Kyary Pamyu Pamyu

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Kyary Pamyu Pamyu
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu 20120707 Japan Expo 01.jpg
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu live at Japan Expo 2012 (Paris, France)
Background information
Birth nameKiriko Takemura
Also known asKyary, KPP
Born(1993-01-29) January 29, 1993 (age 20)
Nishitōkyō, Tokyo, Japan
GenresJ-pop, EDM, rave, glitch, bubblegum pop, synthpop
OccupationsSinger, model, blogger, businesswoman
Years active2010–present
LabelsUnborde/Warner (Japan, 2011–present)
Sire/Warner Bros. Records (United States, 2013–present)
Websitekyary.asobisystem.com
 
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Kyary Pamyu Pamyu
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu 20120707 Japan Expo 01.jpg
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu live at Japan Expo 2012 (Paris, France)
Background information
Birth nameKiriko Takemura
Also known asKyary, KPP
Born(1993-01-29) January 29, 1993 (age 20)
Nishitōkyō, Tokyo, Japan
GenresJ-pop, EDM, rave, glitch, bubblegum pop, synthpop
OccupationsSinger, model, blogger, businesswoman
Years active2010–present
LabelsUnborde/Warner (Japan, 2011–present)
Sire/Warner Bros. Records (United States, 2013–present)
Websitekyary.asobisystem.com

Kiriko Takemura (竹村 桐子 Takemura Kiriko?, born January 29, 1993), known by her stage name Kyary Pamyu Pamyu (きゃりーぱみゅぱみゅ Kyarī Pamyu Pamyu?), is a Japanese model, blogger and recording artist. Her public image is associated with Japan's kawaisa and decora culture centered in the Harajuku neighborhood of Tokyo.[1] She is also commonly known by her simplified stage name as Kyary (きゃりー Kyarī?).

Kyary's first single, PonPonPon (2011), made Japan's top ten and became known as her signature song. The singles Candy Candy and Fashion Monster followed. She has since released two full-length albums, Pamyu Pamyu Revolution (2012) and Nanda Collection in June 2013.

Though most of her success as a recording artist has been in Asia, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu has also gained popularity in western countries[2] due in part to internet videos which have gone viral. Media outlets have referred to Kyary as "Queen of J-Pop" and "Harajuku Pop Princess", and she has been photographed for magazines such as Dazed & Confused.[3] In 2013, Kyary signed a distribution deal with Sire Records to release her material in the United States.[4]

Early life[edit]

Kyary Pamyu Pamyu was born on January 29, 1993 in Nishitōkyō, Tokyo, Japan. She has stated that her parents were dismissive of her fashion choices as they developed over the years.[citation needed]

Kyary explained her stage name in a Japanese MTV interview. Wearing blonde wigs as a fashion affectation in high school, a friend began calling her "Kyari" because she embraced Western culture and seemed "like a foreign girl". The name stuck. Upon starting her blog, she felt the name "Kyari" — a phonetic Japanese spelling of the Western name "Carrie" — was too short, and "missing something". She added "Pamyu Pamyu" because it sounded cute.[5] She states her full stage name as Caroline Charonplop Kyary Pamyu Pamyu (きゃろらいんちゃろんぷろっぷきゃりーぱみゅぱみゅ Kyarorain Charonpuroppu Kyarī Pamyu Pamyu?).[6]

Career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Kyary started as a fashion blogger, and then began her professional career as a model for Harajuku fashion magazines such as Kera! and Zipper.[7] After achieving a measure of fame, Kyary collaborated with the Eyemazing company to produce a line of fake eyelashes called "Harajuku Doll".[8] She also began appearing in local fashion shows.[9]

2011: Musical beginnings and Moshi Moshi Harajuku[edit]

In April 2011, along with Japanese fashion editor and photographer Yasumasa Yonehara and Japanese (fashion?) brand 6%DokiDoki, Kyari Pamyu Pamyu participated in the charity event "One Snap for Love" to benefit victims of the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami.[10]

In July 2011, Kyary released her first promo single, "PonPonPon", citing Gwen Stefani, Christina Aguilera and Katy Perry as inspirations at that time.[11] The music video, a psychedelic tribute to kawaisa and Decora culture, was released to YouTube and became a viral hit, leading to it being reported on by MTV and The Huffington Post.[12][13] The single was produced by Yasutaka Nakata and is the first release from Kyary's debut mini-album, Moshi Moshi Harajuku, which was released August 17, 2011.[14] "PonPonPon" was released on July 20, 2011. On July 31, 2011, the song entered Billboard Japan's Hot 100 chart at 72.[15] American rapper G-Eazy sampled the song on his single "Lost in Translation".[16] "PonPonPon" topped the iTunes Electronic Songs Chart in Belgium and Finland.[17]

On August 3, 2011, her second promo single "Jelly" was internationally released via iTunes.[18] A week after the release of her debut mini-album, Kyary released an autobiography about her rise to fame titled, Oh! My God!! Harajuku Girl.[19][20]

Kyary Pamyu Pamyu's first single, "Tsukema Tsukeru", was digitally released internationally on December 7, 2011 via iTunes. Kyary visited Culver City, California on December 9 to perform in a fashion show and play two of her songs. It was the singer's first time performing overseas and her first time performing "Tsukema Tsukeru".[21] "Tsukema Tsukeru" was released physically on January 11, 2012, which included a special edition photobook. It was eventually certified gold in April 2012.

2012: Pamyu Pamyu Revolution[edit]

In February and March 2012, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu represented Japan during Japanese performing arts exhibitions in Shanghai and Hong Kong. She performed on 24 February in Shanghai at the Shanghai Expo Mart.[22][23][24] On 27 March, Kyary performed for 700 fans in Hong Kong at the Kowloonbay International Trade & Exhibition Centre.[25]

Kyary Pamyu Pamyu performing at the Japan Expo in Paris, 2012.

Kyary released her second single, "Candy Candy", as a digital download on March 14, 2012. The single debuted at eighty-nine on the Billboard Japan Hot 100, and later peaked at number two. The single was physically released on April 4, 2012, and sold 9,913 copies its first week, debuting at number eight on the Oricon weekly singles chart.[26] Despite it being her first and only single to chart on the Recording Industry Association of Japan charts, "Candy" remains Pamyu's lowest selling single to date.

Kyary's debut studio album, Pamyu Pamyu Revolution, was released in May 2012. Along with the announcement of her second single back in February, it was revealed that she was planning to hold her first nationwide tour in June of that year, as well as launching an official fan club.[27] The tour kicked off on June 2 at the Namba Hatch in Osaka. It continued in Hiroshima, Nagoya, Sendai, Sapporo, Fukuoka and finished in Tokyo on June 29. In July 2012, Kyary made her European debut by performing for 13,000 fans at the Japan Expo in Paris.[28]

Kyary was bestowed the title of "Kawaii Harajuku Ambassador" on 30 August 2012 by the Mayor of Shibuya.[29] Following a montage of her successes performed on a large screen, she performed several songs in front of a crowd after accepting the award.[30]

Then, in early September 2012, Kyary announced that she was collaborating with Japanese budget fashion brand g.u. for her new single, Fashion Monster. Fashion Monster was given a CD release date of 17 October 2012. Kyary was also used as the image character for g.u. after the announcement.[31] In late 2012, Kyary announced her first world tour. The world tour, titled 100% KPP WORLD TOUR 2013, began in February 2013 and lasted until April. The tour visited the United States, England, France, Belgium, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Singapore, Australia, and Kyary's native Japan.[32]

2013-present: International attention and Nanda Collection[edit]

During 2012 and 2013, Kyary began receiving more attention in Western media. Sputnikmusic listed Pamyu Pamyu Revolution as number one on their "Best Pop Albums of 2012" list.[33]

Britain's Dazed & Confused magazine became an enthusiastic supporter. Kyary was photographed by Matt Irwin for the magazine's December 2012 issue, styled by Nicola Formichetti.[3] The magazine also cited her video for "Furisodeshon" in their "Video of the Week" category in January 2013,[34] and named Kyary "The Star of Tomorrow" in August.[35] In January 2013, MTV Iggy called Kyary "the coolest girl on the planet" and The Fader called Kyary "the most exciting person making music".[36][37] Kyary's video for "Furisodeshon" was also named by Stereogum as a "Video of the Week" in January. [38]

Elle France promoted Kyary in its February 2013 issue,[39] and Kyary appeared on the French television show Le Petit Journal on February 11.[40] During this period, Kyari also appeared in the Swedish newspaper Svenska Dagbladet[41] and was interviewed on the British radio station Monocle 24.[42] February also saw the release of Kyary's first concert DVD/Blu-ray, Dokidoki wakuwaku Pamyu Pamyu Revolution Land (in Kira Kira Budokan), recorded live in November 2012 at the Nippon Budokan.[43]

In summer 2013, Kyary's television series TV JOHN! was broadcast in France on the Nolife channel.[44] In America, Paper featured Kyary in its July issue,[45] and she received her largest U.S. exposure to date in a lengthy profile in the Wall Street Journal the same month.[46]

A month-long exhibition in March 2013 titled "Kyary Pamyu Pamuseum" was held in Tokyo's Roppongi Hills complex, showcasing all costumes from her music videos and live performances.[47][48][49] In April, a deal for American distribution was reached with Sire Records, and Fashion Monster was re-released in the United States.[50][51]

Kyary's second studio album, entitled Nanda Collection, was released on June 26, 2013.[52] Along with this, she also released her fifth single Noriko to Norio. The music video is also a commercially produced video for a cellphone company in Japan.[53] Kyary performed her songs "Invader Invader" and "Ninjari Bang Bang" at the end ceremony for the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards Japan Awards, where she also received the awards for Best Pop Video and Best Karaoke! Song for "Fashion Monster". In late June, it was revealed that Kyary is working on a documentary film that is due out late 2013 entitled "Gekijou ban Kyary Pamyu Pamyu". The film, which will only have a one-day limited screening, is to also feature concert footage from her %100 KPP World Tour.[54] Internationally the same year, Kyary was nominated for Best New International Pop Artist by Fuse TV and Best Japan Act at the 2013 MTV Europe Music Awards.[55][56][57]

In September 2013, Kyary announced a second world tour and a new single.[58] The music video for Kyary's 7th single, Mottai Night Land (もったいないとらんど), was released in late October and received positive reviews from Western media outlets.[59][60][61][62] The single, produced by Yasutaka Nakata, was released on November 6.[63]

Artistry[edit]

Public image[edit]

Kyary Pamyu Pamyu's fashion sense is the subject of much media coverage. Kyary is often called "Japan's Lady Gaga",[64] citing Kyary's similar use of fashion to attract attention.[65] According to a review of her London concert, a press release stated "[Kyary] is not supposed to be musically talented. She is more about image featuring her creative fashion sense as one of the main subjects of her career, not just the music."[66] She has recently cited American singers Gwen Stefani, Katy Perry and Lady Gaga as her inspirations in both music and fashion.[67]

Her fashion sense has also been criticized. While being interviewed on TV Asahi‘s “Music Station“, Kyary was wearing an oversized ribbon on her head, which blocked Japanese boy band Kanjani8 for being seen on camera, angering fans of Kanjani8 for her outrageous fashion style. She later stated that when she is being interviewed on television, she will restrict for what she is wearing, which her fans were angered about.[65] Her fans, however, defended her wearing the outfit.[65] Pamyu cites kawaii (meaning "Cute" or "Cuteness") as her background style.[5]

Her international success has also received much attention. During an interview with Kyary, she was asked if she meant to make music outside of Asia, where she responded; "At first, I didnt think about global markets at all. But even in Japanese, my lyrics don’t make any sense and have a kind of mystery, like on “Pon Pon Pon” and “Tsukema Tsukeru.” I can feel that what I’m doing in Japanese is catchy to global audiences anyway."[67] Keiichi Ishizaka, chairman and chief executive officer of Warner Music Japan Inc, commenting on Kyary's image to The Japan Times, says "[Kyary] is a person who came directly out of Tokyo’s Harajuku culture, and there is a growing international interest in Japan’s ‘kawaii’ culture,”[68] Many critics and publications noted the increase of popularity within the Japanese popular culture outside of Japan, such as its fashion and animation, and Kyary Pamyu Pamyu is serving as its global ambassador. Ishizaka believed that with the advent of the Internet, there is no difference in time and distance among countries anymore."[68]

As a musical entertainer, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu has been recognized as the "J-Pop Princess" or "Harajuku Pop Princess".[69][70]

Musical style and videos[edit]

Since her debut in 2011, Kyary's music has been exclusively produced by musician Yasutaka Nakata of electronic music duo Capsule, which also produces music for girl group Perfume and once for singers like Meg, Ami Suzuki and SMAP, effectively categorizing her musical style under technopop.[citation needed]

I love grotesque things. My concept is scary things that become traumatic with their cuteness. There are so many 'just cute' things in the world, so I add grotesque, scary and even shocking materials like eyeballs and brains to balance out the cuteness. Kyary Pamyu Pamyu; interview with The Fader [67]

While reviewing her London concert, "[Kyary’s] vocals sound a lot more raw to Perfume’s robotic vocals live and in recorded songs [...] she worked hard to perform with her dancing (she does very complicated but weirdly cute hand gestures while she dances – similar to Perfume) and her facial expressions for every song were just perfect."[66]

In the media[edit]

Internet-wise, Kyary has been well known. Most of her success with her singles and other ventures have been notified via internet. As of September 2013, Kyary has gained just under 1.8 million followers from the social media site Twitter, making her the most followed female celebrity in Japan.[71] Her debut single "PonPonPon" is one of the most viewed music videos in Japan, ranking up over 52 million views and has been identified as a "viral hit".[12][13][46] The music video, which has been influenced by 60's and 70's fashion along with the main Japanese theme kawaii, has received huge media attention.[72] American recording artist Katy Perry had tweeted about the music, indicating that she is a fan of Pamyu.[73]

Many of Kyary's singles, including "Candy Candy", "Invader Invader" and "Fashion Monster" have generated over millions of views on the social streaming site Youtube. Kyary's single "Furisodeshon", however generated minor controversy in her native Japan, where many believed the video encouraged alcohol and smoking, in which her label declined.[74]

Personal life[edit]

Takemura is not fluent in English and she has a translator when she is giving interviews overseas or chatting with international fans after shows.[75] She is currently learning the basics of English.[citation needed]

Discography[edit]

Concert tours[edit]

Domestic
International

Works[edit]

Television
YearTitleRoleNetworkNotes
2011Kyary Pamyu Pamyu TV John!Herself/ HostNagoya TV[76]Japanese variety show
2011–2013SPACE SHOWER AreaHerself / VJSPACE SHOWER TV[77]Program about music
2012–presentCatherine, the thirdHerself / HostKansai TV[78]Japanese variety show
2012Kazoku no UtaHerselfFuji TV[79]Japanese dorama/ 1 episode
2013Crayon Shin-chanHerselfTV asahi[80]Voice
2013–presentNanda Colle TV with Kyary Pamyu PayuHerself / MCSPACE SHOWER TV[81]Monthly Japanese variety show
Cinema
YearTitleRoleNetworkNotes
2013Kyary Pamyu Pamyu MovieHerselfmovie[82]Documentary
Radio
YearTitleRoleNetworkNotes
2012–presentKyary Pamyu Pamyu Way Way Radio!Herself/ HostTBS[83]Part of the radio program "Kakiiin"
Others
YearTitleRoleNetworkNotes
2012 - 2013DAM CHANNEL!Herself/ MCCLUB DAM[84]Karaoke system program
2012–presentHARAJUKU KAWAii!! TVHerselfHARAJUKU KAWAii!! TV[85][86]Youtube channel/ blog

Bibliography[edit]

Awards and nominations[edit]

YearAssociationCategoryNominated workResult
2011BEST STYLING AWARD 2011ArtistKyary Pamyu PamyuWon
2012MUSIC JACKET AWARD 2012Grand PrixMoshi Moshi HarajukuWon
SPACE SHOWER Music Video Awards 2012Special AwardKyary Pamyu PamyuWon
45th Wired Japan Grand PrixWon
54th Japan Record AwardWon
VOGUE JAPAN Women of the Year 2012StylistWon
Best Dressed Award 2012International
2013Japanese CD Shop Association AwardsThe CD Shop Grand PrizePamyu Pamyu Revolution2nd Place
Space Shower Music Video AwardsVideo of the YearTsukematsukeru
Rekochoku Best March Month Music AwardDownload (Single)Ninjari Bang Bang
Ring Song
MTV Video Music Awards JapanBest Pop VideoFashion MonsterWon
Best Karaoke SongWon
Fuse TV[56][57]Best New International Pop ArtistKyary Pamyu PamyuNominated
2013 MTV Europe Music Awards[55]Best Japanese ActKyary Pamyu PamyuNominated
Mnet Asian Music AwardsAsian ArtistKyary Pamyu PamyuWon
Japan Record AwardsBest SongNinja Re Bang BangWon
Best AlbumNanda CollectionWon

References[edit]

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External links[edit]