As The End Of AKB Is Approaching, Let’s Select The Best Songs Of The Group

  May 3, 2012

After AKB era of J-pop started, I started to see weird Japanese language on Youtube, which obviously written by non-native Japanese speakers. These comments always make me smile as I used to see comments in English but they realized me that finally some people started learning Japanese inspired by AKB.
AKB’s popularity overseas is of course all because of Youtube. But Youtube itself can’t bring them money they deserve and though they are becoming popular throughout Asia, there’s no market bigger than Japan except China in some years later, which always make me suspicious AKB in Asia is more of PR mascot than record sales and show-business. That means basically AKB’s overseas activities much depends on Governmental budget to promote Japanese culture to the world (mainly Asia), and it’s proved by various media reports. But I think if this promotion means just to increase population who enjoy AKB on youtube and not increase the number of talented young people who come to study and work in Japan, I have to oppose Japanese government move.
Is promoting AKB in south east Asia help Japan hedge talented young South east Asian? My answer is no, it’s 100% no. Anime, Manga and AKB, these things may look popular in the world but it’s overseas popularity actually not at all contribute to bring job and money to Japan itself but rather it’s generating tons of piracy and imitations, which always bothers contents industry. In that sense, promoting AKB and AKB business itself (not AKB girls) is always suffering severe bashing, and even I, long years of AKB fan, also have had complex feeling about AKB’s expansion to Asia.
But at least those who are interested in AKB may want to visit Japan, and those people then again spread their impression about Japan in both negative and positive way. But my concern is as a Japanese expat, who left Japan 3 years ago, I think real Japan is not at all like AKB or worldview you see through AKB performances and videos. It’s not like AKB tunes are played everywhere or cute Ad boards of AKB girls are everywhere. AKB is basically a subculture which happened to be mainstream, but still it just got only a tiny little portion of Japanese main culture. If AKB fans expected full of Kawaii things or AKB things in Japan, will they be disappointed after visiting Japan? I know many American who come to love Japan much more after their visit to Japan, but also know so many people who expressed their disappointment.
Anyway, though I don’t think it will come some time soon, I think probably AKB’s popularity will peak this year and start decline because people are becoming fed up with them both music wise and business wise.

So let’s select the best song of AKB in order to make it easy to pass down the legacy of AKB from generation to generation….

Note: Since this page contains too many videos, it may considerably slow your browser after you played several videos. I recommend you to click link and watch them on Youtube.

君のことが好きだから/ Kimi no koto ga sukidakara

(I think many didnt expect I starts with this song…. but this man really knows the stuff!!! No I just tell a lie. This is simply one of the most widely appreciated song among both AKB fans and non-AKB fan music lovers)

Only Today by team A performed in early 2010
(if you watch old AKB videos, you understand not AKB but it’s actually fans who are great. Their mix, their call, they are fully expressing their love for AKB girls, which today can rarely be seen… Amazing stage isn’t it?)

Seventeen at Request Hour Setlist Best 100 2011, 66th song
(It’s such a shame that I was middle of working when this AKB’s legendary annual concert was being held… )

初日 / Syonichi by team B performed in early 2010 at AKB theatre

少女たちよ / AKB48 at Request Hour Setlist Best 100 2011
(Lyric and hook of this song is amazing. Dream big! Never give up!! Always try you best!!!)

恋を語る詩人になれなくて / Koi o Kataru Shijin ni Narenakute, S3 revue at Osaka

ハート型ウイルス / Heart Gata Virus

(This video makes me so much in love with KitaRie, but yeah, everyone is so cute in this to be fair!! I think this song can be evergreen idol song.)

君と虹と太陽/ Kimi to Niji to Taiyou at Request Hour Setlist Best 100 2011

(Lyric of this song over this upbeat idol tune always make me high. “One drop of tear flowing out from your eyes shines in 7 colors, Love is visible but disappears soon, Love becomes visible when you want to cry.”)

ダルイカンジ / Darui Kaji

ポニーテールとシュシュ / Ponytail to Chuchu

大声ダイアモンド / Ogoe Diamond
(This song may be the only song I can listen again and again until I die…. Everyone can find their respective favorite moments in this video. This song also raised the question whether we have to take a hard stance to those illegal uploaders or let them go to spread AKB to the world. Of course it’s a matter of balance but we should ask one small question before violating copyrights.)

十年桜 / ZyuunenZakura

スカート、ひらり / Skirt Hirari by Kami7 at Yakushiji Shrine, Nara
(This is da original Kami 7!!!!)

ごめんね、Summer / Gomenne Summer (SKE’s 3rd single)
(According to SKE-Ota, this song is Kami)

風の行方/ Kaze no Yukue
(Mocchii and Sashiko look like sisters… )

結晶 / Kesshou by NMB

High School Days performed by team 4 at SBD (Seibu Dome)
(Classics of Japanese idol tune)

約束よ / Yakusokuyo at AKB theatre

君に会うたび恋をする / Kiminiautabi koi o suru, A5 revue at AKB theatre

くるくるぱー / Kurukurupa-
(KK = leek!)

手をつなぎながら / Te o Tsunaginagara performed by SKE

飛行機雲 / Hikougi Gumo by undergirls at AKB theatre

 I conclude this post with my best favorite songs.

言い訳Maybe / Iiwake Maybe

While Iiiwake Maybe has the best tune and lyric, this one has the best MV! I guess millions of people entered AKB from this video thanks to divine charm of Kojiharu!

涙サプライズ / Namida Surprise

I once hated this MV (Sakura no Ki ni Narou) since I watched similar MV of K-pop song , but now I completely lost the image of the K song, I can feel genuinely, realizing this is just touching…
(*I don’t particularly hate K songs but they just make me uncomfortable)
(**Sakura sometimes implies death(graduation) and birth(matriculation), and it’s true to both of AKB’s songs of Sakura, Junen Zakura and this song…..)

桜の木になろう / Sakura no Ki ni Narou