Welcome to MELOS no Michi
an information and news blog dedicated to covering the latest news for: AKB48, SKE48, NMB48, HKT48, JKT48


AKB48 Is Looking for a Part-Time Member
Following OtonaAKB, AKB48 came up with a new form of temporary membership: part-time idol. Find out more about this new project here.
AKB48 Team 8 Makes Theater Debut
AKB48 Team 8 performed its first theater show on August 5. Get more information about the shonichi performance here!
SKE48 Announces 7th Generation Auditions
SKE48 is looking for new members and this time the fans will be part of the decision about who joins the group!
AKB48 37th Single Senbatsu Election - Final Results
AKB48 held its election for the 6th time and for the 1st time Watanabe Mayu won it. Check out the full results here!
Details on the AKB48 Group Pennant Race
The AKB48 Group teams will compete against each other in a new event, the AKB48 Group Pennant Race. Points will be awarded based on theater ticket applications, theater version handshake ticket sales and sousenkyo votes.
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29 February 2012

Shinoda Mariko and Matsui Rena are Chukyou Racecourse Ambassadors

It was announced today that Matsui Rena will be cutting the ribbon at the Grand Opening ceremony of the Chukyo Racecourse on March 3rd, 2012.

Official Website: http://chukyo-keiba.com/
Official YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/ChukyoKeibaCom

The Chukyo Racecourse was closed in 2010 for an extensive  two year renovation that cost over 17.3 billion yen. With the renovations comes a new grass turf, the longest in Western Japan at 1,705 meters, and new grandstand named Pegasus. The mascot character of the newly reborn Chukyo Racecourse is also called "Pegastar". The new stand is also eco-friendly, equipped with solar panels.

Mariko and Rena was appointed as the Official Ambassadors of the Chukyo Racecourse back in December 2011, when the reopening date was announced. They have also starred in 2 CMs. However, there was no mention of Mariko attending the Official Opening.

I could be wrong but I think this is the first time any 48 member was part of the ribbon-cutting ceremony for something this big. Wow good job Rena. It's unfortunate though that Mariko couldn't join her. Such a busy schedule she has. 

Anyway I would like to see more collaborations like this between the various 48 groups. Where they both are equal, and it's not "AKB48" that includes SKE48. 

Rena is extremely entertaining in those two commercials, the final "IKE!I IKE! IKE! IKE! IKE!" part in the 2nd CM especially. I certainly was not expecting that and it caught me so off guard that I couldn't stop laughing for 10 mins. 
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AKB48 Will Co-Host New TBS Music Program

AKB48 will co-host a new music program alongside SMAP's Nakai Masahiro and actress Esumi Makiko starting April 2012.

Currently the title of the music program has not been revealed. What is known is that it's a 1hour show and it will air on TBS every Tuesday, at 21:00. Each episode will have around 3-4 artists.

Nakai Masahiro and Esumi Makiko will both be present on all episodes, however the AKB48 member(s) will be swapped every episode.

This is TBS's Golden Time first music program in two years since "The Music Hour" ended in 2010. TBS also hosts the music shows CDTV (24:58) and Coming Soon! (11:50), which is also hosted by Nakai Masahiro.

Wow this is great news. AKB48 hosting a music show. I'm just amazed. And it's Golden Time too!
Currently only Takamina has experience MCing for a music show, Kinki Kids' Shin Domoto Kyoudai where she is a regular. But the member's variety program skills should work here too. 
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NMB48 [Osaka Juuban Shoubu] Live Tour Locations Announced

NMB48 has announced the 10 locations for their [Osaka Juuban Shoubu] Live Tour in Osaka on April and May 2012. The 10 locations are spread out around the various cities in Osaka.

Announcement: http://nmb48-staff.laff.jp/blog/2012/02/nmb48-10-5cdd.html

Osaka Juuban Shoubu

April 19: Kashiwara Riviere Hall (1175 seats)
April 24: Suita May Theater (1397 seats)
April 25: Sakai City Hall (1395 seats)
May 2: Osaka ORIX Theater (2400 seats)
May 3: Osaka ORIX Theater (2400 seats)
May 16: Takatsuki Modern Theater (1564 seats)
May 27: Kaizuka Cosmos Theater (1224 seats)
May 29: Kishiwada Nakari Hall (1552 seats)
May 30: Yao Prism Hall (1440 seats)
May 31: NHK Osaka Hall (1417 seats)

(credit to rinatin of Everyday48 for romanization)

Only Team N will be participating in the tour though. The total number of seats in all the theaters combined is 15,964, and tickets are priced at 4,800yen. More details will be announced soon.

The tour is held to thank all the local (osaka) fans that supported NMB48, helping then achieve the record of three consecutive top spots in the Oricon Charts since their debut. Currently, tickets to NMB48's theater shows are very difficult to win, so this is also a good chance for the locals to finally catch a glimpse of an NMB48 performance.

I wonder why only Team N? I guess Team M will stay at the NMB48 Theater and hold down the fort... but why can they just alternate between the two Teams?

NMB48 announces Live Tour in Osaka Prefecture
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28 February 2012

Sato Sumire, Nito Moeno Double Casted for [Peter Pan] Musical

Sato Sumire and Nito Moeno are double casted in a broadway musical of "Peter Pan", playing the role of the heroine Wendy.

The musical will start on July 20th, 2012 at the Tokyo International Forum. Also on July 31st, it will be the 1,500th time shown since it first premiered 32 years ago on 1981. "It's an honor to perform on an anniversary. It's a musical that both adults and children will enjoy. I will do my best to perform." Nito commented

In the original casting, Wendy was played by actress Kosaka Miyuki, then followed Hiki Rie, Onyanko Club member Nitta Eri, Onishi Yuka, and Kanda Sayaka just to name a few. In more recent years, it was played by Yoshimoto Miyoko in 2001, Iwasaki Hiromi in 2005, Mabuchi Erika in 2008.

The role of Wendy is usually given to experienced actresses, and only twice was it played by a teenager. Imamura Masami was 19 years old when she first played Wendy in 1998. Moeno will be 20 years old on July 22nd, and Sumire still 18. "I'm happy that I get to wear Wendy's cute clothes. I've been acting in musicals since elementary school. Though i'm feeling nervous about it now, I'll show you a Wendy who can only be acted out by me." she said.

Peter Pan
Cast (Only 48 related members shown)
AKB48: Nito Moeno, Sato Sumire
Performance period: July 20 to August 1st
Venue: Tokyo International Forum

I'm happy to see both Moeno and Suuchan given such a prestigious role in a big musical. Ogipro is doing a good job. But I wonder if they can pull it off? I haven't seen seen either of them act except in AKB48 dramas (Majisuka Gakuen, Sakura Kara no Tegami). Anyway I have confidence in their acting skills. Otherwise they wouldn't have been chosen right?

Side note: Suuchan looks kinda fierce in that above picture.
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Nogizaka46 Appointed as "Sukapa-! J-League 2012 Official Supporter"

On February 28th, 2012, Nogizaka46 has been appointed as the Sukapa-! J-League 2012 Official Supporter!. There will be a CM, titled [Ketsui], starting March 3rd.

At the Sukapa-! x J-League press conference, Nogizaka46 members dressed up with original soccer-uniform-styled costumes and appeared as surprise guests. Sukapa, officially known as SkyPerfecTV, is a satellite TV service in Japan.

Hidari mune no Yuuki, one of the songs in Nogizaka46's debut single, was used as the Sukapa-! J-League 2012 official cheer song, and it will be used in TV programmes and CM.

Regarding being appointed the official supporter, Ikoma Rina said, "I feel really honoured to be appointed as the official supporter. From here on, Nogizaka46 shall become one and support the teams together with the other fans and supporters. And I hope we will be able to heat up the atmosphere as well".

She also added "Nadeshiko Japan received a lot of attention from everyone in Japan. I hope they will work hard to achieve a gold medal during the London Olympics".

Miyazawa Seira, whose father used to be a professional soccer player, said, "When I told my father about this news, he was shocked and said, 'Really!? I'm so jealous that you get this chance.' I shall work hard for my father's share as well and hope to liven up the atmosphere together with the supporters in the stadium".

Read more ...

26 February 2012

Sato Amina, Katayama Haruka to Perform with Kinomi Nana

Kinomi Nana, a famous Japanese singer, is holding a concert to celebrate her 50th year in the industry. The concert will take place at the Le theatre Ginza by PARCO from May 29th to June 2nd.


The two Atelier Duncan agency girls Sato Amina and Katayama Haruka will also be part of the cast for the concert. Furthermore, it was announced that Nakagawa Haruka and Urano Kazumi will appear as special guests on the May 29th opening day show.

Kinomi Nana 50 years anniversary concert

(Only AKB48 members shown here)
Katayama Haruka (AKB48), Sato Amina (AKB48)
May 29: starts 19:00
May 30: starts 14:00, 19:00
May 31: starts 19:00
June 01: starts 14:00
June 02: starts 14:00
*Doors open 30 mins before concert starts
SPECIAL GUEST (May 29th only)
Hirao Masaaki, Emoto Takenori, Nakagawa Haruka (AKB48), Urano Kazumi, Kondo Masaomi
Le theatre Ginza by PARCO

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Akimoto Sayaka Completes Tokyo Marathon 2012


Akimoto Sayaka has successfully completed the Tokyo Marathon for the 2nd time in a row, finishing at 5h34m13s this year.

Her timing at last year's Tokyo Marathon 2011 was 6h53h53s, reducing 1 hour from her run time this year. She has also achieved her goal of completing the marathon under 6 hours.

Awaiting at the finish line was Sayaka's mother. When asked what kind of daughter Sayaka is, she replied "an excellent daughter, and someone I can be proud of". Sayaka also commented  "I'm glad that I managed to finish the marathon, I hate losing just like mom" with a relieved expression on her face

Sayaka ran this year's marathon for the charity organisation "Charity to Connect Lives" which was chosen by her mother, who also donated the 100,000yen needed for her to take part in the race as a charity runner.

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25 February 2012

AKB0048 Anime Will Include Famous Seiyuus

Announced on February 25th, the upcoming [AKB0048] anime will not only have OOO48 members as seiyuus, but will also include famous seiyuus to voice the future versions of original AKB48 members in the show.


Currently, only 3 positions have been filled, the other seiyuus have not been announced yet. Those 3 are:
Kanda Akemi: 9th Generation Oshima Yuko
Horie Yui: 6th Generation Kashiwagi Yuki
Tamura Yukari: Watanabe Mayu Type 3

Ummmm. Why can't the original members act out their own characters? Their voices will be more accurate that way. The only reason I can think for this move is to get the normal anime fans to watch the show because their favorite seiyuu is in it. I know that's the reason why I sat through countless boring anime in the past.

It's kinda strange that Tamura Yukari will voice Mayuyu, while Mayuyu voices another member. I'm also curious to what "mayuyu type 3" means? Cyborg Mayuyu in the anime? Yes please.

I wonder which seiyuu will get the holy grail of voicing Acchan? 

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AKB48 Becomes Spokesperson for Suicide Prevention Month

On February 22nd, the Japanese Government has asked AKB48 to step in and become the Spokesperson for Suicide Prevention, citing their "widespread influence over many demographic groups". They will start appearing in news and commercials soon.

Earlier this month, the Japanese Government created "GKB47", an anti-suicide program. It was highly critzied by both the public and fellow members of the government, and over 70 civilian groups because of it's similarity to AKB48. A member of the DPJ called it "deeply inappropriate".

"GKB47" stands for GateKeeper Basic 47. "Gatekeepers" in Japan are people who can recognize symptoms of depression in others and can recommend treatment to them. "Basic" is used to show the simplicity of the program, and finally the number "47" is the number of prefectures in Japan.

Now the Japanese Government decided to scrap the "GKB47" Suicide Prevention Program, citing criticism from civilian organizations as well as the ineffectiveness of the program, and have turned to AKB48 instead of just copying their name.

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24 February 2012

Akimoto Yasushi on SDN Graduation and Mitsumune Kaoru

On February 22nd, Akimoto Yasushi spoke on his Google+ page regarding SDN48's graduation on March 31st.

He mentioned that he has received a petition from the fans to retract the graduation of all SDN48 members. However, he cited the lack of an age limit in SDN as a problem. Without one, members can stay in SDN forever and there wouldn't be any graduations.

Translated by emptystring
I received a petition to retract the decision to graduate all SDN members.  I received a huge collection of signatures and I was happy to see them.
I really would like to sympathize.

But the problem is, SDN is unlike AKB, where members can decide for themselves when to graduate.
There is no age limit, so they could conceivably stay in SDN forever.
Because I can't decide who should stay and who should graduate, so I have been considering new careers for all the members.
There is a lot to think about.
Thank you, everyone.

So what do you think about this?

Honestly I don't see why he has to graduate the members. These members really have skill. And I mean real skill. It's a real waste that the 3rd generation members have to graduate so quickly after joining. Especially Tojima Hana and Komatani Hitomi, who took a second chance at being an idol after graduating from AKB on 2008.

If he absolutely has to graduate them, why can't he graduate the members by generation? That will at least let the newew members have more time in the group.

In a later post, he also talked about Mitsumune Kaoru, who has been getting a lot of media time with gravure shoots, commercials and TV shows:

Translated by emptystring
Lately I've often been asked about Kaoru - "Are you pushing her more than usual?"
Since we're on this topic, I'll answer it here once and for all.
Her TV, gravure and commercial appearances were all requests from the other side.
I did not force them.
She is still a Kenkyuusei and it's great that she's already getting so much attention.
Kondo from Shukan Playboy or Settsu from Nikkan Sports have all talked about Kaoru's charm.
I am looking forward to how this will turn out.

At least we now know the reason for all the push. But still, the scale of the pushing is really incredible give that she is still a kenkyuusei.

There is actually a lot more to this post - he made a series of 4 "passionate" posts this morning, mostly talking about potentials and going after one's dreams - full translations of these posts can be found at Bilingual48.
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SDN48 [Yuuwaku no Garter] CD and DVD to release on 28 March

After 2 years since SDN48 started performing their [Yuuwaku no Garter] stage, it has finally been decided that they will release a Studio Recording CD and DVD for the stage on March 28th, 2012.

For both the Studio Recording CD and DVD, SDN48 will be separated into 1st generation members, and 2nd + 3rd generation members. The tracklist is the same for both CD and DVD.

Yuuwaku no Garter is SDN48's first, only, and last stage, which they have been performing since they first debuted on August 2009. All of SDN48 will graduate on March 31st at NHK Hall.

SDN48 1st Stage
Yuuwaku no Garter
28 March 2012

01. overture (SDN48 ver.)
02. Saturday night party
03. Never!
04. Black boy
05. Yuuwaku no Garter
06. I'm sure.
07. All In
08. Jajauma Lady
09. Ganbariina
10. Futsu no Anata
11. Best by...
12. Aisareru tame ni
13. Kodoku na Runner
14. Touhikou
15. Vampire Keikaku

Well about time. Finally I can hear Yuuwaku no Garter in high quality. Wonder why it took them so long? Also will the CD and DVD show the 18+ version of the songs or the full version? I hope it's the full version.

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Watarirouka Hashiritai 7 to Appear in Crayon Shin-Chan Anime

From left: Kikuchi Ayaka, Komori Mika, Nakagawa Haruka, Ota Aika (small fairy), Iwasa Misaki, Watanabe Mayu

Announced on 24 February 2012, Watarirouka Hashirita 7 will be voice acting in popular anime, Crayon Shin-Chan.

Though it is already announced that AKB0048 will be released in spring 2012, Crayon Shin-Chan will be the first anime series in which AKB48 characters appear as themselves.

The arc is called [Uchu Kazoku Nohara da zo] and will be shown on 09 and 16 March 2012Warota7 members will be appearing in the show on "Planet Warota" as "Warota-tians"

After recording the dialogues, Watanabe Mayu said, "I was really nervous, it is a show that I've always loved watching since I was young. I was very excited while doing the recording! I'm very honoured that they are able to perfectly replicated my fringe and twintails in the anime!!"

Although they are called Watarirouka Hashiritai 7, Hirajima Natsumi will not be participating in this project.
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Matsui Sakiko's Solo Album Has Been Confirmed

According to Akimoto Yasushi's post on Google+, Matsui Sakiko's solo album has been confirmed. This album is set to be released sometime this summer.

What we can expected from the album would be instrumentals of various famous AKB songs, as well as theme songs, such as Google Citizens' Theme Song, Utsui Ken's Pressure Training Theme Song, ggrks Theme Song, Passion Theme Song, just to name a few.

Also, the Google Citizens' Theme Song will be an African tribal music styled song.

These songs will be composed and arranged by Hattori Takayuki. Hattori-san happily agreed to compose right away. Also the CD jacket will be designed by the newly formed AKB Art Club.

It's great how Aki-p is promoting some of the members dream this year, with Wasamin's enka solo and now Sakippe's piano solo. The members joined AKB so they could make their dreams come true and we actually see it happening for them! Congratulations Sakippe!!

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23 February 2012

HKT48 announces formation of Team H + 1st stage

Today, HKT48 announced in their official blog that on March 4th, Team H will be formed and also will be performing their first stage on the same day. At the moment, no details have been given beside the official announcement and date.

The 16 members who will be chosen for Team H will be announced on the same day as the stage performance. Currently the 1st generation members are doing Team S' 2nd Stage [Te wo Tsunaginagara] in their theater since November of last year.

Its great that they have decided to form Team H because it is good to know that it won't be far behind the other groups now. This might also mean a debut single from HKT soon. The new stage will likely be a revival of an old stage too, which one is the question. Which stage would you like to see them perform?

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Nogizaka46 Debut Single [Guruguru Curtain] 1st Day Sales

Nogizaka46 released their debut single [Guruguru Curtain] earlier today, it's first day selling 84,905 copies.

Nor bad for a rival group, although they probably wouldn't have garnered this much sales if they weren't connected to AKB as rivals. All they hype in the media because they are "official rivals" was quite a clever promotional tactic to promote the group and single. Oh the irony, AKB is helping their rivals grow.

There's not really much point comparing sales records at this point of time, so I'll leave that until the weekly sales are out. I predict around 130 to 140k at the end of the way, unless there are some late shipments that ill give the single a sudden boost in sales mid-week, then it's impossible to guess.

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22 February 2012

New AKB48 Google+ TV Show [AKB48 no Gugutasu min]

AKB48 will start a new TV show called [AKB48 no Gugutasu min] (AKBのググタス民) starting March 1st, 2012 on TV Tokyo.

For those fans who haven't been using Google+, Gugutasu is the short form for Google+ (google = guguru, plus = tasu)

The timeslot for the TV show is from 24:53 to 25:00, just 7 minutes long. If you take away the title call and credits it's probably down to 6 minutes. With such limited time I wonder what they are going to do in the TV show? Maybe something related to the AKB48 Art Club? Behind the scenes from the Art Club meetings perhaps

AKB48 no Gugutasu min (AKBのググタス民)
Hosts: unknown
Schedule: Weekly every Thursday
Timing: 24:53 ~ 25:00 (Friday 00:53 ~ 01:00)
Official Website: -
Starts: 01 March 2012

Also one more thing, there's a slight clash in the timings with Ariyoshi AKB Kyowaku on TBS channel (24:55 ~ 25:25). I'm not sure if this was overlooked by the producers or that there wasn't any other available for a 7min show.
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[JAKARTA] Details of AKB48's First Jakarta Concert

Announced during Request Hour 2012, AKB48 will travel to Jakarta for a live performance together with JKT48 on February 25th, 2012. This is AKB48's first live performance in Indonesia.

The "J-Pop Concert" is held at the Balai Kartini Convention Hall, and is just one part of the of the "Japan Pop Culture Festival 2012". In addition to the concert, AKB48 will also do a "Kawaii Fashion Show" on the 26th at the Plaza Senayan Shopping Mall.

Official Website: https://www.facebook.com/JpopFest?sk=info

The Concert on the 25th will start at 6:30PM, and the Fashion Show on the 26th will start at 1:30PM.

Here are the AKB48 members that will be traveling to Jakarta for the event:
Team A: Oya Shizuka, Katayama Haruka, Sashihara Rino, Takahashi Minami, Nakagawa Haruka, Maeda Ami
Team K: Nito Moeno, Fujie Reina, Miyazawa Sae
Team B: Sato Amina, Sato Sumire, Masuda Yuka
Team 4: Abe Maria, Yamauchi Suzuran
Kenkyuusei: Kawaei Rina, Kojima Natsuki

Here is the concert hall layout

NOTICE: Because of the language barrier, it is not easy to get information about JKT48 and the events in Indonesia. If anyone would like to help us out we would very much appreciate it.
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AKB48 new HP Campaign [Love PC, Love HP]

AKB48 teams up with HP again this season for a new campaign [Love PC, Love HP].

This isn't their first collaboration with HP, last year it was AKB48 members as [HP's Support Angels]. This year's campaign has Maeda Atsuko, Shinoda Mariko, Itano Tomomi, Kojima Haruna and the new 13th gen kenkyuusei Mitsumune Kaoru as [Love PC Evangelists].

Each of the members have their own 30 second CM. Their CM talks about "Since PC is an importance presence in our daily lives, we should be particular about choosing the one that's right for us <our needs>, and grow to like the PC we've chosen". That's the message this CM is trying to bring across by members talking about what they like about the PC they chose to the audience.

The CMs starts airing from tomorrow February 23rd. Meanwhile You can check out the individual CMs plus the making of the CM below.

Maeda Atsuko

Shinoda Mariko

Kojima Haruna

Itano Tomomi

Mistumune Kaoru

Making of the CM

This is of course a very big push for Kaoru and guess we also know now why Mariko posted a photo of Kaoru with herself and other members in her blog.
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AKB48 [GIVE ME FIVE] first week sales + Review

The first week sales are out and naturally AKB48's [GIVE ME FIVE!] grabs the #1 spot with a huge sale of 1,287,217 copies in first week. This is AKB's 6th consecutive million sales and 12th consecutive #1! Congratulations AKB!

Also they have beaten [Ue kara Mariko]'s first week sales of 1,198,864. The group keeps breaking their own records again and again. The single started out with 900K not their usual million sales in one day but then compared to [Kaze wa Fuiteiru] this single sold more on the next few days beside the first day.

Now onto the review:

A new and fresh song from AKB or AKBand [Baby Blossom]. I'm glad that its not their usual Sakura ballads, the song still deals with graduation but is upbeat with members playing various instruments. For some reason, I find the trumpets use the best in this song.

Sweet & Bitter (スイート&ビター)
[Sweet & Bitter] is a valentines day song! But I found it more sweet than bitter. At first when I listened to it, I didn't really found it so special but after some time, the song has grown on me. I love the chorus and its a cute valentines song. I wasn't happy when Selection 6 was announced but the song is pretty good.

The Special Girls A's song has already won my heart through the PV. It welcomes JKT48 to 48 family and I thought the PV was amazing. If you like the usual AKB generic song, then this song is for you.

Hitsujikai no Tabi (羊飼いの旅)
The Special Girls B song is a ballad and a really beautiful ballad at that. The PV is gorgeous and the whole song makes me a bit emotional for some reason specially the chorus. Absolutely my favorite from this single.

Jung ya Freud no Baai (ユングやフロイトの場合)
When I first heard the title of this song, I thought it'd be something upbeat but turns out it is yet another ballad. This is also Nacchan and Yonechan's last song with AKB. The song sounds like a lullaby to me, though the part when the snare drums came in brought an interesting twist to the otherwise boring song. The lyrics is about wanting to be with the one you love so much that you do not wish to wake up from the dream. Therefore Jung and Freud are mentioned in the title and lyrics of the song, rather interesting I guess.

Overall: I am practically in love with the SG-A and B songs, GIVE ME FIVE is a refreshing Sakura song from the group too. A very fitting beginning of 2012 by the group in my opinion.

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Maeda Atsuko To Release New Photobook [Bukiyou]

Maeda Atsuko will release a new photobook on March 16th, 2012. Titled [Bukiyou] (不器用 / Clumsy), it will go on sale for 1,800yen.

Bukiyou is Acchan's 5th photobook, and is taken in Paris, France. It's also her 3rd PB that is shot overseas; she previously went to Hawaii and New York to shoot her 2nd and 4th photobooks respectively

The photobook will include full-length photographs of Acchan taking a walk along the Seine, riding the metro, living in an apartment for the first time, walking around Champs-Elysées at night, and enjoying Paris in general. Some previews of the PB are available below.

She insisted on going to Paris last year as a celebration for turning 20 - this is a Maeda Atsuko that is different and more private than what we've seen of her.  There is no "this smile is Acchan as AKB48" or "this look is Acchan as herself", as this photobook contains a lot of her natural, "clumsy" self.  But as a bonus, she will still be showing quite a bit of skin in some sexy photos.

Preorders are already available on 7-net

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Sashihara Rino's [Soredemo Suki da yo] to be Released on Aki-P's Birthday

The release date for Sashihara Rino's debut single [Soredemo Suki Da yo] has been decided, it will be released on May 2nd, 2012.

And coincidentally, this day so happens to be the birthday of Akimoto Yasushi.

Sashihara Rino Debut Single
Sore Demo Suki da yo
02 May 2012

Sasshi's Avex page is here: http://avexnet.or.jp/sashihararino/index.html

So let's hope that Sasshi's debut single's first day sales record will be a wonderful birthday present for Yasusu!
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All 90 AKB48 Members In New WONDA CM

AKB48 will be pairing up with Asahi Drinks once again to promote their WONDA Morning Shot canned coffees. The new commercials will include all 90 members of AKB48 and will start airing on February 28, 2012.

The new WONDA CMs is titled "Message" chapter. The new CMs take place in the office, where the Morning Shot canned coffee makes all the salary-men feel refreshed to start the day. Members have also picked their favorite messages from supporters, and will share these heart-warming messages with everyone in the CMs.

This is the first time for any commercial that all the members of AKB48 are featured. Team A, Team K, Team B, Team 4 and even Kenkyuusei members.

Am I the only one tired of all the many OOO48 commercials out there. When I tune to a Japanese channel, it's like 1 of every 4 commericials has a 48 group or member in it. It's good promotion for them but too much is too much.

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21 February 2012

[HONG KONG] SDN48 to Visit Hong Kong for Handshake Event

SDN48 will visit Hong Kong for a handshake event on March 2nd, 2012 and take part in a concert on March 3rd, 2012.

Yan Oi Tong, a non-profit organization focusing on education and medicare for the poor, is holding a concert to promote Green/Environmental Friendly living.  SDN48 will perform alongside famous local musicians, both old and new.

Here is the list of participating members:
Kondo Sayaka
Chen Qu
Takahashi Yui
Kaida Jyuri
Nishikunihara Reiko
Hatakeyama Chisaki

The handshake event on March 2nd is free to attend. There are 1,000 spots on a first-come-first-serve basis.

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[Dareka no tame ni] Project Exceeds 1.25 Billion Yen in Donations

Announced during AKB48's [Kaze wa Fuiteiru] handshake event at Seibu Dome on February 18th 2012, a total of 1.25 billion yen has been accumulated for [Dareka no Tame ni] project.

As a result, on 11th March 2012, AKB48, along with sister groups, SKE48, NMB48, HKT48, will perform charity lives at their respective theaters.

In case you are wondering, the exact amount accumulated at the time of the announcement was 1,254,175,973yen. And in addition to this amount of money, 30 school buses were also donated to the disaster areas.

More details regarding this charity live will be released on a later date, such as whether it would be free entry or the money paid for the ticket will contribute towards the donations.

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Oshima Yuko to Appear in Film [Yamikin Ushijima-kun]

Oshima Yuko will be appearing in the movie [Yamikin Ushijima-kun] which also stars Yamada Takayuki. Yuko will be acting the role of a part-time jobber who is ousted by illegal loans.

After reading the script, Yuko, who is supposed to act out the fears of being chased by illegal loans, was fascinated by that view of the world. "I think it's admirable that they are willing to tackle such a controversial topic without trying to avoid it."

Yuko's role, Suzuki Miko, has to pay off the loans her mother borrowed and is chased for it by Ushijima, the protagonist. Miko chose to work in Deai Cafe, a world of desires where girls sell their time for money.

This film will be shown on 25th August 2012.

Maeda Atsuko recently received a Japan Academy Award for her role in Moshidora, maybe Yuko will be able to get one through this film? Well, I can only hope...
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20 February 2012

Kashiwagi Yuki to Visit Taiwan & Hong Kong

Kashiwagi Yuki will be visiting Taiwan and Hong Kong at the end of February. She is traveling to both locations to take photos for an upcoming Photobook, and will host handshake events at the AKB48 Official Shops in both locations. This is her first time visiting Hong Kong.

The event in Taipei, Taiwan will take place on February 25th, on the 6th floor of Eslite Bookstore's Xin-Yi branch, while the event in Hong Kong will take place the day after on February 26th, in the event hall of Dragon Center, located in West Kowloon. Each event will host 1,500 fans.

Both AKB48 Official Shops will roll out a series of merchandise limited to this event. Goods are available in the Taiwan store on February 25th and 26th; and Hong Kong store from 26th to 27th.

Limited quantities were sold at an event in Taiwan over the past weekend. Fans who registered on the Official AKB48 Taiwan Facebook for the "Secret Sale", where limited edition merchandises were sold, were also able to purchase tickets to the handshake event. General sales will start on February 20th.

Handshake tickets for Hong Kong were sold on February 18th, but fans started lining up as early as 4PM the day before. Here is a photo of the Hong Kong handshake ticket:

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NMB48 3rd Generation Profile Pictures

NMB48's 3rd Generation finally debuted on Saturday and now their profiles are already up on the official website. Overall there are 23 girls, which is quite a lot. Maybe management wants to give us Team BII soon.

It looks like a very cute generation. Judging from the profile pics alone, I am interested in Muro Kanako, Kono Saki and Yabushita Shu. So, who has caught your eye?

NMB48 3rd Generation
Akazawa Hono
Ishikawa Kokoro
Ishizuka Akari
Ijiri Anna
Ueda Mirei
Umehara Mako
Ota Yuri
Katou Yuuka
Kamieda Emika
Kusaka Konomi
Kushiro Rina
Kurokawa Hazuki
Kono Saki
Kobayashi Rikako
Sasaki Nanami
Sugimoto Kano
Takayama Riko
Togo Sora
Hisada Riko
Miura Arisa
Muro Kanako
Yabushita Syu
Yamauchi Tsubasa
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