Hello Asia editor Johnny Au speaks to J-Pop idol girl group callme in Tokyo. The trio is made up of former Dorothy Little Happy members Koumi, Mimori & leader Ruuna. callme released their debut track ‘To Shine’ and the girls discuss the song and their input into its production. We also ask callme about their idols growing up and performing as callme for the first time. (TURN ON YOUR CAPTIONS FOR ENGLISH SUBTITLES).
Hello callme! Can each member do a self-introduction?
Koumi: I’m Koumi and I’m in charge of choreography. Nice to meet you.
Mimori: I’m Mimori and I’m in charge of music composition. Nice to meet you.
Ruuna: I’m the leader, Ruuna. Nice to meet you.
Can you describe callme’s music?
Mimori: Our music is pop music with a sense of R&B and disco but it has a 60s/70s feel to it so it has sounds from the past in it. We want listeners to feel nostalgic but feel as if they are listening to something new at the same time.
What was the inspiration in forming callme? And which musicians did you idolise growing up?
Koumi: For me, in the lead up to the formation of callme, I was influenced by artists like Justin Timberlake, Bruno Mars and in terms of Australian artists, Iggy Azalea.
All three of you self-produced the music and performance of callme. What part of the production do you specialise in?
Koumi: I’m in charge of callme’s choreography.
Mimori: I am in charge of composition and organising the division of the lyric writing between all three of us.
Ruuna: I write lyrics but as the leader I’m also in charge of organising everybody.
Tell me about your debut single ‘To Shine’.
Mimori: Our debut single ‘To Shine’ was released just when we were graduating from high school so it depicts the kind of nervous, thrilled feeling you get when you become an adult and the promising feeling of a fresh, new future.
Did you have any input into the music video for ‘To Shine’?
Ruuna: The poses that appear in the music video were all thought up by Koumi.
Koumi: Yes that’s right. I like dance so during the dance I would keep looking at the poses and how everybody was posing and think “Is this good or not?”
Can you give us hints of next single or album?
Mimori: That’s still in production but it’s a bit soul and R&B and we’re having fun advancing in new genres so we’re enjoying the process. We’ll be working hard on it!
Where will you be promoting To Shine?
Ruuna: Tokyo and our hometown Sendai. We haven’t done any lives but we’ll be working on the production in autumn and then releasing it so we hope that we can promote a bit more in the Kansai region and maybe even Kyushu. We even want to cross the ocean to go to Australia, so please wait everybody!
Have you visited Australia before? If not, what would you like to do and see in Australia?
Ruuna: I’ve been to Australia before. I went to Australia once on a family holiday and I hugged a koala. So next time, during a callme performance, I want to be able to hold a koala while singing at the same time. So we want to try out best (to go there).
Do you have a message for fans of callme?
Ruuna: callme haven’t been to Australia yet but we want to steadily make English songs so that our music can be enjoyed in Australia too and so that people can see our live performances but we’re a bit far away from each other at the moment so please keep callme in mind in the meantime!
To see the rest, please check out our music video!