Ayumi Hamasaki

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Ayumi Hamasaki

Mesaj  CookiZz la data de Dum Sept 09, 2007 5:52 pm

Ayumi Hamasaki ( Hamasaki Ayumi, born October 2, 1978) is an award-winning J-Pop singer. Commonly known simply as "Ayu", Ayumi Hamasaki is one of the most popular and influential Japanese pop singers, and has been dubbed “The Empress of JPop”.She was born and raised in Fukuoka and moved to Tokyo to pursue a career in the entertainment industry. Since her debut in 1998 with her first single poker face, she has sold more than 45 million records in Japan alone, with the releases of her eight full-length studio albums, one mini-album, four compilation albums, 41 singles, and several non-studio albums, being the top selling solo and female artist and the fourth top selling Japanese artist in history.With the release of her 40th single Blue Bird, Hamasaki's single sales have passed the 20 million mark, making her the first solo and female singer to reach that milestone.

With the release of her 39th single Startin' / Born to be... in 2006, Hamasaki became the female solo artist with most #1-hits. To date, Ayumi has 28 #1 singles and 39 singles in the Top 10 of the Japanese Oricon charts. She has 16 consecutive #1 singles to date (starting from Free & Easy). Hamasaki is also the first Japanese artist to have her first original eight studio albums top the charts

Hamasaki has been considered the fashion leader amongst Japanese females ever since reaching superstar status in 2000, especially amongst Japanese high-school girls. Regularly appearing in leading Japanese fashion magazines such as ViVi, Cawaii and Popteen, she became a trend-setter with her unique style. Japanese streets were filled with young females trying to imitate her style with fashion items such as oversized sunglasses and fake fox tails. Her influence in Japanese fashion has seen her win an unprecedented three consecutive Nail Queen awards and five Best Jeanist awards, and was inducted into the respective Halls of Fame for her achievements. Japan's cosmetics giant, Kose, has also used Hamasaki in many endorsements for Visee cosmetics pieces such as mascara and lipstick.

In Oricon's 2006 spring and summer polls, she was named the most fashionable female artist. She has appeared on the cover of Vogue twice, once modeling for an entire spread featuring Bulgari, and the other for popular designers Dolce & Gabbana. Numerous pieces were designed for Hamasaki. She was recently featured in a spread for Dior jewelry and luxury items featuring an Ayumi in a manner of timeless and classic elegance, as compared to her usual "popstar" appearance. Hamasaki is also often seen with designer goods from major fashion houses from all over the world such as Louis Vuitton, Alexander McQueen, Juicy Couture, and Christian Louboutin.

Although Hamasaki lived with her mother, she was primarily raised by her grandmother. She has vague recollections of her father as he supposedly divorced her mother and left the family at around the time she was five, and she has not seen him since. She grew up in a very liberal household where she was expected to do what was right for her without her mother intervening in her affairs, since her mother was always out working to support the family

In her youth, Hamasaki started her modeling career as a model for a local bank.During high school, she was considered a delinquent because she dyed her hair and wore short skirts, both of which were considered extremely unconventional in Japan at that time. She did not enjoy her time at school much and did not get along well with the teachers. She found studying chemistry a very easy thing to do, but eventually dropped it because she found that it didn't seem necessary to make a living.

Screencaps of the 1995 promotional video also known as 'Swimsuit Special', produced to promote Ayumi Hamasaki for her talent agency 'SOS'.Occasionally, Hamasaki would go from home Fukuoka to Tokyo for short periods of time, to do various modeling jobs and during her stays,she would make friends with people she met at work. After graduating from junior high school, she had her mind made up to go to a senior high school in Tokyo. She took entrance exams to Horikishi Gakuen (art/entertainers school) together with her friends, and she was the only one to fail — much to the surprise of herself and the school.

When taking the entrance exams again, Hamasaki ventured from her former talent agency SOS (targeted mostly at young models) to Sun Music, because the chief of SOS felt she would not do well because of her short height and would do much better in other activities, such as appearing on television.

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