SMAP’s final performance, sings “Sekai ni Hitotsu Dake no Hana” on last episode of SMAP X SMAP

Legendary Johnny’s group SMAP has had their final performance as a group, performing one of their signature hits “Sekai ni Hitotsu Dake no Hana” on the last episode of their variety show SMAP X SMAP .

The disbandment of SMAP was confirmed 4 months ago after Johnny’s & Associates Inc sent a fax to the media. Since the performance aired SMAP has shot up to the very top of the twitter trends, there’s currently over 1.5 million tweets regarding the group/disbandment. Many of these tweets are from oversea fans truly showcasing the impact SMAP has had in the Japanese entertainment world.

The members of SMAP got their start in a group called “The Skate Boys”, who served as backup dancers for Hikaru Genji. In 1988 Johnny Kitagawa chose six of the boys to create a new group, SMAP. They held concerts and even had their own variety show before releasing their debut single “Can’t Stop -Loving-” in 1991. For SMAP’s final performance “Sekai ni Hitotsu Dake no Hana” was the song choice. Released in 2003, it became one of their signature hits. As of 2016 it has sold over 2.9 million copies making it the fourth best selling single in Japan.

Watch the full performance below.

What are some of your memories of SMAP?

SHARE

  • Comments

    • light

      I never followed SMAP but it’s weird to see them actually disbanding after all these years, i thought at a point they would have just done their own solo stuff while keeping the name.

    • WhySoLonely

      I don’t know SMAP as a group. I just know a few of the members from dramas they acted in. I’m mostly a KimuTaku fan.

      As a fan of Kimura Takuya the actor I’m selfishly relieved that SMAP disbanded. I hope now he’ll have more free time to work on his career as an actor. His last few dramas have been so underwhelming.

      Nothing lasts forever. SMAP outlasted about 98% of all boybands. They made their mark and now it’s time for the younger ones.

      • Nenad Jovanović

        Heh, also fan of Takuja Kimura , but I hate seeing them disbanding, it makes me depressed.

    • yamakita

      I have to say, this is actually sad. It’s a long history, but maybe now they can finally be allowed to be the adults they have been since age 20!

      • disqus_fnwCMQDX7u

        they’re still in johnny’s tho

    • This is really sad. I really started getting into them in recent years. :(

    • eplizo

      I’m really so sad. This is legitimately the end of an era. They were undeniably an iconic staple of jpop culture, so having it all come to an end like this…. :'(

    • sashayuuka

      omg T-T i remember seeing them on kohaku uta gassen for the first time performing this song. Now I’m watching them perform this song and deeply bow for the last time crii

    • Nick

      They’ve done so much to carve new trajectories and show that longevity is possible. When I learned about how their show SxS was pretty much the main platform for a lot of western stars to promote themselves in Japan it blew my mind. It was also one of my gateways to learning about other Japanese artists from non-idol genre music such as Toshinobu Kubota.

      For me seeing them with Stevie Wonder, Naomi Campbell, the Stylistics, MJ, BoA, Morning Musume, Dreams Come True, Namie Amuro etc. will be among my favorite memories of the group. Even though I’m a late comer to the group I Iiked their 6 member era with Mori.

      I appreciate the jazz/funk musicians like Nile Rodgers being allowed freedom to explore on some of their earlier albums. I wasn’t expecting the group itself to make phenomenal genre changing music and make way for new trends but I listened because I enjoyed it and it made me happy.

      They showed humility through a year of lies pushed by the agency and tried to drop hints throughout even on this broadcast with Nakai’s hand gesture so that some would know that it wasn’t like that. Even taking the time to ask for a donation for relief aid to those affected by disaster.

      I think they understood the cycle nature of popularity/aging and did pretty good even when they seemed “over it” in doing certain idol/entertainer things with a 24/7 type of enthusiasm one would expect from people that recently debuted to 5/10 years later.

      Even though they could have isolated themselves from the other groups and jrs they didn’t in non-barter interactions that can be seen or heard about even in later years. I think their legacy will live on with those they’ve inspired.

      • anarafan

        This is really well written and reflected what I felt. Especially this.

        “They showed humility through a year of lies pushed by the agency and tried to drop hints throughout even on this broadcast with Nakai’s hand gesture so that some would know that it wasn’t like that.
        Them not uttering one word of goodbye or thank you felt unfinished. But it is what it is and its time to close the curtain on their era. Good luck to new beginnings.

        • Nick

          Indeed, I’m looking forward to their projects next year.

        • Guest

          In relation to dropping hints, reminds me of mentioning Mori, their constant self-teasing with Goro’s and Tsuyoshi’s incident, such rebels, never change. <3 I'm patiently waiting for them (or Nakai the usual culprit) to keep dropping hints and breaking the taboo with the ~unspeakable things.

    • Meutia S Aishah

      I’m not really their fans, but I usually enjoy their kouhaku performance.
      I just hope that they won’t regret this decision and keep having a job they like
      and sekai ni hitotsu dake no hana is such a nice song, really

    • omg

      Ugh, they still can’t sing for shit

      • anarafan

        What do you expect? Nakai suddenly belted out perfect notes because it’s their final performance? At least they are consistent and sang live all the time despite their self admitted vocal in-capabilities. I might be an Arashi fan first but I always respected SMAP for their gungho live singing. They still listenable and did justice on great songs like Yozara no Mukou, Shake and Lion Heart.

        • anarafan

          Ok Shake is not my favorite, I should have listed Fly
          http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x4wylaq_fly-smap_music
          (Live Fly at Kouhaku 1999)

          (with Chihiro Onitsuka)

        • 🌸Sayuri🌸

          arashi sing? only ohno satoshi has great voice and the rest?…well is JE:…

          • anarafan

            Well the rest have better voice than Nakai :)

          • anarafan

            Oh btw as an arashi fan, my statement was a dig at Arashi for not consistently taking the challenge to sing live on tv performances.

          • lol

            arashi sing tho…what do you mean JE are not singing? not all has great vocal but they are singing lol

            • anarafan

              http://i.imgur.com/UkiugAc.jpg
              My post kept getting erased.

              • lol

                That Lai lai lai perf is one of my fave arashi perf though ono was so nasal lol…still bitter they dont release One DVD sigh

                yes they improve a lot now..their vocal at AYH tour is good XD

                • anarafan

                  ONE digest in arashic and a couple of fancams made me want the full concert more. It was an excellent concert.

              • GTFO

                Smap cheering Arashi in that Lai lai lai??
                You meant, only Nakai cheered for Arashi in MSte Lai Lai Lai 2005.

                • anarafan

                  Wow why so indignant? You can see them clearly cheering at the end of the performance on bilibili vid. Even during the performance at the background. Another clear vid is from alive.th.

                  I can’t post links it seems or it’ll get erased so here’s a bit of description. Nakai was the most enthusiastic for Arashi (as always) and was standing at some point. Kimura Takuya greeted (?) them in the talk at the beginning of the show and raised his hands after their performance. All of SMAP members and the other artists were clapping their hands in appreciation of an excellent live by Arashi. Tamori asked them “do you like Arashi?” and Goro (and kimura) answered “HAIT, DAISUKI :D”.

                  This was my most important memory of both groups because SMAP was my gateway to Arashi at that very moment in 2005. Mste once had an online poll a few years back (were voted by over 10k fans i think) of Arashi best mste performance performance and 2005 Lailailai was in the top 3. Personally I think because a lot of Arashi fans also treasure every rare moments SMAP interacted with their faves.

                • anarafan

                  Lailailai links. Omit the ( ) and change dot to real dots. Hopefully it won’t be deleted.

                  The clearest version but without the clapping and cheers alive(dot)in(dot)th(/)watch_video(dot)php?v=8HROKANN3KHW
                  Look out for 2 guys in white cowboy hats at the back. Takuya Kimura made high double guts pose and Nakai was fanboying.

                  The talk. Arashi just came back from their concert out of Tokyo and THE Kimura Takuya welcomed them back with a loud “Okaeri nasai!” and bowed, which was a bit weird for a senpai to do. So Arashi giggled and give thanks in return. bilibili(dot)com(/)video(/)av1566363(/)index_2(dot)html

                  The performance with clapping and cheers. Also featuring giggly Ayumi Hamasaki. bilibili(dot)com(/)video(/)av1566363

          • Midna

            They’re not bad. Aiba is very stable live. He’s probably the best after Ohno. Dude has got great stamina. Arashi is actually one of the JE groups that don’t sound bad when they sing together lmao.

    • I went to their concerts in 2003, 2005 and 2006. I don’t know about their recent songs but their albums at that time were so good. They may not be the best singers but they have so may good songs. Their concerts were huge and quite artistic. I really enjoyed the whole experience even when the seat was far way from the stage. One time I got a seat very close to the stage at Nissan Stadium. That’s my best experience with SMAP. I can’t forget the view of sweaty KImura kun running across the stage very very fast (I wasn’t his fan tho). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bXkFDmWUbR0&t=2871s

      • CPeiqing

        i am so jealous of you! Internet was not so advanced in those days for me who was not earning much to figure out how to buy j-concert and extremely few Jpop groups venture outside of Japan for concerts…. :””'(

        • Yeah, it’s too bad SMAP didn’t get much chance to perform abroad. They went to China once and that was it. You can still watch their concerts on DVDs tho. Their Live Tour DVDs are very well made.

    • honey girl

      I wish they could have performed with Hikki one more time. I always like the spins and dance numbers they did for her songs.

    • disqus_fnwCMQDX7u

      Honestly, this was disappointing. They didn’t say a single word, it was all just a retrospective. Not even any words after they performed. It seems rude. I know it must be hard for them, but they are still idols, they should think about the fans’ feelings. And it’s really disappointing they’re not going to be on Kouhaku even though they will officially still be “together.” I understand they want to make sure smapxsmap has good ratings since they are putting them in a tougher spot, but again, think about us! The week before with Tamori san is a more appropriate ending, since they’re actually watching clips together and talking about them and their career. Oh well :/

      • Risa

        You point out a very important thing – this behaviour is very un-SMAP like. SMAP have consistently gone out of their way for their fans. It is odd that there is no special documentary or in-depth interview with the guys. They themselves have said that they hope one day to be able to speak freely about this to their fans so if the behaviour is inconsistent then maybe it’s not the doing of SMAP…

        • disqus_fnwCMQDX7u

          I didn’t think of it that way, but you could definitely be right! It is suspicious.

    • Bruno

      “after Johnny’s & Associates Inc sent a fax to the media”

      LMAO, Johnny’s are vintage af

      • lol

        its common practice in japan sending out announcement by fax..not only Johnny XD

        • Bruno

          that doesn’t make it any less backwards, does it? =p

          • Tel

            Having fax doesn’t mean they don’t use emails and mobile phones though.
            Japanese households use landlines phone numbers as registerations and almost all landline phones comes with fax. It’s just them actively using an old technology. I think it’s convenient because the fax is personalized with their own handwriting or drawings and is printed out straightaway. With emails you need a scanner and your receiver will end up printing it out on their side anyway with a bigger probability of not being read.

          • lol

            yeah but ur statement only outlined Johnny that still using fax as vintage lol

            • Bruno

              ok, fair enough =p

      • james

        If u seen the SP, during the show the MC told the audience to sent their message to Fuji TV HQ by FAX. This just shows that alot of Japanese household still have FAX machine in their house!

    • Historia Lenz

      My mom and I love Kimutaku’s dramas, especially “Long Vacation.” I got into SMAP because of KimuTaku. Watching this performance made me teary-eyed. I will miss them. Thank you, SMAP, for making us happy. I wish all of the members success in whatever projects they may have in the future. :)

    • Lost In Ube

      The overnight ratings are in:
      6:30 – 7:00 14.1
      7:00 – 10:00 17.4
      10:00 – 11:18 23.1
      The peak was 11:07 at 27.4.
      The show, which had 919 episodes finished with an overall rating of 18.1.
      The shows highest rating ever was a 34.2 in 2002.
      The live “apology” show after the break-up rumor fiasco earlier this year gained a 31.2.
      http://news.mynavi.jp/news/2016/12/27/066/
      http://news.livedoor.com/article/detail/12468749/

      It was an interesting show. They opened with Katsuyuki Mori’s last performance on SXS (he quit the band the first year of the show but they had already been together for five years). That also kicked off the recurring theme of Nakai crying during Best Friend all the time. There was a one night only Softbank SMAP commercial.

      However, I think those ratings are probably a disappointment to Fuji, especially with the year they are having. If they did anything live, even just a thank you, not even a song, it could have and should have topped the apology show. The non-stop performance was from 2014 which means that Mori’s letter was from 2014. They didn’t even get anything new from him. They did acknowledge Inagaki and Kusanagi’s scandals and aired footage from both shows when they came back.

      This felt more like just the end of the show, not the end of the group.

      • aisasami

        I think it was just poor luck to have it on a workweek Monday that fell on the bounenkai season.

        I wonder if that those numbers are with those who DVR’ed it?

        • Lost In Ube

          They should have just ended on January 2nd. That would have been an interesting experiment.
          Kansai ratings were slightly higher btw at 16.9, 20.6 and 24.1.

    • Ztf

      That ending was very tearful to me, why they didn’t say anything?.
      Nakai breaking my heart.

    • Guest

      idk guys, maybe they’ll still show up at Kouhaku regardless. Like that one year where NHK pretended as if there would be no Ama-chan on the show and the show ended up being full of Ama-chan…..

      • Jinni Bae

        i wish you were right!

    • Do-tell

      When I lived in Japan, SMAPXSMAP was always my go-to show. When I started watching, I would hunt down every drama featuring a member. This gap cannot be filled.

    • S.M.A.P
    • Stef

      I really loved watching SMAP Bistro (found the show a few years ago when watching dramas) I’ve watched every week since then and always looked forward to the special guests and the meals they made. I even started learning Japanese again so I could enjoy the show better. I’ll miss the show a lot! But I think it’s time for them to have a life. Under their contract I don’t think they were really allowed to get married or have a family and now we have 5 men (except kimura) who are single and without a family in their late 30s and early 40s. It’s really their chance now to move on and have some of the things they have missed out on. I wish them good luck in their future projects!

      • anarafan

        “Under their contract I don’t think they were really allowed to get married or have a family”
        This is a myth. Johnny’s are allowed to get married (ie Kazama Shunsuke, Taichi, Innochi, etc). It could be many of them just haven’t found the right partner to share their very public lives.

        Also SMAP members are still in Johnny’s even if they’ve disbanded.

        • Stef

          Their contract is up so they still might leave Johnny’s at least a few of them…… the marriage was frowned upon and really with their schedules there was no chance to have time for themselves… I was shocked to see they had men at this age performing in an over 24 hour straight show and then do a concert performance afterwards. I’m sure they were just tired.

    • A true bop: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3iUUqQw-sfo

      It sounds just like a LISA era m-flo song! I can even imagine who would do what parts if it was a m-flo song. I wasn’t a fan of SMAP, but I did like how they actually worked with a number of different artists in regards to their releases.

      • 560

        Living Large is indeed a song written by m-flo for the Birdman, 013 album back in 1999. :) The performance you posted was a remixed version which kinda removed much of m-flo’s presence. The original version has some singing from Lisa and rapping from verbal.

    • An_dromeda

      SMAP.. u will be missed..

    • Erika

      Truly an end of an era.
      As much as it pains me, I don’t think any JE group will get to surpass what they’ve done :(

    • suezu

      im not their fans but this is so sad ;A; so emotional T__T
      goodbye SMAP

    • vivi

      SMAP is a group that I didn’t specifically search because I don’t listen to them.
      When I searched the member’s profile after liking their project, I actually surprise that they are SMAP, then I searched SMAP’s member list and I am shocked that almost everyone of them is popular on their own.
      They are that big and even if I don’t listen to their music, I know their song and their project.

    • Oh my, the tackiness!
      But now, that SMAP is over it is finally time for a long overdue… Shingo Mama comeback!