Almost six months after first disbandment rumours, SMAP is facing another critical point in their career. The band has withdrawn in the last minute from both “big” music shows of the season: “Ongaku no Hi” on TBS and “FNS Uta no Natsu Matsuri” on Fuji TV.
6 months ago, any of these shows without SMAP would be even impossible to imagine. However, the members had a thorough discussion with Johnny Kitagawa. The conclusion: no new song to be released this year, members are in no condition to give a satisfying live performance.
SMAP has been actively participating in both shows for 5 years in the row. Masahiro Nakai is hosting all “Ongaku no Hi” concerts, while Tsuyoshi Kusanagi was responsible for “Uta no Natsu Matsuri” during years 2012-2014. Both stations requested SMAP to join this year as well.
A source belonging to the production staff of the music shows mentioned, that the discussions SMAP had with Johnny were held several times over the last month or so. Since the disbandment news, SMAP has been appearing as a group only in ‘SMAPxSMAP’ on Fuji TV and during NHK’s special concert, commemorating the 3.11 Earthquake.
Although Johnny’s reps strongly confirm there is no fear of disbandment (next contract negotations are planned for September), it’s hard not to notice the tense mood in the group making the fans worried and bitter.