The World of J-pop: J-pop Week (#4-3)

Hello everyone,

Welcome back to J-pop week, I hope everyone is enjoying it so far because J-pop week is almost over. Without any further ado, I present to you today’s J-pop music videos.

The music video I chose as number 4 is “Beginner” by AKB48. I initially heard about AKB48 from Nico Nico dancers, they are dancers who upload dance covers on the popular website, Nico Nico Douga. I thought the song was catchy and I quickly became obsessed with it, the other song I like by AKB48 is “River”. That’s about it, I tried listening to other songs by this group, but it catch my interest. AKB48 is a Japanese idol group and originally the band had 48 members, but recently it increased to 140 members. Not your typical girl group, isn’t it? The group has their own theater located in Akihabara, Tokyo, where they perform daily. AKB48 made their debut in 2005, but the group became more popular a few years later with their singles “River” and “Beginner”. Since the group has a lot of members, AKB48 has sub-units and the so-called sister groups i.e. Otona AKB48 and Team Kaigai.

“Beginner” was released on October 27, 2010 and it is considered as Japan’s best selling single of 2010. It debuted as number one on the Oricon charts, as well as selling more than $1,000,000 copies. The melody of this song is strong, it’s like it inspires you to go and chase your dreams (some songs have that influence on me). The instrumental accompaniments are strong and powerful, the vocal work of the girls flows together nicely.

Now let’s move on to our next song, the music video I chose as number 3 is “Love So Sweet” by ARASHI. ARASHI is a five member Japanese boy band that was formed in 1999, the names of the members are Satoshi Ohno, Sho Sakurai, Masaki Aiba, Kazunari Ninomiya and Jun Matsumoto. Their single “Love So Sweet” is the opening theme for the hugely popular drama, “Hana Yori Dango” aka “Boys Over Flowers”. The song debuted on the number one of the Oricon charts and it also received a Double Platinum certification for selling 500,000 copies. This song your typical pop single with a cheerful melody and cheesy lyrics, it never fails to make me smile. The vocals sound heartfelt and the melody is memorable, this is definitely a classic in the J-pop world!

Enjoy and let me know you enjoyed today’s songs 🙂

AKB48 – Beginner

ENGLISH LYRICS TRANSLATION

In your position set!

Our past experiences and knowledge
Are just baggage
The wind keeps on blowing
And doesn’t leave anything behind afterwards

Search for a new road!
Don’t open someone else’s map!
When you look up from the ground you’ll be back at square one

Are we dreaming?
Do we believe in the future?
With no fears, with no regard to our limits
Throwing caution to the wind
Are we dreaming now?
As newly as kids
Let’s pull off the chains that control us
Change your mind
Change your mind
You don’t need to know anything, beginner!

Adults have failed and embarrassed themselves
And gotten hurt and traumatized
And become wise
Saying they never want to feel that way again

Challenges are stupid
What are you protecting by avoiding risk
And making silly calculations?

Are we living?
Do we want to live tomorrow?
We pretend to smile, pretend to understand
We haven’t dreamed for a while
Yeah, are we living?
Are we wasting our lives?
Feel the blood pulsing through your veins now!

Stand up! Together!
Remember the day you were born!
Everyone’s a beginner!
Stand up! Right away!
It won’t go easily
Right from the start
Stand up! Together!
Just go back to the beginning
One more time, beginner!
Stand up! Right away!
Open the book again, open the book again
It’ll be fine
Tear out the old pages
Come on, get started!
We can be reborn all the time

Are we dreaming?
Do we believe in the future?
With no fears, with no regard to our limits
Throwing caution to the wind
Are we dreaming now?
As newly as kids
Let’s pull off the chains that control us

We can’t do anything
We can’t do it right
So what?
We’re young
We can’t do anything
We can’t do it right away
And that’s why we have possibilities

The rain has stopped
The wind has stopped
And a light we’ve never seen
Is shining
Now’s the time

You’ve been reborn, beginner!

ARASHI – Love So Sweet

ENGLISH LYRICS TRANSLATION

What shined was neither the mirror nor the sun but you. Since then
Behind those tearful clouds is always a smiling moon. Another love story

Take the wounded dreams to yesterday
The sky will echo with the song of love

The sky will always, always remember the memories, even if we drift apart
For the girl I love so much, even if we won’t meet the second time
Shine more, you’re the best lady. My feelings will definitely, gently reach to you
Believing is everything. Love so sweet

So that you’ll always be able to see from there
I’ll spread my arms towards the sky and memories with you will spread
Your hands that changed
My stubborn and arrogant self. Love story will start

Our two winding paths will
Will be one rainbow here.

My dream of always, always chasing after our memories. Even if our distance grows
No matter how tough the night gets, no matter how hopeless the promise is
Laugh more, you’re the last lady. My prayers will definitely, gently reach to you
The sun will always rise. Love so sweet

The love I couldn’t express completely
Will turn into flowers and fall on the city
No matter where you go I’ll always feel your presence “here�?

The sky will always, always remember the memories, even if we drift apart
For the girl I love so much, even if we won’t meet the second time
Shine more, you’re the best lady. My feelings will definitely, gently reach to you
Believing is everything.
The sun will always rise.
Believing is everything. Love so sweet

 (Lyric translation by:http://parkminnie.wordpress.com/)

See you tomorrow and thanks for stopping by blog!

 

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4 thoughts on “The World of J-pop: J-pop Week (#4-3)

  1. Not the biggest AKB48 fan but I love their singles Choose Me and Uza – as in I would write film reviews and trailer posts with the songs on repeat for days. I respect the operation that goes on there and the dedication of the girls and some of them are even great actresses.

  2. Thank you, it is always nice to see an interesting, stimulating post. I’ve given up on “Freshly Pressed”. Every time I check it, I am always sorry looked, but I digress …

    The AKB48 (and sister groups) have HUNDREDS of songs. If you like disco dance songs, they have those. If you like heart-warming ballads, you can find those. I probably like Akimoto’s 1960s-meets-1980s power pop songs the best. The cute “kawaii” songs that could only be sung by AKB48 take me into the zone. Some of the music videos are very funny, very clever. There is also a lot of beauty. I would go as far to say that the group is the most fun thing in popular music.

    I love AKB48, but I’m not a big fan of their songs that sound like American rap-music. In fact I converted to Japanese music to get AWAY from what is popular in America. (Spoken like a cranky, aging baby-boomer.)

    With all due respect, the one you have chosen here is TERRIBLE. This is the side of AKB48 that sounds like Janet Jackson. As in, how fast can I turn off the radio? It was popular, but there sure are better songs on that album. You found one of their most manufactured, most insincere songs.

    I know, music – like beauty — is one of the most subjective subjects that there is.

    I do not mean to be confrontational or disrespectful. I encourage you to view a wider range of AKB48 music videos with an open mind.

    I’m just a new-wave kung-fu hippie punk. As my generations said: “disco sucks”

    1. Lol and that’s exactly why I like this song, because it has a fun beat. Plus I’m a Janet Jackson fan 🙂 I love American and Japanese music.

      You are totally entitled to your opinion, I just happened to like this song and this is the song I wanted to share. Plus I always have an open mind about music, if I didn’t I wouldn’t listen to foreign music.

      Music is my life so I’m always open to listen to different kinds of music.

      Have a nice day!

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