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SCANDAL is a Japanese pop-rock girl band from Osaka, Japan. The band was formed in 2006 by four high-school girls. The girls, HARUNA, MAMI, TOMOMI, and RINA, coming from different prefectures in Japan met in an Osaka vocal and dance school called CALESS. The formation of the band was given the initial name “girlsband” as seen in their first ever blog in livedoor which is still accessible until now. They would eventually do studio rehearsals; most notable of the studio venues is STUDIO BROTHERZ. The studio is located on a sixth floor of a building where it shares the floor with other types of businesses, namely adult shops. The girls then decided to choose the biggest signboard among the shops, “SCANDAL”, as their final band name. Eventually, they started performing street lives every weekend at Shiroten in Osaka Castle Park. In these early days, the band played wearing casual clothes and no school uniforms yet. They have also introduced a doll that would serve as their mascot; the doll was named Can-Ta, a genderless alien as stated by its creator MAMI. The doll can always be seen sitting in RINA’s drum set as they do live performances. Continuous street performance gave their popularity more boost as they was eventually given offers from clubs and music halls around Osaka and Kyoto.
In August 2007, they participated in a special event at Shibuya Club Asia, a highly recognized and respected club in Shibuya. It was during this time that the record label Kitty Records first asked the band if they would like to have their music recorded with them. Months later, the girls started releasing their independent singles where the sales were exclusive only to Tower Records. During this period as well is where the girls started to use the concept of wearing school uniforms for their live performances. The first indie single was “Space Ranger” released on March 3, 2008 in celebration of Hinamatsuri (Girl’s day). The single ranked number 2 on Tower Records’ indie charts. Since there was a high demand but limited stock for the single, it was released on both the US and Japanese iTunes Music Store on April 9, 2008. Following Space Ranger was two more singles, “Koi Moyou” released on April 4, 2008 and “Kagerou” released on May 5, 2008. Both singles reaching the top spot of Tower Records’ weekly indie chart. They also started to reach out more to the fans through the internet by creating their official MySpace account and blog.
In March of 2008, they experienced their first ever international live. They participated on the “Japan Nite US Tour 2008” where six major cities in the US were toured. They also performed at “Sakura-Con”, one of the largest anime conventions in the United States. After that they went back to Japan and in May 2008 they were one of the artists that were chosen to sing for the original soundtrack of the video game “Star Ocean 2: Second Evolution”. The song they contributed in the soundtrack was “START”. In July, they went outside of Japan again and this time in Europe to participate in France’s “Japan Expo 2008”. In August, they went back to Asia to participate in Hong Kong’s “Animation-Comic-Game 2008” or “Ani-Com” for short. Most videos of their performances in these events shows them performing their singles as well as original unreleased songs like “Ashita no Ashita”, “SAKURA”, “PLAYBOY”, and “SCANDAL no Theme” which is an introductory song in pure English.
In August of 2008, they decided to conclude their indie days by releasing the mini-album “YAH! YAH! YAH! HELLO SCANDAL” and shortly after signing with the major record label EPIC Records Japan, a record label owned by Sony Music Entertainment Japan. This made them transfer from MySpace to their own website hosted by Sony Music, as well as a new blog and staff blog. They also started to promote themselves in the form of Japanese anime. They made an anime series of themselves with a made-up storyline of their starting days.
Their mainstream career started with the release of their debut single “DOLL” released on October 22, 2008. This gave the band a lot more exposure as they started appearing in mainstream television shows like MUSIC STATION, MUSIC JAPAN, Mujack, MUSIC FIGTHER, and MUSIC FAIR. In March of 2009, the band released their second single entitled “SAKURA Goodbye”, a song that commemorates TOMOMI and MAMI’s high-school graduation. The song SAKURA Goodbye was a revision of their song “SAKURA” that was only heard live. Two weeks after SAKURA Goodbye’s release was the release of “JUDY AND MARY 15th Anniversary Tribute Album”, where they were one of the artists that gave contribution to it by covering the JUDY AND MARY original “DAYDREAM”.
Following that was the announcement that they will be doing a tie-up for the famous anime BLEACH by singing its 10th opening song. The song’s was entitled “Shoujo S” that was first aired in April 14, 2009 on BLEACH’s 215th episode. Two months later, on June 17, 2009, Shoujo S was officially released as their third single. This single raised their popularity tremendously. The single reaching rank #4 on the daily charts and rank #6 on the weekly charts of Oricon(similar to the Billboard charts in the US), compared to the previous two singles that wasn’t even close to the top ten.
August 2009, they went outside of Japan again and returned to Hong Kong to perform for the second consecutive time on Hong Kong’s Ani-Com 2009. Also on August and up to September of 2009, they were chosen to do a theme song for the Pocari Sweat sponsored mini-series “Bukatsu no Tenshi”. The song was entitled “BEAUTeen!!”, it was given its own promotional video where the video uses computer-generated transitions and shows them performing the song in front of a changing blue/white and sky backdrop. And of course shows them drinking Pocari Sweat along the PV.
In October 15, 2009, they released their 4th single entitled “Yumemiru Tsubasa”, a SCANDAL version of the 1988 original song by HILLBILLY BOPS “Yumemiru Koro wo Sugitemo”. It was also used as the October 2009 opening theme for NTV's Ongaku Senshi MUSIC FIGHTER. The two other tracks that were included in this single are BEAUTeen!! and DAYDREAM, where both songs was from previous collaborations.
One week after the release of the 4th single was the release of their first ever studio album entitled “BEST★SCANDAL”. It was released in three versions, CD only, CD+DVD, and CD+Photobook. The CD included 13 songs, 7 tracks coming from the previous singles and 6 new songs. The DVD included the 7 promotional videos, 2 behind the scenes of their international tour, and 2 video making offshoots of Shoujo S and Yumemiru Tsubasa. The photo book, called “SCANDAL BY SCANDAL”, is 284 pages long and features photos taken by the girls themselves. The album ranked #5 on the Oricon weekly chart, making them the first girl band since ZONE to have a debut album chart in the top five. The following day of the release was their first ever “SCANDAL Summit”, an internet show mostly featuring the band answering questions of the fans through letters and actual phone calls.
In December of 2009, they took on their first ever one-man live tour. Touring three prefectures and a tour finale entitled BEST★Xmas which was held in Tokyo during Christmas Eve. Concluding the year, they won a New Artist Award at the 51st Nihon Record Taisho, and were also nominated as the Best New Artist where BIGBANG was the winner.
Late of December 2009, it was announced that SCANDAL will be doing another anime tie-up, this time with the series “FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST: Brotherhood”. They were chosen to sing the 4th ending song for the series. The song was entitled “Shunkan Sentimental” that first aired on the 39th episode of the series on January 10, 2010. On February 03, 2010 the single “Shunkan Sentimental” was officially released as their 5th single. The single included the side track “Yumemiru Koro wo Sugitemo”, where this time it was a cover of the original HILLBILLY BOPS song. On the same day of Shunkan Sentimental’s release, “SCANDAL Summit Vol. 2” was held.
On the 21st of January 2010, they started to reach out more to the fans in the internet by creating their own twitter account, where all 4 of them registered on the same day. Then on the 9th of February 2010 they created a twitter account for their band where it would give news about the band through tweets. With this the band started a twitter poll for the fans to choose a song for the band to cover in their upcoming spring tour. The winner was "secret base ~Kimi ga Kureta Mono~" by ZONE, which was chosen out of over 600 candidates. On spring of 2010, the band officially started their second tour entitled “SCANDAL ~Shunkan Sakura Zensen TOUR~ 2010 SPRING”. The tour lasted from March 23 to April 10.
In June 02, 2010, they released a pop tune for summer as their 6th single, the song was entitled “Taiyou to Kimi ga Egaku STORY”. The promotional video showed a very lively atmosphere and shows them wearing different sets uniforms, unlike the previous ones that only had one set. The song was used as a theme song for different summer events in Japan. While the side track included in the album, "KOSHI-TANTAN", was used as an insert song in the anime film Loups=Garous. A day before the official release of this single, the “SCANDAL Summit Vol. 3” was held.
In June 30, 2010, they released their first ever live DVD entitled “SCANDAL FIRST LIVE -BEST★SCANDAL 2009-“. The DVD features their performance in their first one-man live back in December 2009. It also includes a music video of their cover song “secret base ~Kimi ga Kureta Mono~” that shows footages of their 2010 spring tour.
In July 28, 2010, they released their first ever original ballad as their 7th single, the song was entitled “Namida no Regret”. The included sidetrack "Midnight Television” was used as the theme song for the anime film Loups=Garous.
Between the end of July and the beginning of August, they traveled to Hong Kong once again. There they performed for the third consecutive time on Hong Kong’s Ani-Com 2010. After that they held their first one-man live concert in Hong Kong. They were also featured on the cover of the Hong Kong’s “re:spect music magazine”, and their previously released single "Taiyou to Kimi ga Egaku STORY" reached #1 on the RTHK J-pop chart. Earlier in the year, they were awarded a bronze newcomer award by RTHK, similar to the Hong Kong Grammys.
Also from July up to September, they hosted their first and very own television show entitled “Shiteki Ongaku Jijou”. It ran for 13 episodes from July 2, 2010 until September 24, 2010, and it aired every Friday on TBS from 22:54 to 22:56. Each episode begins with one of the members catching a toy koala. The koala holds a card with a question about song choices directed at an individual member or the band as a whole. After a discussion of the topic, the show ends with a short performance of one of the band's songs.
On the 11th of August 2010, they released their second studio album “TEMPTATION BOX”. The album was released in three versions as well. The CD included 12 tracks, 3 from the previous singles and 9 new songs. The DVD included a digest movie of their spring tour and highlights of their two summits. The photo book is 116 pages long and features photos taken by Ninagawa Mika. The album was able to reach rank#2 on the Oricon daily charts and reached rank#3 on the Oricon weekly charts. The twelfth track of the album “Sayonara My Friend” was used as the ending song for the film Loups=Garous. The album was also released in 42 other countries worldwide. On the 24th of August, they held the “SCANDAL Summit Vol. 4”. Then from September to October, they had another tour for their recently released album; the tour was entitled "SCANDAL TEMPTATION BOX TOUR 2010" ~YEAH! tte Iei!~”.
In October 06, 2010, they released their 8th single entitled “SCANDAL Nanka Buttobase”. The single was released in 4 versions, 3 CD+DVD and 1 CD only. Each DVD contains a song performance from their TV show Shiteki Ongaku Jijou. The song was written and composed by the husband-and-wife duo Aki Yoko and Uzaki Ryudo, who are known for creating many songs for Yamaguchi Momoe. The single reached the rank # 3 of the Oricon weekly charts, making their highest ranking single so far.
On November 14, 2010, they went outside of Japan again this time to Singapore for the first time to participate and perform in Singapore’s “ANIME FESTIVAL ASIA 2010”. Days later, on the 17th of November, they released their first ever cover mini-album entitled “R-GIRL’s ROCK”. The title means "respect girl's rock", and the mini-album features covers of songs by female artists from the 1980s to the 2000s.
The following year it was announced that SCANDAL will be doing another anime tie-up, this time with the series “STAR DRIVER Kagayaki no Takuto”, the song’s title was “Pride”. The song was first aired in the 14th episode of the series on January 09, 2011. On February 9, 2011, the song was officially released as their 9th single. The single also includes the side track "CUTE!” a collaboration with Sanrio's Cinnamoroll. The song also had a promotional video featuring the girls together with Cinamoroll. Also the side track “Emotion”, which is their first song written solely by a band member.
On March 16, 2011, they released their second live DVD entitled “EVERYBODY SAY YEAH! -TEMPTATION BOX TOUR 2010- ZEPP TOKYO”. The DVD shows their performance in the finale of their TEMPTATION BOX tour that was held in Tokyo.
On April 20, 2011, they released their 10th single entitled “Haruka”. The song was used as the theme song for the animated film Toufu Kozou. Similar to “SCANDAL Nanka Buttobase”, this single was able to reach rank #3 on the Oricon weekly chart, making them the two highest ranking SCANDAL single ever. Following Haruka’s release, “SCANDAL Summit Vol. 5” was held.
On May to June 2011, they took on their first tour of the year which is entitled “SCANDAL LIVE TOUR 2011 "Dreamer"”. Then on July 2011, the band returned to the United States once again to perform after 3 years. They participated and performed in the AM2 convention in the US.
The band returned to Japan and released their 11th single entitled “LOVE SURVIVE” on July 27, 2011. Two weeks after, on August 10, 2011, which is also the same date of HARUNA’s birthday, they released their third studio album entitled “BABY ACTION”. The album came in three versions similar to the previous two albums, only this time the photobook version was improved to a magazine version. The CD included 12 tracks, 4 songs from the previous singles and 8 new songs. The DVD included a digest movie of their TEMPTATION BOX tour and a music video of their introductory song “SCANDAL no Theme”. The magazine included interviews and questions answered by the girls themselves.
On September 11 up to 17, the band took on their first ever Asia tour entitled “SCANDAL ASIA TOUR 2011 "BABY ACTION"”. They toured 3 countries, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Singapore. Then on October to December of 2011, they will be doing their second Japan tour of the year. The tour is entitled “SCANDAL VIRGIN HALL TOUR 2011 "BABY ACTION"”.
On September 28, 2011, they released their first ever music video DVD entitled “VIDEO ACTION”. The DVD includes all of their promotional video except for “CUTE!” and 2 bonus videos. The bonus music videos are “KOSHI-TANTAN (Motion Capture Anime ver)” and “Dobondobondo no Theme”. Dobondobondo is the rap duet created by TOMOMI and MAMI that originated from the first “SCANDAL Summit”.
Also it was announced on September that they will be doing another tie-up for BLEACH and will be singing its 15th opening song. This makes them the second artist to do more than one opening for BLEACH, the first one being Aqua Timez. The song was first aired on the 343rd episode of BLEACH on October 11, 2011. The single is said to be released on spring 2012.
On October 20, 2011, they released their first ever artist book entitled “GIRLS BE SCANDALOUS”. The book features 180 pages of interviews and photo session for Single Release. As well as more recent interviews and photo sessions.
They are also set to continue to 2012 by performing their first ever live in Nippon Budokan on March 28, 2012. The live is entitled “SCANDAL JAPAN TITLE MATCH LIVE 2012 "SCANDAL vs BUDOKAN"”. This event makes them the fastest girl group to perform since formed in the said venue.
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