Johnny’s issues and the hit “War of the Traps” make it a strong possibility! The day Shingo Katori returns to “Kohaku | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Johnny’s issues and the hit “War of the Traps” make it a strong possibility! The day Shingo Katori returns to “Kohaku

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In April, he appeared as the first guest on “Matsumo to Nakai. His exchange with Nakai, which had not taken place in a long time, was well received.

Around this time of year, the selection of contestants for NHK’s “Kohaku Uta Gassen” held every year on New Year’s Eve begins to come up. This year, many first-time and returning contestants are expected to appear.

Johnny’s, which has been rocked by the sex-abuse issue involving its founder, Janie Kitagawa, sent six groups last year, including “KinKi Kids,” celebrating its 25th anniversary, and “Naniwa Danshi,” who will be making their debut, but since the issue will not be resolved by the end of the year, it is believed that the agency will decline to send them.

Instead, it is the new faces and returning singers who are likely to be in the entry slots. There are also several new faces in the K-pop groups,” said a music industry insider.

And a former Johnny’s star has emerged as a first-time solo contestant.

Shingo Katori of ex-SMAP. This year, he made headlines when he sang “BETTING,” the theme song for the January drama “Trap’s War” (Fuji TV) starring Tsuyoshi Kusanagi, another former SMAP member who is working as part of the joint project “New Map,” in collaboration with the popular Korean group SEVENTEEN. For the past few years, Kohaku has been trying to attract younger viewers, and the collaboration between Katori and SEVENTEEN is expected to attract viewers of all ages,” said an NHK official.

NHK was one of the first terrestrial broadcasters to use the three members of New Map, who are independent from Johnny’s, and Katori has appeared on the station’s music program “SONGS. In addition, the station has noticed the popularity of “SEVENTEEN” in Japan.

The mini-album “FML,” released on April 24, has sold more than 6.2 million copies worldwide, making it the best-selling single K-pop album of all time and a hit in Japan as well, and a campaign in collaboration with the major convenience store chain Seven-Eleven will begin on September 7.

Former SMAP chief manager Michi Iijima, who leads “New Map,” is a big fan of Korean culture. He and Katori have collaborated with various artists and provided them with songs in the past, but he has set them up in the right places” (entertainment reporter).

NHK MUSIC EXPO 2023,” a music program featuring artists active on the world stage, will start on the 14th of this month, and “SEVENTEEN” will be joined by “New School Leaders,” “YOASOBI,” and Johnny’s, who made their “US debut” last year. The show will appear with “Travis Japan,” which made its “debut in the U.S.” last year. In this program, they will perform a song that is not a collaboration with Katori. Therefore, it is inevitable that the show will be a topic of conversation if Katori appears in Kohaku.

Katori made a guest appearance on “Matsumo to Nakai Nakai,” a talk variety show hosted by Downtown’s Hitoshi Matsumoto and former SMAP member Masahiro Nakai that started on April 30, and became a topic of conversation when he and Nakai performed together for the first time in six years.

At that time, Katori sang “BETTING” during a stage performance on the program, but the members of SEVENTEEN’s part was only played with sound and seemed interminable. The members and Katori’s schedules do not match, and they have not yet been able to collaborate on a performance. So, if they decide to participate in Kohaku, it will finally be the first time to realize a live collaboration, and it is inevitable that it will attract a lot of attention.

Katori, who made his last appearance as a member of SMAP in 2003 before the group’s dissolution in 2004, is expected to return to Kohaku after an eight-year absence to show what kind of performance he and his new “partners” will give.

Katori returned to terrestrial TV dramas for the first time in five years with “Anonymous” (TV Tokyo), which will start in January 2009.
Although she played a serious role in the drama, she was smiling in a promotional photo shoot (January 2009).
  • PHOTO Yusuke Kondo

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