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Hitomi

From Academic Kids

The title of this article is incorrect because of technical limitations. The correct title is hitomi.

hitomi, professional name of Furuya Hitomi (古谷仁美) (born January 26, 1976) is a famous Japanese singer and musician. hitomi is known for her distinctively high voice, sexiness, and unusual fashion sense (although she has matured considerably over the past couple of years). Her professional name, hitomi, which she adopted prior to her debut as an avex recording artist in 1994, is completely in lowercase.

Contents

Biography

Born in Tochigi, Japan (but raised in Kawasaki, Kanagawa), hitomi got her big break while auditioning for a modeling gig, where she met eminent music producer Tetsuya Komuro. In the following year, November of 1994, she made a CD single debut titled "Let's Play Winter" from avex trax. Since then, hitomi has written most of her own lyrics, with the exception of covers, an example being the Bananarama hit "Venus" that she performed an English-language cover of recently, recorded on her latest single Japanese Girl.

While the first two singles, Let's Play Winter and WE ARE "LONLEY GIRL" were considerable failures, her third single CANDY GIRL was used for a Kodak CM, and secured a Top 20 spot in Oricon.

Komuro and hitomi went their separate ways in 1999. Though the reasons have never been explained, it is believed that hitomi wanted more creative control over her music and image and was tired of being treated as a second-tier artist by Komuro. In 2002, the two teamed up once again for the SongNation project for hitomi's part, "My Planet."

Many of her songs were featured on a wide range of products. Examples include "I am," which served as an opening song for the popular anime InuYasha, "kimi no tonari," which was the theme song for a PSX video game Persona II, and "IS IT YOU?" was used as a theme song for a popular FujiTV drama series dekichatta kekkon.

hitomi is a perennial favourite of clothes, cosmetics and accessories brands like Trussardi and Gillette for her modelling experience, photogenic pliant features, and slender, sexy figure, despite being a married mother of two.

hitomi is currently the spokesperson for Gillette Venus shaver in japan and has visited Hawaii to film the latest commercial on air in Japan.

hitomi was married to an advertising firm employee in the autumn of 2002, shortly after wrapping up her Huma-Rhythm Live Tour 2002.

hitomi spent most of 2001/2002 dogged by allegations that she was a lesbian, and in a secret relationship with another Japanese pop singer, Yoko Yamaguchi. Both hitomi and Yamaguchi have always denied the allegations.

The rumors subsided since mid-2002, when hitomi announced to her fans that she had tied the knot.

hitomi gave birth to mixed twins in May 2003; she did not release any details to the Japanese press, but disclosed to her fans (through her fan club, No!Cut) that their names were Sumire (her daughter) and Toru (her son), and that Sumire was the older of the two by 69 seconds.

hitomi was largely out of the public eye until 2004, when she released a new studio album, Traveler. The concert tour she subsequently embarked upon was a huge success, and she played to packed arenas at almost every stop. Her popularity came as a big surprise, considering that she is one of the oldest performers in Japanese pop, spent more than a year out of the limelight, and was married, which tends to hurt an entertainer's career, especially if it is built on sex appeal like hitomi's.

hitomi's 2004 "Traveler Live Tour" was the most successful concert tour undertaken in Japan that year, and the Excite search portal dedicated a special page to her.

Trivia

  • She popularised navel piercings among young women in 2002 when she appeared at a 2002 concert sporting a ring pierced into her belly button.
  • Contrary to many reports, she is actually right-handed, not left-handed.
  • In February 2004, hitomi found herself refuting allegations of a different nature. The Mainichi Shimbum newspaper quoted a 'childhood friend' of hitomi's saying that hitomi had been a poor student in high school who spent most of her time playing volleyball. Hitomi refuted the report, producing records that show that she had been a consistently above-average student who would have qualified to read business studies in a fairly prestigious university had she not chosen to sign a recording contract with Avex. Also, her sport of choice in high school was touch-rugby, until she injured her left hamstring, after which she switched to bowling. Hitomi is also a chess and baseball enthusiast, and a self-confessed 'gym rat', but she has never played volleyball either recreationally or competitively.
  • The famous Japanese novelist Haruki Murakami mentioned, in an interview granted to the American journal "Upstairs" in December 2004, that hitomi is the only Japanese pop personality he pays attention to because of her combination of self-confidence, no-getting-away-from-it sexiness, and the rare, unique honesty she projects to her supporters. hitomi responded by thanking Murakami, adding that Murakami's novels Norwegian Wood and Sputnik Sweetheart are high on her list of all-time favourite reading material. The Japanese media drew parallels between the incident and another, probably better-known incident in the West, when the Colombian Nobel Prize-winning writer Gabriel García Márquez commented positively on his countrywoman, the pop idol Shakira.
  • hitomi's own idol is the American 'Material Girl', Madonna.
  • hitomi is one of the few Japanese pop entertainers who play his or her own instruments during live performances. She plays the guitar. Her concerts are generally lively, high-tempo affairs with specifically-tailored themes, and hitomi is regarded as, despite her advanced age compared to other female Japanese singers, one of the fittest and most athletic of female Japanese performers.

Discography

SINGLES

  • Let's Play Winter (1994) - Did not chart
  • WE ARE "LONELY GIRL" (1995) - #61
  • CANDY GIRL (1995) - #15
  • GO TO THE TOP (1995) - #19
  • Sexy (1996) - #9
  • In the future (1996) - #7
  • by myself (1996) - #7
  • BUSY NOW (1997) - #4
  • problem (1997) - #6
  • PRETTY EYES (1997) - #5 - last single produced by Tetsuya Komuro
  • sora (1998) - #19 - first hitomi composition
  • Progress (1998) - #20
  • Someday (1999) - #25
  • kimi no tonari (kimi no tonari / WISH / MADE TO BE IN LOVE) (1999) - #13
  • There is... (1999) - #17
  • taion (1999) - #19
  • Love 2000 (2000) - #5
  • MARIA (2000) - #12
  • KIMI ni KISS (2000) - #9
  • INNER CHILD (2001) - #16
  • IS IT YOU? (2001) - #4
  • I am / innocence (2001) - #7
  • SAMURAI DRIVE (2002) - #3 - cover of a CUNE song
  • Understanding (2002) - #10
  • Flow / BLADE RUNNER (2002) - #9
  • HIKARI (2004) - #16
  • kokoro no tabibito / SPEED STAR (2004) - #27

ALBUMS

  • GO TO THE TOP (1995) - #3
  • By Myself (1996) - #1
  • deja-vu (1997) - #2 - hitomi's final studio album produced by Tetsuya Komuro
  • thermo plastic (1999) - #2
  • LOVE LIFE (2000) - #2
  • Huma-Rhythm (2002) - #1
  • Traveler (2004) - #2

COMPILATION ALBUMS

  • h (1999) - #1 - A single compilation of her singles from "Let's Play Winter" to "sora"
  • SELF PORTRAIT (2002) - #1 - A 2CD compilation, first CD consists of songs from selected singles from "kimi no tonari" onward and the second consists of re-recorded songs and bonus tracks.
  • HTM~TIARTROP FLES~ (2003) - #19 - A b-side compilation

See also


External links

  • Official Hitomi Site (http://www.avexnet.or.jp/hitomi/)
  • [1] (http://www.venusstyle.jp/top.php) A site by Gillette Venus Style Japan, featuring hitomi as its model.
  • [2] (http://www.excite.co.jp/music/special/hitomi/) A special site set up for hitomi by Excite.com Japan.ja:Hitomi
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