10 September 2011

A brief history of Johnny’s: Introduction

 I remember as a new fan of Johnny’s yearning to learn whatever information I could about the organization and being disappointed that there was not all that much information to be found on the older groups let alone the groups that came before them. Thankfully this is not bad as it once was and there are a few English language fans of the early groups of Johnny’s that one can learn about them. Even then though they are all of different quality and have their own emphasis on the different groups and even the best of them have gaps for the early years, as that era had a lot of acts come and go compared to the more static existence of the ones that came after.

 What I want to do is cover the history of Johnny’s & Associates via the groups created and debuted in a way that is easy for those who are new to Johnny’s can follow and understand without it looking too overwhelming. Also considering that we are coming up to the 50th anniversary of the creation of the first Johnny’s group which was formed in 1962, I thought it would be appropriate to do a project for it as it draws near.

I also plan on updating this as new groups debut in the coming years. Some terms I will be using in this:

Daisempai groups – This is for all the pre-SMAP groups and talents.

Sempai groups – These are the groups from SMAP to V6.

Johnny’s – either short for Johnny’s & Associates or for the talents managed by Johnny’s & Associates. Not to be confused with the original J&A group that was called Johnny’s.

Career debut – a CD debut that is meant to be the first release of many to come. A standout marker of this is for the group to be taken out of the Junior sections on the official websites and given their own section.

One-shot debut – a CD debut that is meant to be a one-time thing for a group or soloist. This distinction is made as Junior groups in the past have released CDs, which is often called a debut, with them remaining as Juniors.

 Some notes that might make reading the posts easier:

All names will be listed the traditional Japanese way with the family name first and the given name second.

I will be skipping some of the early Johnny’s groups and lumping the ones I do cover together as there is a general lack of information about them so it would be difficult to justify an entry for a group I only know the name of. I may go back and make entries for the early groups there is a good amount of information about at a later date once I’m done with the initial entries I have for this.

Sub-units will be lumped with the entry of the group they are from, for example Tegomass will be with NEWS and Coming Century and 20th Century will be with V6.

I have decided to give NYC their own entry. Even though I still am not completely convinced they are a career debut unit until either they release an album or Nakayama Yuma is finally taken out of Junior status and they are given their own section on the official pages like Johnny’s net. But they cannot be counted as a sub-unit either because of Nakayama and are not technically a one-shot debut either as they have released more than one single so I felt it was easier to just give them their own entry.

My focus is on the career debuted groups so outside of the section where I explain about the Juniors I will not really touch upon them in this. This is pretty much because there is so much change among them when it comes to members and groups for the most part and because of their numbers it is difficult to track them all. I may do another project for them in the future but this one will stick with the Johnny’s that have been promoted from Junior status, minus the exception that is Nakayama Yuma for the NYC entry.

 And since this is for new fans before I can get to the history of J&A I feel I need to explain an important set up within the agency, Johnny’s Juniors.

Next Entry > Johnny’s Juniors, full of rising stars and heartbreak 

Directory >
Johnny’s Juniors, full of rising stars and heartbreak
The Early and Rocky Path to Fame
Kondo Masahiko: Singer, Dancer, Actor, Professional Race Car Driver
Giving a New Meaning to Playzone, Shounentai
Hikaru Genji, Shining the Brightest and Crashing the Hardest
Otokogumi, Rocking It Old School
The Living Legend of SMAP
TOKIO, From Spaceships to the Over 30s World
Victory, Volleyball, Vegetable, Vicylce? V6
KinKi Kids, It's Not What You Think
Arashi, Storming to the Top
The Inseparable Duo, Tackey & Tsubasa
North, East, West, South ... It's big NEWS
Kansai Underdogs,  Kanjani∞
Cartoon? KAT-TUN!
Jumping to Their Dreams, Hey! Say! JUMP
Johnny's Black Sheep, Akanishi Jin
How to Debut Without Even Trying, Ikuta Toma
Kis-My-Ft2, Everybody Go (Roller Skating)!
Yamashita Tomohisa, Johnny’s Golden Boy
Entering the Sexy Zone
The 5Stars A.B.C-Z
International Ventures
Johnny's and Charity 
Odds & Ends

No comments: