Kyary Pamyu Pamyu and Mariya Takeuchi are two totally different artists, but both have made names for themselves internationally via the internet. Kyary broke out on the scene in 2011 when her music video for the song “Pon Pon Pon” went viral. A veteran of the Japanese music industry, Mariya went viral in 2017 with her 1984 song “Plastic Love”, leading some to call it the “best pop song in the world.” Patrick St. Michel of The Japan Times sat down with both ladies recently.
Kyary’s interview focuses on where her career is in 2018. Earlier this decade, she was on the road to being the new Queen of JPop. Now, she can’t even get her new album into the Oricon top 10. A figure that was once everywhere in Japanese pop culture is now being openly mocked in the press. So what happened? Why has Japan checked out on Kyary, while her international fanbase hasn’t?
Mariya is currently celebrating the 40th anniversary of her debut. She’s been busy recently with all the activity revolving around this anniversary, including fanmeetings, a new single, a documentary. She’s also trying to understand how a 34 year old song of hers managed to spread around the world via YouTube, which leads to a discussion on memes, internet nostalgia and algorithms. The interview with Mariya is very in depth and covers her whole career.
Check out both interviews here: