~「TGIF!」Idol♥’s unzipped on way back Fridays (Volume 46)

Idols unzipped...

Happy Aloooha~♥ Friday!!

Nagasaku Hiromi UK. ASAGAN shashinshuu

Ever had a crush~♥ on a celebrity? And that celebrity just happens to be a member of a most popular band? Well for Nagasaku Hiromi who’s best known for her modeling and award winning acting in both movies and dramas, that celebrity/ band member crush came rather in the form of celebrity crush  on celebrity as Nagasaku herself is pure celebrity! And that band member I’ve mentioned? Well it was none other than Mr.Children drummer Suzuki Hideya!! And this coupled relationship was happening way back in the latter 90’s and into the early millennium and from an interview from back in those days I read Nagasaku Hiromi expressing the details of just how they happened to meet originally. Well it seems that Nagasaku had a crush on the man bashing the skins for Mr.Children and actually went to attend a concert which just happened to create the venue of their very first meeting! And while Nagasaku Hiromi’s now happily married to another, it’s still nice to reminisce of just how thrilled I was back then to learn of such a chance encounter which began with just a crush but became so much more in a sort of fairy tale aura of ways….as you just never know as your crush may indeed return those feelings you’ve secretly had till then and being cute like Nagasaku all she needed to do was show up~. Just a little sweet memory that I thought I’d share with you as you most likely already know of my insatiable Mr.Children♥ appetite and it’s also a perfect reminiscing for leading into tonight’s Unzipped♥.

Nagasaku Hiromi UK. ASAGAN shashinshuu

The photos atop and just below are scans from my copy of Nagasaku Hiromi’s “UK. ASAGAN” shashinshuu which I imagine is a bit of a rarity these days and that in finding a new copy. This photo book published by Bunkasha which is known for their let’s just say…spicier style photo books was released on May 1st, 1997 and that coming just a few years after the break up of idol group Ribbon.

Nagasaku Hiromi UK. ASAGAN shashinshuu

Nagasaku Hiromi UK. ASAGAN shashinshuu


Ribbon Ribbon was the sister group to CoCo dating back to the origins of the legendary Otomejuku idol projects as both groups debuted in 1989 becoming two of the most popular idol groups into the early 90’s.

Through auditions Otomejuku was born and from it expanded the creation of both groups and solo acts and while CoCo was indeed the cutesier produced and presented of the two main group acts, Ribbon became known eventually as the much edgier and rock~n~rollin’ of the two as many of their singles and album tracks moved from pure~j~pop into pure~j~rock into the latter years of the groups’ discography.


Ribbon was a trio of whirlwind talent with Nagasaku Hiromi (above center), Satoh Aiko (left) and Matsuno Arimi (right) creating a tour de force of vocal talent which saw equality on all levels as each could easily hold their own and appropriately the vocal lines distributed very much in the same manner with none being a central member for that matter. Hiromi, Aiko and Arimi also possess such vastly unique tones and nuances in their voices that identifying each of their solo lines becomes quite the simple affair after learning just a few of their songs over a short period of time and speaking of vocal ability, the trio of Ribbon till this day I believe remains as one of the most talented and impressive.

Ribbon Be my Diamond! 3 inch CD single cover scan

~Ribbon “Be My Diamond!” (music video)~

“Be My Diamond!” was released on April 7th, 1993 and was the second to the final single the group released. This song is within my all time top 15 J~pop favorites♥, really I think it’s that perfect and memorable and of course that catchy! And while I did mention the central member format being a non factor for Ribbon it does appear in a rarity for this song as Nagasaku Hiromi takes the chorus solos throughout the song and Yes!..her voice is the most sultry of the trio as you can clearly hear in this single performance! I’ve always loved the way this video was edited and shot with each girl on the outer reaches of the circular stage facing outwards and the inclusion of the play footage is pretty priceless too! “Be My Diamond” is one of the sweetest melodies you’ll hear complete with a nostalgic wink to the past in its shoo~bee~doo~bee~doo~wops♥ backgrounds and just the way that this chorus builds up so gradually and melodically perfect, it’s not unlike a musical~note orgasm* when Nagasaku Hiromi starts hitting those ever so strong and heartfelt lyrics “….itsuka kitto….”


~Inoue♥Mao music seal of approval~

And Yes! both songs here without question have received the ‘coveted’ =P Maochan Music Seal of Approval ^^。

Ribbon Sensational Wind 3 inch CD single cover scan

~Ribbon “S”ENSATIONAL WIND (music video)~

“S”ENSATIONAL WIND was released on September 2nd 1992 and was Ribbon’s 10th single release. “S”ENSATIONAL WIND is also a member of my all time top 15 J~pop favorites♥!..and for all of the very same reasons mentioned just prior for “Be My Diamond!” This song’s composition structure is just awesome!!! Love the classic ‘beach’ styled guitars and the way the bass thumps and jogs into a perfect driving rock cradle beneath it all, and as always with Ribbon, the girls’ voices here so immaculate in both harmonies and solo throughout! This video’s really cool too as it was shot with a camcorder look for much of it and you can really learn Hiromi, Aiko and Arimi’s personalities as this music video is pure candid fun all the time x’s ten!

my Ribbon singles collection complete….

Ribbon singles collection complete

..and my Ribbon album collection complete~.

Ribbon album collection complete

If you’re interested in hearing and seeing more of Ribbon, I could expand upon this post to be much more inclusive of their discography in both videos and mp3’s, that though would be dependent on the response if any to this post ^^。

About MorningBerryz

Lover and free spirit who's interests in Japanese culture and the like are insatiable. I am of pure Japanese/Okinawan descent, love my cats, sleep and am a bit naughty at times :).
This entry was posted in Idols♥ unzipped, Japanese idols, J~Pop and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

34 Responses to ~「TGIF!」Idol♥’s unzipped on way back Fridays (Volume 46)

  1. ioniamartin says:

    Happy friday to you! I have totally had celebrity crushes. lol. I’m not afraid to admit it!


  2. mikeymikez says:

    Happy Friday dear!

    Love this post and want more of course!! ❤

    You know that Jake the ukulele guy has his documentary on PBS?! Have u seen it?? Awesomeness 🙂


    • Ahh Happy Saturday~♡!

      Lol are you just saying that? =P

      I haven’t seen his documentary yet, but I did meet Jake once at an instore event years ago…he plays incredibly just never knew that such things could be done with a ukulele =O!!!…and he’s really popular in Japan too \(^o^)/!


  3. philipleslie says:

    I enjoyed this post a lot, and it’s so lovely to be able to the CDs, especially the singles: ‘Silent Summer’ is a great song. I’m so happy that fans have uploaded several Ribbon tracks onto YouTube!


    • It was a real hunt trying to track down every one of their albums and singles and amazingly too a few of them are even first pressings with special additions and packaging.

      Back in the summer of 2003 I did a complete Ribbon favorite songs list and it was funny as I had had every one of their songs going on repeat for the previous week or so just so that I could rank them in proper order of liking:

      1. Taiyou ni hi wo tsukete
      2. “S”ensational Wind
      3. Be My Diamond!
      4.Anoko ni yoroshiku
      5. Sayonara ga owaru made
      6. Mittsu no negai
      7. Virgin Snow
      8. Heart dake ga universe
      9. Happy End
      10. Naitari mo suru
      11. Do you remember me?
      12. Manatsu no feministo
      13. Yume miru youni de aetara
      14. Wish!
      15. Yoake nante iranai
      16. Deep Breath
      17. Merry kiss, holy smile
      18. Sore wa iwanai yakusoku
      19. Sayonara
      20. garasu no ue no broken
      21. Ki ni naru anata
      22. Yasashii uta
      23. Mou ichido aitakute
      24. Yukkuri to suki
      25. Silent Summer
      26. Deaette yokatta
      27. Koko kara no kankei
      28. Wakatte nai ne
      29. Ai no diary
      30. Sotsugyou
      31. Circus parade
      32. Koko ni oide
      33. soba ni iru
      34. Poka poka aishiteru no
      35. Station Break
      36. taiyou no yukue
      37. Ashita ga matteru kara
      38. Arashi no kuchibiru~kaze wo mita ano oka de
      39. Hishochi no kaze
      40. Merry Hurry de aishite
      41. Yappari “Ribbon” wa yamerarenai
      42. Bubble
      43. Mosubii
      44. Suki to ieru kimochi
      45. sotsugyou ryokou
      46. Tadashii heart no yukue
      47. Kitto wasurenai
      48. Yume saemo mirenai
      49. Namida wa wasureta koro ni
      50. Ai
      51. Anata no soba ni
      52. Boy’s Dream Days
      53. Moon Venus
      54. Little Date
      55. Heartbreak
      56. Anettai beads
      57. Aishite justice
      58. Lady Love
      59. tabi no oufukuken
      60. Futte mo iiyo
      61. Poison no taikustu
      62. Kimi naraba daijoubu
      63. Hanagara no suriru
      64. Lithograph
      65. Nabekakomi
      66. Maybe, Ok!!
      67. Seikimatsu no tenshi
      68. After school 4 o’clock
      69. Heart wo otoshite
      70. Stay with me
      71. Taiyou wo kiite
      72. Sekaide ichiban kirei na hi
      73. Shigatsu no silhouette
      74. rakuen e ikou
      75. Bad Boyfriend
      76. 1/2 no ticket
      77. Kanashii hou no uso
      78. Mayonaka no darling
      79. Shelly~hoshizora no batoru wa, ai no purorougu~
      80. Hen an ai no katachi
      81. Gold Story
      82. Lady (shukujo) ni naritai
      83. Yurusenai!!
      84. Let’s Go


      • philipleslie says:

        That’s an impressive list. Do you know if Ribbon, Wink and Qlair (etc) albums are easy to find in Japanese stores? Lots and mainstream Western 80s music is still readily and cheaply available on LP over here, although vinyl copies are often imperfect. Interesting things do seem to turn up on eBay if you search regularly, but these amazing bands are elusive. I’m wondering if there’s a fantastic record shop somewhere filled with such goodies…


        • Okay this is great!..a wonderful 2nd hand shop in Japan run by Takahashi Masahiko which friends and I have shopped at for years finding countless rare items is Otokichi Premium!!!! You can send him a ‘wants list’ and he’ll do his very best to find the releases you’re looking for, he’s really personable and most helpful too a real wonderful guy. He’s helped me complete my Ribbon and CoCo collections over the years as it’s amazing what he can find for you if he doesn’t already have them in stock readily. You can search his site in English and find artists/albums to your liking which you’ve been looking for. In fact I just looked and he has Ribbon’s Silent Summer and Soba ni iru singles right now as well as their album Jessica!!

          Here’s a direct link to Ribbon:


          and a direct link to his wonderful shop:



          • philipleslie says:

            Thank you so much. I clicked on the link you provided. Looks such an amazing site. Now I’ll never get round to finishing those short stories I’m supposed to be writing…


            • =D! He has the best selection you’ll find of used music anywhere I think! And you’ll be amazed at what he can help find for you, you just give him your list and he’ll e-mail you back when he does get them and in my experience he finds just about everything your heart can desire. lol now my secret’s out….this is your one stop shop for all things J-pop which are out of print or rare.

              Happy shopping (*´∀`) うれしー!


        • Okay you’re going to freak!!! Otokichi has a lot and I mean a lot of Tanimura Yumi releases in stock right now!!!!!!!



        • You can begin to complete your CoCo collection here too, he has lots of CoCo in stock as well!!:


          So happy you asked! He can get vinyl releases too and he may already have them readily in stock.

          No doubt this is the best used record store in Japan that I’ve ever shopped at.


          • philipleslie says:

            What an excellent store! Thank you again. I’ve been searching for such a shop for ages. I was then about to tumble into bed (it’s late night here: you must be mid-morning tomorrow), but will stay up and do some record browsing for a while…


            • If you travel to Japan you can visit Masahiko~san too, he has a Facebook where he posts about all of the visitors her gets most of which are from outside of Japan..he’s really wonderful. You’re so welcome! When we were speaking earlier it never dawned on me to link his shop…stupid of me (*>ω<)、it must be I think 11:27 pm there? I'm bad with time zones xD. I'm sure you'll find lots to shop for, so many rare treasures he has in his shops! I do apologize in advance to your wallet though, I've spent a lot there too collecting (*´∀`)。


              • philipleslie says:

                My wallet is definitely scowling at me. I’ve just mailed for shipping estimate for Prism and Sweet and Bitter albums. The shop would definitely be on the itinerary of a Japan visit.
                We’re on British Summer Time here, so the clocks moved one hour ahead in the Spring. When they change back in October, Japan will be 9 hours ahead, and you will be…12, I think. I will look that up in the morning. It’s very warm and humid here at the moment. We’ve had temperatures of 25-30 for the past few weeks. It’s surprising how quickly you get used to it, though. Severe thunderstorms had been predicted for today, but they never happened. I’m sure your weather is just perfect most of the time.


                • Yay you’re getting CoCo and Tanimura Yumi~♥! The photos in Sweet and Bitter are so gorgeous! you’re going to love this album so much! The solo songs are really wonderful especially Rieko’s….”Sennen no biyaku” and I love that they have music videos too for those songs! Let’s see favorites from Sweet and Bitter would be: “Minna daijoubu”, “You’re my treasure~tooi yakusoku”, “kokoro no shozai”, “chiisana ippo de” and “kore kara” again this entire album is great! A wonderful swan song for CoCo. I so know the feeling..I have impulsive purchases all the time with j-pop xD! Oh it’s like our daylight savings time although we don’t practice that in Hawaii so our clocks never change. It’s been really warm here too…I have the fans on all the time sounds really warm there too.


                  • philipleslie says:

                    Can’t wait for it to arrive through the letterbox! And I’ve just remembered I’ve two eBay bids coming up in 3 hours… Hopefully I won’t be outbid while I’m sleeping.


                    • A~h I hate it whenever an auction ends when it’s bedtime xD….I usually set a high maximum bid but I still worry endlessly if it’s something I really want. In the past I’ve stayed up all sleepy eyed just to be online when it ends. It’s like Christmas year round whenever you have winning auctions coming your way as you check your mail box each day in anticipation, good night Philip it’s been wonderful conversing with you this evening and I hope you find many more treasures too ^ ^。


                    • philipleslie says:

                      …and now it’s morning already (so it must be mid evening for you). It was wonderful chatting with you, too. Guess what I forgot to do, though…actually place the eBay bids!! The two CDs were at the top of my watch list and I’d got it into my head that I’d made the bids. Never mind, there’s a good chance they’ll be relisted later this week.


                    • Ohayou gozaimasu~♥ Oh no I feel responsible =(…I can be a chatterbox at times I’m so sorry. It’s odd that I’ve just gotten back online after dinner and now you’re back awake….our time difference is mind boggling.


                    • philipleslie says:

                      Not your fault at all! Don’t worry. I loved chatting with you. As for the time difference, I find it really exciting. The internet is so amazing for communication.
                      And shopping, of course!


                    • I’m so relieved, still be badly about that though xD. It’s been wonderful meeting you really, we have so much interests in common and with the CoCo/Ribbon/Qlair/Tanimura Yumi connection I’m just blown away by that!!…I mean those golden age J-pop artists, it’s just so difficult finding fellow fans who are equally enthusiastic about their music too. You’re like a world of time ahead of here…Hawaii gets everything last including New Years. U~n the shopping! So easy to find things everywhere..although I do sincerely miss the ability to physically walk into a record store used or new and just be able to just browse in person the aisles of treasure!


            • I just wanted to add that the CoCo DVD you saw listed which sold out….well first I’m guessing when you said first concert you’re referring to their “Heart-to-Heart” concert DVD? And if so this DVD is part of a box set of 8 DVDs which was sold a about four years ago and it includes eight of their releases which were prior only available on laserdisc and VHS so it’s a pretty amazing box set! It’s sadly out of print now but you can see its listing here:


              Quite pricey at 30,000 yen but definitely worth every cent!


              • philipleslie says:

                Wow, that’s an amazing set! That would be a lovely artefact to have…one day! Thank you for the link. I was pleased to discover that the DVD I’d originally spotted is still available! I was simply looking in the wrong place. I expect you have this already in some form or another.
                I’m amazed by how many laser discs there are available. They never really took off in the UK; not in the same way that DVD did.


                • This is really cool and while I do have its contents in other DVDs they’ve released this collection looks to be quite inclusive as it contains their first concert which was originally released as a separate release as well as a release from Miura Rieko…I’m guessing it’s her first concert?..although I’m not sure as I can’t seem to zoom in on the image of the cover to read it. The cover artwork is just like the laserdisc my friend has and it actually contained their music videos instead as I also have this cover artwork on a CoCo VHS of mine so it’s curious as to what’s actually on it as it could be a lot of content I imagine =). In any case I hope you got it! U~n laserdiscs were around when I was really little but my parents didn’t have any nor a player in our home but I did have friends whom had invested in this format and some of them quite a lot too! They always reminded me of record vinyl albums with their full size sleeves and even the way the actual discs looked were very record like which was cool. I remember when they were getting phased out and so many people were running to stores to buy out the rest of whatever was left of them =O.


                  • philipleslie says:

                    Laser discs look more robust than DVD: I’m not sure if this is true. You can still find players quite easily in the UK, and cheaply too… As for Nagasaku Hiromi, I really like her first album, N, both for her singing, and for the songs, which are very engaging: sometimes infectious Latino, sometimes moody ballad. Are the other two albums the same?


                    • They’re really thick discs although I’ve only handled them a few times as I would be afraid to touch my friends discs as they were always so treasured and so rare always! That’s really amazing that they’re so easy to purchase there, I’d never have guessed that. I only have Hiromi~chan’s albums “N” and “Here and Now” along with four of her singles, one of which has the most unusual packaging. “Here and Now” may be a bit more poppy~driven but it’s still a musically diverse album for sure and a must have too. Gosh I haven’t searched for her other album in some time…in any case Otokichi would be the best bet to find a copy =).

                      I’ve been forgetting to ask as I’m most curious as to know how and when you first discovered CoCo? We’re sort of a rare breed of fan as far as currently active blogs go so I’m most curious. For me it was a combination of both their “Sweet and Bitter” and “Singles” albums being on the Oricon chart at the same time back in ’94 along with a most helpful friend whom shared and introduced me to so much about CoCo, their music, books and members…it was fun too as we would go together searching for more CoCo as we had always planned to complete their collection.

                      Oh and on a side note, I thought it’d be a good time to share with you one of my very first J-pop loves~♥…she’s Mochida Maki and she has the most pure and lovely of voices you’ll ever hear…anyway I explain it all in this post which has her song recommendations too so if you get the chance I hope you’ll give her songs a listen as I’ve included pretty much her discography in mp3 playable tracks there and I’m pretty confident that you’ll love her voice and music as well…oh and check out Tsunku in that live clip of hers it’s quite amusing:



  4. Pingback: ~ 「TGIF!」Idol♥’s unzipped on way back Fridays presents Encounters, Nagasaku Hiromi in Morocco (Volume 59) | モーニングBerryz48…the morning after….. "Always wear protection before reading…(^q^)."

  5. Pingback: J-Music Survey | モーニングBerryz48…the morning after….. "Always wear protection before reading…(^q^)."

  6. hi
    nice blog. please if you want and can
    upload all your stuff of ribbon
    I can´t find anyting of the group online

    sorry for my english


    • Hello,

      A fellow Ribbon fan! We are a rare breed! I was thinking of posting their songs album by album however maybe it would be much more fun to share all of their music videos here? I also have digitally transferred one of their concerts from an old VHS so that could be a totally separate post and perhaps one for the Idols♥Unzipped series here which I’ve sort of stopped at the moment….in any case please let me know! =)

      Do you have a favorite member? Mine’s Hiromi~chan♥…vocally their all excellent!!!

      Any favorite songs? My favorite song’s list is written in the comments here just a bit above =).

      Oh and how do you know of Ribbon? If you don’t mind me asking ^^.


      • hi again sorry for the late

        first of all I would love if you upload all about ribbon, their songs ,singles, photos, everything you have
        if you can of course I know it would be a hard work to do

        my favorite member?
        I´m in love of Aiko chan she´s my actual crush,(don´t known how she looks in this days,
        it´s a mistery for me)
        I don´t know maybe because I like girls whit deep voice (kind of like men voice, but not to much) and she has it

        My favorite song?
        well, in the fact I don´t understand any word of japanese, I guide more for the music and the melody
        i would say that the song I like more is 嵐のくちびる ~風を見たあの丘で~ Arashi no kuchibiru~kaze wo mita ano oka de (I don´t even know the meaning of the title)
        but there´s a bunch of songs I like, most of all that I heard on ribbon´s videos on youtube

        How do I know ribbon?
        well you know that they sing the opening of Ranma 1/2; and that anime became very famous in latin america, especially in México that it´s where I´m from, here tv broadcasted Ranma betwen 1998 and 2002, (for those days I didn´t khown
        that the anime cames from Japan) I was around 10-15 years old on those days.

        well, 2 years ago I started to watch online Ranma again, you know reliving old times, and I heard tha second opening whit a catchy tune but I did not care about it
        time pass, and one day looking o youtube for openings and endings for animes I had watched in my childhood (in spanish version o course)
        I click on a live version of ribbon´s little date and that was like hey I know this song?
        and you know, pretty girls singing in sailor uniforms? that nice; and one thing led to another

        whatchig and searching all ribbon videos on youtube, I really like the first time i heard a live version of Merry Hurry!! thas song has a nice bass line and the guitar is very rocking, and most of their songs has real greats riffs of guitar and nice bass lines convined whit a greats pop rhythms; It´s just, I really like ribbon!!, (rare for a fan of pure hard rock music that I am) whit the plus that the music is sung by three beautiful girls

        PD The Harlem Night concert in 91 is pure gold for me, I think they were in their best moment,
        I really likes all of that concert, the group, their beauty, the costumes, the band of suport, the musical arrangement. (Its kind of funny that in the year of that concer i was like 4 yeras old)

        I hope I have not bored you
        have a great day!!!


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