skype at 5am Boston time. She talked about enterprises in Boston and how she’s adapting to the new working style. People were surprised about how the working environments are different between Tokyo and Boston and curious about “bootstrapping.” It was a great opportunity to connect with Japanese social entrepreneurs.

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Masako presented Lyriko at the Boston Japanese International Development Community!

In Boston, we have the Japanese International Development Community which is the community for people who are interested in international development. Masako spoke about her experiences working with Indonesian kids, and about Lyriko, especially how we want to help immigrants and people who don’t have learning opportunities in developing countries. Lyriko is freemium, so wherever people have access to devices and internet, they can play it. Attendees were curious about our way of working as well, especially how we communicate with team members who live all over the world! They asked really great questions and had a workshop to think about Indonesian educational issues. Like how teachers don’t come to school, or kids are cheating. For those problems, we got several unique ideas! It was really great to meet people interested in international development.




Dan presented Lyriko at The Close It Summit

We attended The Close It Summit in DC, a conference addressing the skills gap between what employers need and what job seekers have. Dan spoke about Lyriko on the panel “Your Smart Phone Just Got Smarter: Education to Employment.” He talked about Lyriko as a way to help immigrants and other language learners increase their employable skills like teamwork and communication in an enjoyable way that fits their busy lives. We met more than 30 potential collaborators and it was a great opportunity to discuss closing the skills gap. You’ll have to trust us that there were more attendees than shown in this picture. It’s totally a real conference!



We presented Lyriko at Educational Gaming

Masako and Dan got a great opportunity to talk at the Educational Gaming conference put on by SERESC and Zulama. There were so many great questions raised by the teachers who attended, and it was more interactive than we expected. We talked about how to work with remote teams, working with people from other languages and cultures, and what abilities kids will need in the future. The teachers were already starting from the point that “learning should be fun,” so it was great to move past that point to how to make it really engaging. We could feel all the attendees are trying to change education, and that gave us a lot of energy. We’re so grateful for such a wonderful opportunity!