I really shouldn’t be touching this sensitive subject and adding my two-cents-worth to the cacophony on “group vs solo” debate but well, I’m a busybody and this is my blog. So.
In My Head
As a fangirl of a group, it’s normal to have fears of a possible break-up in the future. We have seen it happen to other groups, we are scared it will happen to ours.
Go Your Way
So anything that does not have anything to do with the group will be considered a threat. Like solo activities such as dramas, films, individual fan meets, solo albums, even endorsements.
Let’s Go Crazy
Then comes the fanwars. United we stand, divided we fall. It’s bias against bias. Bash here, bash there. Hurtful words are exchanged. Innocent people are dragged in.
Where You Are
Of course as fangirls, we go where our idols go.
Don’t get me wrong. I understand the fans’ sentiments. But when it comes to this topic, I can only speak from the perspective of Arashi since I have been their fan for nine of the 15 years they have been spreading rainbows, unicorns and sequins in J-pop. And while the J-pop culture may have distinct differences with K-pop, there are similarities as well. After all, the ups and downs of a fangirl’s life is universal and easy to relate to if you are one.
Arashi members have done solo concerts (Riida and Sho) in the early part of their careers, they continue to do individual dramas and films and promote these on their own (except when they promote the theme songs if they sing it, which they do as a group). They look at these as opportunities to tell the world about their group and expand their fanbase.
Let’s face it, they are different people brought together in a group. They need to pursue their own interests, live separate lives. They never even shared a house except on TV when they did Share House for their show HIMITSU, which was just a few hours of filming actually.
All or Nothing
Each of them have had the chance to totally leave the group and go solo if they wanted to. But as Nino said, between Hollywood and Arashi, he chose Arashi because it’s the place where he can be himself. So while they may have pursued solo endeavors, they still come home because they consider Arashi as their homebase.
A Day In Our Life
Riida described it once as like a family with members going out to do their own thing then coming back home, wiser, knowing more of the world and have a lot to share with one another. Their individual experiences enrich them and in turn, make their group stronger.
Of course my two fandoms are different like day and night but there will be things that are true whether J-pop or K-pop: talent is priceless, hard work pays off and that one’s success reflects on the group.
“Going solo” is not scary if you think of it as branching out, diversifying, gaining new experiences. They need to pursue their own interests, discover things on their own and make their own endeavors so that they will have more to contribute to the group. A group is organic in itself. It needs to grow its roots so that new leaves can sprout, flowers can bloom in the spring and eventually bear fruits. But in order to do that, they can’t be confined and restricted. To be able to nurture a group, they need to be happy, confident, fulfilled individuals first. Araeso? Araeso.
© Orange Jasmine Purple Yam (blogging since 2001). Unauthorized use and/or duplication of the contents in this site without permission from the author/owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Orange Jasmine Purple Yam with appropriate link to the original content.
7 thoughts on “[blog] oetoriya, oetoriya, oetoriya”
if i compare jpop groups to kpop groups, kpop groups work hard as a group so they can get individual popularity..but for jpop groups (at least i can say this for arashi) they work hard as a group and individually so their group will be well-known and can expand their fanbase..so maybe kpop fans are scared when one member get solo work because it means that that member can be more popular as solo and leave the group. I really dont follow much kpop so feel free to correct me. 🙂
I really dont get why you need to bash a member for getting solo activities, if you’re a fan of the group shouldnt you be proud of that member? This is why i’m glad i fan arashi..there’s not much drama like this..fans are always when one member get solo works.. 🙂
I am also just learning the twists and turns of K-pop. I am not used to the infighting among fans of the same group, I don’t get nor understand it and don’t think I ever will.
yes with Arashi, whenever a member gets a solo project, everyone’s like omedetou whoever it is lol but I guess it’s because 15 years have proven that nothing will topple the group’s loyalty to one another so the fans are sure about that.
thanks for commenting on such a touchy subject lol
Love the quote from Ohno..
yes, that ojisan when he opens his mouth says something relevant other than fishing after all lol
Ahh.. I am really glad you created this post. I need a reminder to myself how solo projects are done and what impact they can give to the group as a whole. Maybe, I still have this heartbreak for NEWS. From nine, to eight, down to six, and four. I remember how Matsumoto and Hamada joked about it in Hey!3x few years ago when NEWS got back as six members after being suspended for a year. It comes to reality now. It hurts. But it is a precious experience for a fangirl. Somehow, you feel like knowing your idol’s personality better when they have to make the decision. It gives difference experience to different fans. For me, it’s like an experience to have better understanding on human behavior. LOL. I just love learning it! Okay, it’s getting OOT here.
However, I still have no fear to love another group even though there is always a chance of disbanding, and probably experience the same thing again. I’ll just take my chance =P And, there is still these two bands whom I have loved for years. One of them have been my favorite for almost fifteen years. The other one, I simply can’t remember when I started loving them. LOL! Say hi to Laruku and Bon Jovi! xD Laruku’s members have their own bands, they were on hiatus for few years, even now they are on another hiatus. But they are still together. Same goes with Bon Jovi. And when they reunited for another single/album, fans are eager to listen to it!
I really wish the fans out there can be open-minded like you about going solo, especially the BOICE out there. For Yonghwa just had his solo fan meeting, and how he announced about his solo project. And how they are living separately now. Personally, I think it is important for Korean bands, especially the groups that consist of boys, to have solo projects. They are going to military service one day. The will have to go on hiatus as a group. And you cannot force all of them to get into the service together, right?
Probably, as you stated, their individual projects will give them different experiences and insights which they can apply to their projects as CNBLUE. The result may have various reactions. But it is worth the risk. They may broaden the fanbase. Who knows.
We, fans, may also find how much we actually like them in this kind of situation. Or actually, why we love them. I just really wish that the can keep getting better and create awesome projects in the future! They really work hard for that. And I also work hard to keep up with them, so I can have money to spend on their singles, albums, merchandises, etc! LOL.
thank you for this comment. you like NEWS? I didn’t know they were nine members before!
it’s tricky when you are a group because so many factors come in, not the least the different personalities. of course you’re brought up differently, have different views and even different interests outside the work that you do. there may come a time that your roads will fork into different directions. so as an Arashi fan, it’s really a blessing that they have come a long way all things considered. and I have seen in them that doing solo projects are not detrimental to the group but instead help them expand the fanbase and boost public awareness of them. just how many knew of Arashi because of Sho’s News Zero or Aiba’s animal show? I am thinking the same will happen to CNBLUE but we can’t stop fans from having different POVs. some feel they support a band only to see them do solo projects. ah well, let’s just hope for the best.
again, thanks for the comment and I gotta say, one of the best I’ve read! XD
Thank you, for posting awesome entries actually! lol. Quick info here. Yes, NEWS had nine members originally. Moriuchi Takahiro, the vocalist of ONE OK ROCK, which is now a friend of CNBLUE boys, was the first to leave NEWS. That is actually an interesting coincidence for me, as I like all of them.. xD