Saturday, January 16, 2010

100115 DBSK’s music and personalities, melting hearts in Japan

reported on the 15th, that music company Oricon surveyed over 20,000 retailers and online shopping malls throughout Japan to find out their sales performance and the results were that last year (29/12/2008~27/12/2009) DBSK earned 68,000,000,000 yen (833,000,000 won). This is a large jump from their unplaced rankings in 2008. Since these figures don’t include concerts and TV appearances it can be estimated that DBSK’s total Japanese earnings was nearly 1,000,000,000,000 won.

Even with the news starting from June that they are going to break up, Tohoshinki’s popularity is increasing. Their Japanese entertainment company AVEX has reported that their fanclub has nearly 180,000 members and is the largest in the company.

DBSK’s fanbase in Japan is different to other Hallyu stars such as Bae Yong Jun which is mainly comprised of females in their 40’s and above. Their fanbase is people in their 20’s and 30’s as well as those traditionally Hallyu fans and it is this diverse range which is a feature of theirs. The reason why they were able to capture the hearts of so many fans compared with other Hallyu stars is that they were given the great opportunity to go on the popular show on NHK, Kouhaku that has ratings above 40%. On the last Kouhaku which was aired on New Year’s Eve, they received more applause then anyone else for their second appearance in a row.

The Japanese-Korean relations expert at the Tokyo University, Kimiya Tadashi’s wife who is in her mid 40’s had a telephone interview with on the 15th and said “3 years ago, through my daughter I first learnt of DBSK and seeing them on Kouhaku 2 years ago, I started falling in love with them”. Their charming point was ‘they were different from the other Japanese idol groups which only focused on looks and dance; they showed dedication, not only in their music, and their personalities.’ What’s more their courteous images were viewed positively. She cares about them as if they were her own children. “Normally I would have tried to stop my daughter who is in her 3rd year of middle school if she liked a different group, but as she likes DBSK I tell her ‘Work as hard as they do.’”

She owns all their Japanese and Korean releases and went to Korea last June to go to their concert. She was delighted to say “DBSK getting their release in 3rd place [on the music charts] is the fruit of their endeavours, its evidence that their music and personalities transcends borders.”

Their music naturally spread the Hallyu wave and their position in promoting Korea cannot be ignored. Kimiya says “Through DBSK I discovered other Korean artists, at the moment I like Shin Seung Hoon, Big Bang and Girls Generation.” And also “I know many people who say that they want to learn Korean because they like DBSK”. In saying that she adds “DBSK is not only Korea’s, but Asia’s treasure.”

However 3 of the members said that their contract with their Korean entertainment company SM was unfair and tried to have their contract dismissed last August. News of them disbanding was never ending and so their Korean and Japanese fans found it difficult to hide their sadness. Kimiya was worried and said “Their appearance on Kouhaku compared with other performances was lacklustre.” Earlier in November, Kimiya emailed the Korean press asking them to show a greater interest in their case and criticized the actions of their company.

“The problem is that the issue with the entertainment industry’s old way of thinking and the working conditions that has affected DBSK are viewed as a problem only for the youth or fans not as something that has wide social significance.

The company has not taken the responsibility of explaining to the Asian fans.
We are being neglected.”

Even the Japanese press is giving much attention to the dispute between DBSK and their entertainment company. had the lawsuit and the fan’s reactions as it’s evening headline. Right-wing magazine recently had an article sarcastically titled ‘DBSK cancel fanmeeting, threat of breakup looms’.


Source: + DNBN
Translation: BlackCat @ OneTVXQ
Credits: { One World. One Red Ocean. One TVXQ! }

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