The following is my own opinion and does not necessarily reflect those of the other Selective Hearing staff and/or the sites partners or affiliates.

As we all know Tsunku will be away taking care of his health (as he should) and one of the lingering questions coming out of his announcement is, “What will happen to Hello! Project without him?”

This one question points what could be considered one of the major problems with H!P right now. The most relevant person in the entire roster of young female idols is a 45-year-old man. Isn’t there something just a little wrong with that?

Tsunku is going to be out of commission for possibly a considerable amount of time and this opens a small window of opportunity for UP-FRONT to perhaps show that they can stand on their own without their long time songwriter/producer.

Now here’s a crazy idea that I’m sure many H!P fans will vehemently disagree with. How about hiring some outside songwriters and producers to freshen things up a little? Oh I know that is blasphemy and maybe H!P should just cease all activity until Tsunku recovers from cancer treatment. He’s the only one who really knows all the groups and what is best for them right?

Can that really be considered a sure thing? The label “Produced by Tsunku” to me is a half-truth like “Produced by Dr. Dre”, “Produced by will.i.am”, Produced by “Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs”, etc. You know there are other people in the studio with these guys doing most of the heavy lifting until the star producer comes in and puts the finishing touches on a track. (for better or worse)

And really, is the internal brain trust doing themselves any favors by showing any lack of musical variety for any of the groups in the H!P fold? (except for Juice=Juice)

I believe there are some talented people outside of the UP-FRONT fold who can equal or even best what Tsunku has done with H!P’s groups in the current era. Tell me you wouldn’t kill to have Yasutaka Nakata produce an Electro Musume track? He seems to know a bit more about the genre than the paint by numbers productions that have passed for the current Morning Musume songs. The man can certainly compose a great pop song, just ask Perfume or Kyary Pamyu Pamyu.

How about Kenichi Maeyamada (a.k.a. Hyadain), who is most known for his work with Momoiro Clover Z. I could see him working with Berryz Koubou, C-ute or even S/mileage.

Any of these groups could use his magic touch to add a bit of excitement to their current crop of hit and miss songs. S/mileage in particular could use a good swift kick in the pants to get them back their former potential greatness we saw before their second generation auditions accidentally blew things up.

These are obviously just suggestions. Lord knows what UFP is going to do now that their main man is on the shelf for a while. I would hope they’re not desperate enough to drag the man out of his doctor’s appointments or from recovery to work on a song.

Looking ahead, when Tsunku recovers and returns what are the odds his voice is going to be even half of what it was? Sure he could probably still write lyrics but is he even going to be able to communicate what he wants the girls to do vocally if he is physically unable to demonstrate?

I believe this is an interesting time for UP-FRONT and if they even consider what I am suggesting it would be the ultimate early Festivus miracle. I don’t think this has to be a temporary stopgap while Tsunku is away either, but a move for the future as well. The man can’t work forever after all.

Of course I know realistically this entire idea may be a pipe dream and whatever they decide to do will likely be more disappointing and full of fail based on UP-FRONT’s track record. I would like to hold on to that small sliver of hope that UFP thinks outside of the box in this case.

Perhaps cautious optimism is the best way to describe my feeling towards a post-Tsunku world in Hello! Project. We’ll see when the next batch of singles is released I guess.

Comments

  • NyNy March 16, 2014 at 9:46 am

    It’ll be interesting to see if someone steps up and produces their songs.

  • Steve Summers March 17, 2014 at 11:51 am

    I’ve been wondering the same thing myself. Its pretty ridiculous to think that if he’s not involved they couldn’t go on, though it seems that’s how most fans are talking about this. Though, I wouldn’t be terribly opposed to every group under that umbrella calling it quits right now, either, if things were going to continue as they have been, regardless if he’s there or not, I think they just need to do something else. However, the day Japan shuts down a still-lucrative business just may be the same day we see hell freeze over. I think they’re going to try their damnedest to try to get things back to exactly the way they were before he left for illness, if he does come back, though it would rather likely never be the same. It’ll be interesting to see how this is handled, but like you said, given UFA’s track record, I’m not expecting it to end in a very satisfactory manner.

  • Asha April 5, 2014 at 5:10 am

    I like to think Tsunku planned for when he left but he picky so he possibly doesn’t have someone he has complete faith in.

  • mark reitinger October 24, 2014 at 3:37 am

    I’m very with you on this, but mostly because Tsunku’s condition could turn out to be the “worst possible.” God forbid. I’m not very confident about it but I have to admit that H!P COULD continue without him. Afterall, Gene Roddenberry’s gone but “Star Trek” is doing fine. Walt Disney died fifty years ago but the organization he left behind is doing better than ever.