|L to R: SAYAKA, YURINO, KAREN, MAYU, MIYUU & KAEDE|
Technically Happiness is a performance group rather than an idol group, much like how EXILE is considered a performance group. Which should be no surprise given that Happiness is one of EXILE’s “little sister” groups. But most just lump them with idol groups anyway so I do not think it will make much of a difference.
Happiness caught my attention when I learned one of the members, KAREN, was the younger sister of 7 WEST’s Fujii Ryusei. Though to be honest if she was not one of the vocalists of the group I probably would not have stuck with them long enough to become a fan. Which is why I am a fan of Happiness and not Flower, the group that has Ryusei's other sister in it. As like with EXILE only two members of the group sing and the rest are just dancers.
The two vocalists of the group are KAREN and MAYU, with MAYU also being the last member to join the group. Then the other four, SAYAKA, YURINO, MIYUU and KAEDE are dancers for the group.
The forte of the group is dancing, which only makes sense when only two of the girls are vocalists. It also means that seeing them perform is essential to see their strength as a group. Thankfully under Universal they get their PVs put up on youtube so anyone can watch them.
They also appear on shows connected to their “older brother” group EXILE.
As a performance group they have a mature image compared to idol groups with members of the same age. In fact it tends to surprise people that the members of this group are either fifteen or sixteen years old.
One of the group’s members, MIMU, is currently on hiatus. The reason given was the standard to focus on studies one so there is speculation on what the reason really is. But with her inactive the group is progressing on as a six member group. Only time is going to tell if she will return or just never be spoken of ever again.
So far the group has released four singles and one album. They usually have a bit of a wait between releases so if you do not want to follow a group that will swamp you with their releases this would be a good group in that respect.
Happiness also falls under the LDH (Love Dream Happiness) grouping that EXILE has for their girl groups. It also means that they are a part of E-Girls, the super girl group that is made up of the members of other LDH groups like Dream and Flower. Recently though they have changed to a competitive selection method for who performs in E-Girls as they have added another girl group, bunny, to the LDH line up as well as let trainees be in E-Girls.