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Not To Be Negative... Just A Few Things I Wonder About

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Posted: Sep 26, 2009 3:56 am Reply with quote
桃ノ花ビラ 桃ノ花ビラ
Joined: 16 Aug 2009 Posts: 21 Location: USA
Pretty much everywhere on the web I see that Ayumi is the reigning queen of J-Pop. But her songs leave me cold. Ai's songs, on the other hand, always make me feel great. I have so much respect for Ai-Chan as a performer, songwriter, arranger... all of it. And yeah... I like her songs a LOT more... enough to say I really think she's more talented.

So... why does music that really sounds so much better to me fall off the charts, and the stuff that I can take or leave always stay on top? I'm not just picking on Ayumi either... I'm sure she's a really hardworking artist who deserves success. But I feel the same way about BoA, Namie Amuro, and a few other of the chart toppers.

Maybe I'll just never understand how charts work.

The other thing I was wondering about... does anybody else think that maybe it's time to drop the "J" from "J-Pop"? It's like saying "It's good, for being Japanese"... and I really think it's good pop that just happens to come from Japan. Good music is good music, no matter where it comes from... that's my opinion, anyway...
Posted: Sep 26, 2009 4:09 am Reply with quote
恋愛写真 恋愛写真
Joined: 11 Jun 2009 Posts: 1481
Well, Aichin is more than worth to get reign of queen of J-POP! Nod

I think, it's just now that her sales (chart) are not so good (anyway, she always on top chart Nod ). Smile

In the previous years, she always around top of the chart! Nod
Posted: Sep 26, 2009 4:32 am Reply with quote
Joined: 15 Jul 2008 Posts: 1690 Location: Osaka, JAPAN
I think Ayu's music are more difficult to listen for no japanese ppl (or at least ppl who never listen j-pop before, cuz there are fans of Ayu everywhere of course).

It is true that Ayu's songs make me soooooooo cold too, but see, she drops a lot in charts.
Exemple : Ayu sold about 3 millions albums for her third one, and her last one sold about 380,000 copies.
Ai otsuka sold more than 800,000 copies for her third album, and her last one sold more than 180,000.
See, Ayu drops, and more than Ai-chan, even if she still sell more than her.

I think Love Piece and especially Love Letter are more "occidental" album than her previous albums, unlike Ayu's albums. So u said, it would be great to remove J from J-pop, for some artists, it's ok, but for others lol... Tongue
pon pon
Posted: Sep 26, 2009 6:16 am Reply with quote
クムリウタ クムリウタ
Joined: 16 Jul 2006 Posts: 1011 Location: Melbourne, Australia
point 1: music that sounds better to you does not sound better to the majority of the CD buying public. yes, that is the sad reality. but i wouldnt be too worried about it if i were you. just consider this: over 6 billion people in the world will never own one of Ai's CDs. which proves the world is full of crazy people! Laughing

point 2: you may think "J-Pop" means it is good for being Japanese. i am sure there are people who think "J-Pop" means it is bad for being Japanese. personally, i think "J-Pop" means it is Japanese. Tongue
Posted: Sep 26, 2009 6:24 am Reply with quote
桃ノ花ビラ 桃ノ花ビラ
Joined: 20 Sep 2009 Posts: 10 Location: Los Angeles, CA
Her sales are something I've pondered as well. I'm not comparing her to any other artist, I simply am wondering how it is her sales don't reflect the quality of her music. I have LOVE LETTER in mind when I say this.

as for the jpop thing, I've never labeled Ai Otsuka as 'jpop', I've always considered her genre to be 'pop'. I don't feel that constitutes it being a different genre altogether simply because it's in Japanese.
Posted: Sep 26, 2009 8:34 am Reply with quote
ユメクイ ユメクイ
Joined: 02 Aug 2007 Posts: 1203
Maybe having the J in front of J-pop just makes it easy for other people to distinguish which language it is in? It'd be fair to say that a lot of people who are foreign to Asia wouldn't be able to distinguish between Korean, Chinese, Japanese or any other Asian language. As pon pon said, the J just implies it's Japanese. Not everyone freely listens to all Asian music.

As for your taste in music....does it really matter if your favourite artists are chart-toppers or not? I mean, sure, you'd wish for their success and everything but if they are successful enough to keep their music career viable then surely that's enough? That's what I think anyway...if the artists you support aren't successful and are forced to retire from music then it'd be a different story. That's what happened to Emi Hinouchi (she was dropped by her label) Crying
Posted: Sep 26, 2009 10:52 am Reply with quote
クムリウタ クムリウタ
Joined: 24 Apr 2007 Posts: 892 Location: Toronto
charts are sometimes a bad way to look at popularity.

Good example is rising singer, Nishino Kana under the Sony label. When I first listened to her, she definitely had talent, but struggled to rise up to the charts. Even doing an anime ED for SOUL EATER, she only managed to get about 30ish. Her album LOVE ONE. on the other hand was different, ended up getting #4 for first week and stayed in top 20 for a couple weeks. Now she ends up working with VERBAL and WISE a lot.

It just takes time and how much effort the record label puts on the artist.
Just looking at my article here:

and comparing with this article about the chart results in just 7 months later...

no lie =D

as everyone have said, if you believe he/she is a good singer, then put that person in YOUR top chart (lol ok that sounds so corny....)
Posted: Sep 26, 2009 2:05 pm Reply with quote
クラゲ, 流れ星 クラゲ, 流れ星
Joined: 29 Apr 2008 Posts: 10983
Different people - Different tastes in music

That's the way it is. Maybe you don't like Ayu, but other people love her and don't like Ai-chan. You can't say which music is good or bad or which music deserves good sales.
hitomi #1
Posted: Oct 23, 2009 10:49 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 17 Feb 2009 Posts: 1933 Location: On Ai's speed dial!
Yes, everyone's sales has dropped by a lot, too many reasons, Blank stare even here it's the same story except for a one crys because her sales dropped, er, except for me. Sad
Posted: Oct 23, 2009 11:26 pm Reply with quote
桃ノ花ビラ 桃ノ花ビラ
Joined: 06 Oct 2009 Posts: 19
it's not just ai that isn't popular. it seems like the solo female artists in Japan that used to be super popular at one point are all losing popularity. Ayumi, Ai, Koda Kumi, BoA..
Namie Amuro is an exception, because she regained popularity after basically flopping for over 5 years, maybe even longer. ai, ayumi, koda, and BoA all need to release music that will appeal to a lot of people and get people interested in them again. ai needs another "sakuranbo" or "planetarium". ayumi needs another "Voyage" or "Dearest" and Koda & BoA just need a new musical direction. they're playing it safe and not really "wowing" people like they used to, so people get bored and don't buy their music. that's just what i think about it.

hopefully they all can pull a Namie and get back on top again.
Posted: Oct 23, 2009 11:42 pm Reply with quote
Happy Days Happy Days
Joined: 26 Nov 2008 Posts: 120 Location: Singapore
noooo... i dont want ai to be another sell-out just to get more popularity and sales.. >.<
Posted: Oct 23, 2009 11:55 pm Reply with quote
クラゲ, 流れ星 クラゲ, 流れ星
Joined: 14 Mar 2007 Posts: 13565 Location: Tokyo
I wonder why Ai always gets compared with Ayumi, Kumi, Namie and BoA.... No They don't have anything in common with Ai.

I actually think that good sales doesn't necesary mean good music.
The title of "Queen of J-Pop" is for me the title for "Queen of Comercial Music"

I don't really consider Ai a "pop" her music she has elements of Jazz, rock, ballad, traditional japanese music and other music styles.
Anyways..what is the definition of pop?...the word comes from popular....and there's a lot of styles that are "popular"..I've always seen that the word "pop" englobes too many styles to be really considered a genre...I've never liked to consider it a genre

The reason I like Ai so much is because she doesn't make commercial songs (even if it's called pop)...the music, lyrics and arrangements of her songs are just a piece of art.
And bad sales and low popularity doesn't mean she's becoming a bad artist.
Posted: Oct 24, 2009 12:48 am Reply with quote
恋愛写真 恋愛写真
Joined: 11 Jun 2009 Posts: 1481
Aichin's sales isn't bad. And her popularity isn't low. Nod This is true. Nod
Smily in Seattle
Posted: Oct 24, 2009 1:38 am Reply with quote
クラゲ, 流れ星 クラゲ, 流れ星
Joined: 20 May 2009 Posts: 3564 Location: Seattle, WA
Okay, since I have not really followed many other artists, I may be off on this,,,

Knowing the way I feel about あいちやん、I can not help but to think that the fans of her love her more than the fans of any other artist. This said, 愛ちゃんsmusic is something that one neeeds to completely focus on which includes listening to the entire album or watching an entire concert. In the case of the album, they may need to listen again.

Herein lies the probable reason why she is not the top of the top in the world. Her art is incredible to those of us who have taken the time to listen to what she has to offer. If I were to have heard a song such as Pon Pon or Moso-chop, I would not have likely given her much of a chance, or another listen...

For me, it was in the context of the entire album (and her live performance of these did not hurt) that I was able to fully comprehend and appreciate her art, I can not help but to think that this is why 愛ちゃん is not always at the top of every chart.

In other words.. Had I heard Pon Pon suddenly on the radio, I might have thought WTF is this? But hearinhg it in the context of the entire album and seeing live, it becomes yet another masterpiece by あいちゃん!
Posted: Oct 24, 2009 1:53 am Reply with quote
桃ノ花ビラ 桃ノ花ビラ
Joined: 06 Oct 2009 Posts: 19
chokokokoa wrote:
Aichin's sales isn't bad. And her popularity isn't low. Nod This is true. Nod

well, it's at its lowest point now i think?

Smily in Seattle, i agree with you. that is how i got to appreciate ai and her music, because i used to not get it, and thought she just sang cutesy chipmunk style annoying songs. people need to take time to know ai and appreciate her, and learn that she actually puts a large amount of effort into each and every song. when i learned she composed/co-composed most of her songs i got an even bigger respect for her, but some people don't bother to learn about these things.
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