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Wednesday, 10 November 2010

[Article] 10.11.2010 Oricon Current Trends: Decline Of The Solo Artist?

It's not really news/article about Ayu but it does mention about Ayu and we should learn that it's not only Ayu whose sales become declining, but solo artists in general.

Current trends: Decline of the solo artist?

If you’ve recently been following Oricon and the general trends on the Japanese music scene, you’ll have noticed two things. One is the Hallyu wave (Korean Wave) and the recent success of groups such as KARA and Shoujo Jidai. The other is the trend of idol groups over solo artists with the explosion in AKB48’s popularity, Perfume’s utter domination of the technopop scene. Tohoshinki’s dominance in the early part of 2010. Not to mention mega group Arashi – or other Johnny’s groups such as Kanjani8 and NEWS – having a hit on their hands with every single release.

What does this exactly mean for the solo artist in Japan? In the past five to six years alone, we’ve seen the dramatic decline of once mega popular artists such as Ayumi Hamasaki, Ai Otsuka, as well as many others in their league. Now while this isn’t particularly a singling out of these artists, there is something to be said about the way their popularity is now as compared to these idol groups. And it’s not just Ayumi Hamasaki or Ai Otsuka – it’s about solo artists in general. Just take a look at Oricon’s yearly single charts so far. While the year isn’t over just yet, it’s shocking for most to see that only 3 solo artists have been able to crack the top 20: Fuyumi Sakamoto at #12, Masaharu Fukuyama at #17 and #19 respectively, and finally Kiyoshi Hikawa at #20.

However, all is not lost for the solo artist as they’ve been fairing much better on album charts. While this group domination is apparent in the singles charts, the album chart has quite a few successful solo acts to boast: Kana Nishino currently holds the best-selling female solo album this year at #2, with Namie Amuro at #4, and other entries such as Kaela Kimura, Hideaki Tokunaga, Lady GaGa, JUJU, Koda Kumi, Ayumi Hamasaki, YUI, and Superfly, all within the top 20.

As for the first trend, it will definitely be interesting to follow this into 2011 with the intentions of K-pop groups such as 2PM, 2NE1, T-ara, and BEAST to debut in Japan.

Credit: hellcat @ TokyoHive
Original source: Oricon
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