• Group Legends: Part One
1. There’s a fourth member!
In the beginning, Perfume comprised three people: Kashiyuka, A-chan, and Kawashima Yuuka, who is no longer a member. However, Kawashima left the group not long after it formed. She went on to be in a different group, called “Risky”.
2. There’s a missing song!
In August of 2005, Perfume held an event where they performed “Juicy Fragrance”, a never-released song. The reason is that producer Nakata Yasutaka lost the data for this song, and the only remaining recording was on MD.
3. In the beginning, they were hiragana: ぱふゅーむ !
In the very beginning, the group’s name was written in hiragana: ぱふゅーむ, or ぱふゅ→む. The current name written in English has been used since the group moved to Tokyo and entered their current production group. The old Perfume was much more idol-like.
4. Their goal: SPEED!
All three members of the group looked up to the four members of SPEED. Nocchi, a huge fan of hiro, entered the Hiroshima Actors School for that reason. A-chan is said to own not only all their CDs, but DVDs and photobooks as well.
5. The reason for their name comes from the members’ names…
All three of the original members of Perfume had the character 香, which means “scent” or “fragrance”; this is where the group’s name came from. However, when Yuuka left and Nocchi entered, she didn’t have that character in her name. Later on, A-chan said the origin was “made after the name!”
6. The reason for the popular commercial: Kimura Kaela!
Kimura Kaela is a well known fan of Perfume. It was Kimura, playing Polyrhythm over and over on her own radio show that made it stick in the CM producer’s mind, and led NHK’s Public Service Department to use Perfume in their commercial. This is what led to their current popularity.
Translator’s (Philosoranter) Note: The article makes a mistake here: Polyrhythm was written specifically for the commercial; it was probably Chocolate Disco that the CM creator heard on the radio.
7. All three are Comedy Maniacs!
They admitted it in their regular column in TVBros.! In the May 24th issue, they said, “Our current favorite group is Double Touch.” They often get excited talking about their favorite comedians, which goes to show how much they’re in to comedy.
8. The fanclub’s name is P.T.A.!
Seven years after they formed, they announced the formation of an official fan club, P.T.A., during a concert. The letters stand for “Perfume To Anata”, Perfume And You. The members themselves are part of the fanclub; A-chan is #1, Nocchi #2, Kashiyuka #3.
Philo Note: In a recent radio show, they called for listeners to make a new backronym for P.T.A.; one example they gave was “(Ice Cream Snack) Pino To A-chan”
Member Legends: A-chan
9. Younger Sister is an Idol, too!
A-chan’s younger sister, Nishiwaki Sayaka, is a member of idol group 9nine. In an interview in Quick Japan vol. 74, Sayaka revealed that all three sisters in her family dreamed of appearing on the Kouhaku Utagassen.
10. Simultaneously confessed to by seven people!
One day in her first year of middle school, A-chan was called out to the school’s incinerator building, where seven boys all said they liked her! However, A-chan was so scared, she said “I’m sorry!” and dashed away. “Maybe I should have said OK to a few of them,” she remarked later.
Philo Note: A-chan had never confessed affection to anyone… until 6/1 in Yokohama. Her first ‘love’? Nocchi!
11. Bears appear near her family home!?!
Among the three members, A-chan’s family lives in the most mountainous area. It’s so in the wilderness that occasionally the news report will warn of bear appearances. On these days, A-chan would carry a bell on the way to school to keep the bears away.
12. First love came to a campaign event!
A-chan’s first crush came to a campaign handshake event in the group’s hometown Hiroshima, lining up with all the other fans. Later, when A-chan realized he came, she panicked, saying “What’s going on, why did you come!?!” in Hiroshima dialect.
13. Eighty sets of pajamas!
Texture, fit, cuteness – A-chan pays attention to every detail of the pajamas in her collection. She has bought 80 sets of pajamas! But where does she put them all?!?
14. Three member group was A-chan’s Mama’s idea!
After Kawashima Yuuka left the group, it was just A-chan and Kashiyuka. A-chan’s mother said, “Isn’t there someone else? A two person unit kind of lacks power.” With that encouragement, A-chan went looking for another member, resulting in Nocchi joining the group.
Philo Note: A-chan discussed Yuuka’s departure with her mother, but didn’t say anything to Kashiyuka until after Nocchi agreed to join. When Kashiyuka first met Nocchi, she was already Perfume!
Member Legends: Nocchi
15. Secret Technique: Split!
There are all sorts of ways to introduce oneself, but the way Nocchi introduced herself to Amuse, her new production agency after moving to Tokyo was to do a full split, going right down to the ground.
16. Confessed affection to ten boys in a row!
The surprisingly mature Nocchi. In second grade in elementary school, she called ten boys one after another out to confess her affection to them.
17. No good with figures? Buys the same manga issue over and over!
Nocchi often buys manga, but she can’t remember numbers very well. Unsure of which volumes she’s already bought, she often buys volumes she already owns accidentally.
18. Image Girl for a foreign company!
In 2002, before coming to Tokyo back when Perfume was still an indies group, Nocchi also did some modeling. She was used in advertisements for a teen beauty product marketed by Johnson & Johnson.
19. Outstanding vocalist at Hiroshima Actors School!
Hiroshima Actors School split their students up based on potential. While A-chan and Kashiyuka were in the beginners’ class, Nocchi was already in the advanced class, one of the top vocalists at the school!
20. Can say all the essential amino acids!
Nocchi has revealed on television and magazine interviews that, “Since I don’t have any real special skills, I answer that I can say all the essential amino acids.” Exactly why she can say them is still a mystery…
Philo Note: She also memorized all the units for numbers used in Japanese, for the same reason – something to call a talent!
Member Legends: Kashiyuka
21. Nominated for the 2002 School Uniform Collection!
In 2002, Kashiyuka appeared in the 41st issue of Young Jump magazine in their School Uniform Collection. Not just in uniform, she also appeared in a swimsuit! Perhaps Kashiyuka is the most idol-ish of the three?
Philo Note: One of the other magazines I bought has the pictures of 14-year-old Kashiyuka in a bikini. It’s white with red mini-cars on it. Sorry, I don’t have a scanner!
22. Revealed herself that she was bullied!
In the Fan Service ~bitter~ photo and DVD collection released last year , Kashiyuka revealed that she was bullied at school by a group of three ‘delinquent’ students. The reason may have been that she had become an idol so young.
23. Favorite vegetables are cabbage and potato!
Kashiyuka hates veggies so much, she’ll pick them out of rolled sushi and eat just rice and fish. Kashiyuka will eat cabbage and potatoes, though. What does she love? Carbohydrates!
24. Eats five servings of ice cream a day!
Kashiyuka prefers ice over rice! She’s got such a sweet tooth, she might eat five servings a day. She is testing how best to eat popsicles without them melting and dripping.
25. Ideal man: Whisper of the Heart’s Amasawa Seiji!
“Pale, tall, and slightly sickly,” describes Kashiyuka’s ideal male. Whisper of the Heart’s Amasawa Seiji is who Kashiyuka describes as “Perfect!!” in the January 2008 issue of Da Vinci.
26. Never confessed her love!
In the 5/23 episode of Perfume’s show HAPPY, Kashiyuka said, “I’ve never told a boy I liked him!” The reason why not? “I’m afraid I’ll be turned down.”
• Group Legends: Part Two
27. Five Pre-Break Extreme Tours!
– 1. Serving the audience ramen!
In 2005, Perfume appeared at a DJ Event in Hokkaido. Since the members were too young to perform late at night, they performed early the next morning! They served a ‘breakfast’ of handmade Sapporo Ramen, which was very well received.
– 2. Concert at a bowling alley!
Before their big break, Perfume performed at a bowling alley. Not on the lanes – they sang in the small space between the parking lot and the entrance…
– 3. Performed at a tuna butchering event!
In 2003 before they came to Tokyo, Perfume performed at a Tuna Butchering Event for a Hiroshima local TV show.
– 4. An overnight tour, with Perfume serving drinks!
In 2006, Perfume held an overnight event, “Spring Field Trip to Lake Hamana”, where the members served drinks, even though they were too young to have any!
– 5. Live performance at a fan’s home!
As a release event for their first single this year, the group performed at the home of a fan chosen in a lottery. They went to the winner’s house and performed live in her living room! They even gave her a choreography lesson!
28. Their first producer was Pappala Kawai!
Perfume’s indies debut came in 2002 with the song Omajinai ☆ Perori, produced by Bakufuu Slump’s Pappala Kawai. Before their current techno-pop sound, they were 100% idols!
29. Akihabara Live stopped by the police!
In April 2005 Perfume held a street live, but in the middle of the second song the police came and halted the event!
30. 3 of 5 guests at their first event…
…were “fakes”! After making their local indies debut in Hiroshima, Perfume held a handshake event, attracting a total of five fans. However, three of five were actually employees of the record store where they held the event! They found out about this after making their national debut.
31. How much did they pay for transportation?
The members kept track of their transportation costs themselves before they made their big break, writing down the figures in a notebook. However, it took forever to fill up a full page, with very little work and lots of “days off”. Their average monthly transport expenses? 2000 yen (about $20)!
32. Nervousness at their first sleep over!
After Nocchi entered Perfume, they held a sleep-over to get closer as friends. However, when A-chan went to take a bath, she left Kashiyuka and Nocchi alone for about half an hour. The two had only recently met for the first time, and spent 30 minutes in near total silence!
33. Former members of an idol group!
When Perfume joined their current production group Amuse in 2003, they were also made a part of Amuse’s idol troupe BEE-HIVE. All the members lived in a dormitory, where there was a web camera set up to webcast video live from the dorm.
Philo Note: You can see a lot of these clips uploaded on Youtube, entitled BEE-HIVE.