Well at least no idol, less emotionally fulfilling, happy and positive entertainment. One of the things that makes supporting idols so much different to liking other singers is that you share in their journey in such a big way. A case in point for me would be Hamaura Ayano. She is only just debuting with Kobushi Factory but I’ve been following her career for years due to the Kenshuusei. She was one of my two favourite members alongside Tanabe Nanami. And for me those two show the up and down sides to following the Kenshuusei perfectly. One idol leaves after many years without debuting and you feel sad that you never got to see the fruits of her hard work (although for all I know it was her decision to leave so there’s no point in being too sad). Then just a few months later the Kobushi Factory line-up is announced and there’s Hamachan crying tears of happiness. The emotional involvement you have with idols goes so much beyond that of other singers. With other singers you may get emotionally involved with songs but with idols it’s every aspect of their career. It’s cheering them on to dance better, to sing better, to have success, to have more solo work, to sell more records in the group, perhaps to act in musicals, films or tv dramas, to have even more success, to sell more goods, to get solo events, to have even greater success. It’s all-encompassing. And really that’s beautiful because you are seeing the human endeavour. You aren’t seeing some superstar you are seeing a young person showing commitment, hard-work, determination, humour, positivity and all those other qualities that lead hopefully to a successful and long-lasting career.
We support idols. We feel happy when they do well. We feel sad when things don’t go as planned. Even when idols have been around many years that support doesn’t diminish. C-ute have been around ten years and I’ve been supporting them for maybe seven of those years. When Kimi wa Jitensha Watashi wa Densha de Kitaku was released I was so pleased that it sold over 45,000 copies. The previous single (the brilliant Sekaiichi Happy na Onna no Ko) didn’t even sell 20,000. Then Crazy Kanzen na Otona sold 50,000 and was followed by Kanashiki Amefuri/Adam to Eve no Dilemma selling over 60,000. They had trebled their sales in little over a year and were suddenly playing Budokan (two years in a row no less) not to mention Yokohama Arena this year. I felt elated. Record sales aren’t everything and normally I’m only really interested in whether I like the songs or not. With most other music I’ve liked over the years it’s been mainly alternative stuff that’s unlikely to bother the charts too much. Yet the journey these idols take you on makes you really wish for great success. You see how much they put into their careers and you want so much for them to do well. Okay in one way it’s great marketing by the record companies but that’s no bad thing because it’s also great entertainment. Idols are about so much more than just singing and dancing. They are about human emotion. They are about talent, strength, guts and above all else personality. Idols do a job where they spread happiness all around the world. They start from a young age and they work so hard to become successful. When you think of the journey they take you on it’s easy to see why they have so many devoted supporters. They give so much happiness in so many ways and so you feel they deserve so much success in return.
All of which brings me to Kobushi Factory and back to Hamachan. We all know C-ute will one day have that future departure. I’m not looking forward to that but I’m really happy that there’s this really promising group waiting in the wings. I don’t think C-ute have ever released a single I disliked. It’s early days for KF but their music style is perfect for me. The members all fit together really well and even though I have a favourite already and then two others I like a lot (Inoue Rei and the quickly growing on me Nomura Minami who is just so expressive and happy when performing) the other five members all show promise and seem like a diverse and interesting lot. I haven’t felt this excited by a new group since S/mileage’s excellent indie days. Of course they also had a member I’d followed for a few years before she debuted. I really hope Hamachan lasts longer than Maeda Yuuka.
C-ute are my favourite group in Hello! Project. I have to say I’d be surprised if Kobushi Factory don’t become firm second favourites. I already put Hamachan third in my top idols list after Nacky and Maimi. This again mirrors Yuuka (aww crap. Please don’t leave!) I want to buy multiple versions of their single. This also mirrors S/mileage. I guess that just goes to show that things don’t always turn out how I’d like. But whatever happens it’s better to go on a happy journey that stops abruptly after a year or two than not go out at all. I’m hoping Kobushi Factory mirror C-ute in longevity and that Hamachan is the next Airi. She’s certainly got presence, humour, a good voice and cuteness. She’s a ready-made H!P replacement for that hopefully still long off day when C-ute graduhiatus.
Anyway here is the PV for Kobushi Factory’s Dosukoi! Kenkyo ni Daitan…
It’s one track of three that is being released on 2nd September. The other two songs being Ramen Daisuki Koizumi-san no Uta and Nen ni wa Nen (Nen Iri Ver) both of which also have PVs. The PV for Nen ni wa Nen is also up now on Kobushi Factory’s official Youtube page. I’m also posting a few Hamachan screencaps. Before that I want to go back to C-ute though and say one other thing. Aren’t they overdue an album? I mean I know people are asking when their next single is but they haven’t released an album since Queen of Jpop came out in September 2013. Two years? Far far too long!
Hamachan PV caps!
Tell me she’s not cute. Go on! I’ll…I’ll…well I’ll respect your right to an opinion and totally dismiss it at the same time.
“I…I…I just met Morningtime.“
“Oh my god you poor thing. Here. You need a hug.“
Why are they running from her? This is the one time I wouldn’t mind being the victim of a senseless Hama attack.
I have picspammed Hamachan. My job here is done. Well at least for now. We are Ayanomous. Expect us…