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9nine's Kanae Yoshii × HARUNA (SCANDAL) - How to train as a vocalist
Talk With 〇〇〇 for QuattroFormaggi - HARUNA × Kanae Yoshii (9nine) U5BJ5mw

9nine, the performance all-girl unit currently consisting of four members, will close out 2017 with their <Quattro Formaggi> solo live on 12/26 at Zepp Tokyo. As the title of the live is likened to the name of a pizza that uses four kinds of cheese, the live content is also being built so as to exquisitely blend together the individualities of each of the four members.

In this feature, each of the 9nine members invited specialists to a talk session prior to <Quattro Formaggi>. Kanae "Kan-chan" Yoshii's guest is HARUNA, vocalist・guitarist of the all-girl band SCANDAL. We hope that you enjoy the sudden request that jumped forth from Kan-chan, as well as the thoughts of the pair whose vocals are indispensable to live shows.

■We constantly have live shows. Not only tours, but also festivals in between. So, it's like these daily lives are training for us. (HARUNA)

──How do you two know each other?

Kanae Yoshii: I met TOMO-chan at a clothing exhibition quite a while ago, and I think HARUNA-chan came with her to the following exhibition?

HARUNA: That's right! We were on a 「Nice to meet you」 level at that time. After a while, I think 9nine also started going to the voice trainer I've been going to for 7-8 years? I listened to conversations about how 「The 9nine girls are like this」 from our trainer, and when I said, 「I want to talk to them next time」, we met up together along with our trainer.

Yoshii: I saw SCANDAL live in Osaka some time ago. I also went to their shows at Yokohama Arena three years ago; I got to take a picture with them (laughs).

HARUNA: That's right. I remember that.

Yoshii: Originally, before our major label debut and when I was attending high school in Osaka, I had joined a light music club and we sang a cover of SCANDAL's 「DOLL」 at our cultural festival.

HARUNA: Your past was like that? I had no idea.

Yoshii: I was a normal fan (laughs). Before I met you I thought that you looked standoffish, but when I talk to you you're very kind, you're like an older sister to me, and you're always dependable. You actively listen to me, and when I say, 「I want to go eat」, you say, 「Okay, let's go」.

Talk With 〇〇〇 for QuattroFormaggi - HARUNA × Kanae Yoshii (9nine) KsR2jMW

HARUNA: It's so much fun whenever I see you since you talk with me about all kinds of things enthusiastically.

Yoshii: I can talk to you about anything. But what I thought when I saw that previous live is that you're so handsome when you're on stage (laughs)!

HARUNA: Hahaha (laughs)

Yoshii: You were like a handsome guy and truly cool.

HARUNA: Thanks. We've also appeared together with 9nine on TV tapings, and I also watch their music videos. I too originally attended a dance school and aimed to be an artist like 9nine who danced and sang, so I paid attention to them. When you see Kan-chan performing, it's conveyed that she really likes to sing.

──What kind of impression do you have about Yoshii-san's singing?

HARUNA: I think she's a vocalist that has cuteness and coolness. There isn't anyone else who can express being both an idol and an musical artist, so I think that's a really great aspect.

Yoshii: I'm aware of my breadth is constantly extending without breaking boundaries, so having you say that makes me happy. We need to express ourselves with just our bodies since we don't play instruments, so, in regards to songs, we all discuss them together and think about how we can add something extra, like, 「Let's kill this」 or 「Let's do this cutely」.

HARUNA: Also, she's a really good dancer. I often watch the dance videos Kan-chan posts on her Instagram, which are really cool. I wanted to do something like that since I was little, so I'm also envious (laughs). As I haven't yet seen them live, I want to go see them soon.

Yoshii: Definitely! HARUNA-chan, what do you do before a live? We sing and dance two hours before our lives, so if we don't train our bodies starting a month beforehand, they feel heavy and are hard to move.

HARUNA: We constantly have lives. Not only tours, but also festivals in between. So, it's like these daily lives are training for us. We never do things like, 「Let's train our bodies for this live」. Rather, we don't worry about it and keep up our motivation.

Yoshii: I overeat, so...... If I don't build up my physique by the time we have a costume fitting, I get tired since I'm constantly moving on stage (laughs).

HARUNA: But, if you dance regularly, you don't mind your body weight that much, do you?

Yoshii: Well, I eat quite a bit. 9nine's meals are pretty gnarly (laughs).

HARUNA: Your manager is silently nodding (laughs).

Yoshii: I eat two bento boxes in one go. I might eat about 1-3 people's servings of yakiniku (laughs).

HARUNA: How scary (laughs). It is better to eat, though.

Yoshii: Right. We go out for dessert after that (laughs). That's exactly why I need to moderate myself starting a month before a live. But, I eat meat because it's protein.

HARUNA: It's because muscles are necessary.

Yoshii: I avoid sweets as much as possible. We move around during rehearsals, so I can't think clearly if I don't have sugar, which is why I eat fruit. It might just be how I feel, but it's kind of like, 「I love myself when I'm doing my best to prepare for a live」 (laughs).

Talk With 〇〇〇 for QuattroFormaggi - HARUNA × Kanae Yoshii (9nine) Bw1zowB

HARUNA: That's very stoic.

Yoshii: Totally! I am stoic (laughs).

HARUNA: Are you the type of person who, if you don't show that side to people, you can't do it?

Yoshii: That might be true. But, it's cooler to not show it (laughs).

HARUNA: I think it depends on the person, but you're the type to show yourself to people and put pressure on yourself.

Yoshii: I'm self-sufficient, like, 「I'm doing it!」 (laughs).

HARUNA: I'm the type who doesn't really show that.

Yoshii: I think that's cooler. Oh yeah, this has been on my mind. Earlier, you ran 42.195 km in the Osaka Marathon, right? I thought, 「No way!」 (laughs).

HARUNA: I did run it (laughs).

Yoshii: Have you done a marathon before?

HARUNA: Yes. But, I've been running since this year. I'd run about 5 km each week. I didn't say anything about it to anyone (laughs), but I've fallen in love with running. Around springtime when I received an invitation 「Would you like to run in the Osaka Marathon?」 from an Osaka radio station, I thought, 「Let's do this at least once in my life」 and challenged myself.

Yoshii: That's awesome! Actually, I too have been running a little at a time recently, but even thinking about suddenly running that distance is impossible for me!

HARUNA: If I run 5 km to 10 km normally at a pace of 1 km in 6 1/2 to 7 minutes, I know that I won't be out of breath. When I thought I'd run the Osaka Marathon at that pace, my breathing wasn't that cut off. However, if I'd run the entire way, my knees would begin to hurt. Although my upper body wouldn't hurt, it'd get tougher and tougher on my lower body. I learned that was one of the severe things about a marathon.

Yoshii: I too would like to try running a marathon one day!

HARUNA: You feel a sense of accomplishment, and it gives you confidence, like, 「I was able to accomplish this, so I might be able to do anything」.

──Has that added to who you are as a vocalist?

HARUNA: In terms of how I feel, I of course think that running normally is important as a vocalist. My lung capacity has increased since I started running, and the sense of security I feel at lives is completely different. I can take things further.

■Recently, I finally found spare time to think about other things while singing, and that the body seems to be like a single instrument. (Kanae Yoshii)

──What do you do the day before a live, or right before it?

Yoshii: I go to sleep early since my voice greatly changes depending on how much sleep I get.

HARUNA: Is it better the more you sleep?

Yoshii: That's right. I sleep before it turns midnight.

HARUNA: How early (laughs).

Yoshii: I can play a live in great condition if I get more than 8 hours of sleep. Since my throat's not that strong to begin with, it'll hurt right away if I overdo it. I might moisturize and use masks from three days prior.

HARUNA: That's admirable.

Yoshii: I'll be singing during rehearsals for about a week and will be afraid that my voice won't come out when I wake up in the morning. That's because, when we've played two performances on Saturday and Sunday on tour, my throat was already dried out by the last performance. To prevent that, I think, 「I'll sleep and moisturize!」.

HARUNA: I take it easy before a live. There were times when I wouldn't drink alcohol nor talk too much the day before, but when I'm truly not doing well, it was pointless even if I did things like that. Surprisingly, it's easiest for me to spend my day normally. If I'm too worked up my condition gets worse. I overtake myself and do what I do as always. It's been 1-2 years since I've come to do that.

Yoshii: I don't eat right before a live. Your core will be focusing on digesting if you overeat......have you been told that?

HARUNA: I've been told 「It isn't good to overeat」. That might be why I don't eat that much. But, it's okay to eat ramen. The fat is good for your throat.

Yoshii: Ahー!

HARUNA: .......that being said, you shouldn't eat it every time. When I think about lives, I often don't get hungry. However, since I'll feel weak if I don't eat, I do put a little bit into my stomach.

Yoshii: When I enter the venue I immediately make sure to eat and digest.

──What does voice training mean to artists who already have a career in music?

HARUNA: The voice training that we go to, we don't really do vocal exercises that you could imagine. Either way, it's close to muscle training, isn't it?

Yoshii: That's right.

HARUNA: You vocalize while moving your muscles. You exhale and train your lung capacity. Those are the kind of things we do. You care for not only your throat but your body as well.

Yoshii: Each time I go to reset my body. It's like I'm doing maintenance. It may be hard to convey if I say that the throat actually isn't really used......but if you train your body, it'll naturally come forth from your body even if you don't plan to consciously vocalize.

HARUNA: It comes out really easily. I learned that 「Your voice doesn't come from your throat」. I met and started going to my voice trainer when I was really troubled about my singing. About three years after our major label debut, my vocalization was not very good and I couldn't sing in a way that I was satisfied with. After I started going to that trainer and began vocalizing while muscle training, I was again able to find a way of singing that was like myself.

Yoshii: Similarly, I started going to my current trainer when I wasn't sure of my singing. I learned that my voice will come out easier depending on how I train my body rather than my singing skill. Recently, I finally found spare time to think about other things while singing, and that the body seems to be like a single instrument.

HARUNA: What I've been recently working on is that I would like to be a vocalist who seems like they have multiple people within themselves. I want to be able to singing different types of songs. Rather than a genre, I'm aiming to be able to play with my voice and properly be able to do a cool part, a cute part, etc. in one song.

Yoshii: I have a high voice that has a piercing feeling to it. So, I hope I can make it more profound. My voice changes a bit with each year that passes, and my width should also be spreading as well, so I hope I can discover different aspects of myself. To achieve that, I want to discover my growth each time I play a live rather than do special practice. I want to feel that the number of different weapons within me are increasing. For this first solo live for 9nine in a while too, I think it'll answer how I've grown during these past few months.

HARUNA: Some people's voices get lower as they age, but mine gets higher every year. I think it's also due to the results of voice training, and that the width of my voice is broadening.

Yoshii: I like HARUNA-chan's voice. It isn't buried among the instruments, it leads the band and pulls it along, and you can her voice slipping through. It's thick, direct, and cool. Since it's a habit of mine, or rather, I'm not good with projecting my voice so I look up to her.

HARUNA: That makes me happy.

Yoshii: I've been listening to Western music a lot recently. I've been imagining how it might be if we did a genre that's separate from hip-hop or idol.

HARUNA: I think 9nine can absolutely do a Western-style song. 「Why don't you RELAX? 」 is also an interesting song. I think something like Rihanna would suit you.

Yoshii: I too like her.

HARUNA: You don't really have a rock image, so it might be interesting to do that once.

Yoshii: I'm quite interested in that! I'd include fashion too.

HARUNA: It's the same for fashion, and I also imagine R&B suiting you. If you try playing music on the rock side with a band sound, maybe you'll be able to see a completely different side of yourself?

Yoshii: I'd like to try it. Also, I want to dance together with you one day (laughs).

HARUNA: Ehーーー!! With me (laughs)!? I don't dance at all now, though. The most I do is dance during one song as a side act during SCANDAL's annual solo Christmas lives.

Talk With 〇〇〇 for QuattroFormaggi - HARUNA × Kanae Yoshii (9nine) 4EicRJ6

Yoshii: But, the desire to do something related to music with HARUNA-chan, who I met through music and whom I respect, has been hammered into me (laughs). Since we both have dance school backgrounds, I want to try dancing and singing to something like Namie Amuro-san.

HARUNA: I've always respected Amuro-san, but I never imagined that something like this would come along. But, if Kan-chan says so (laughs).

Yoshii: Yayー!

──In any case, are you both glad to be living as vocalists?

HARUNA: That's what I think. Since being a vocalist is the only thing I've imagined since I was little, I'm very happy to be able to keep doing this even after becoming an adult.

Yoshii: I too feel the same. I've only imagined myself singing and dancing since I was a child, being able to do that now and being able to be connected to music like this makes me happy. I want to expand even further.

──For the time being, 9nine has a solo live on 12/26 at Zepp Tokyo.

Yoshii: For this live we aren't adding music more than sound arrangements or lighting. We want to make it live that focuses on displaying our singing and dancing. HARUNA-san, if you have time, please come out!

HARUNA: I want to go. Zepp is a favorite live house of mine and because it's a place where you can play a really cool live even without an elaborate production, so I want to go watch it.

   ◆   ◆   ◆

How would you compare Kanae Yoshii to an ingredient on pizza?
She would be a tomato. Tomatoes are red and have a sense of presence, and a dish looks gorgeous just by adding tomatoes to it. Also, not only are they gorgeous, but they also have good umami flavor. They are similar to Kan-chan who possesses both beauty and ability. (HARUNA)

Talk With 〇〇〇 for QuattroFormaggi - HARUNA × Kanae Yoshii (9nine) UTjAom8
Talk With 〇〇〇 for QuattroFormaggi - HARUNA × Kanae Yoshii (9nine) STt5UkI

Talk With 〇〇〇 for QuattroFormaggi - HARUNA × Kanae Yoshii (9nine) 39iLxaW

2011.7.3 AM2 2012.3.28 SCANDAL vs BUDOKAN 11.3+4 QAT Tour @名古屋 11.10 Happy MUSIC Live 2012 2013.3.3 SCANDAL OSAKA-JO HALL 2013 2014.6.1 HNL Ekiden & Music 2014 6.2 Fan Meeting 2015.4.25 HELLO WORLD @ Paris 4.26 London 4.30 Essen 5.15 Chicago 5.20 MEX 5.22 LA 5.23 Anaheim 2016.1.12+13 PERFECT WORLD 5.21 Welcome Fan Meeting 5.22 HNL Ekiden & Music 2016 5.23 Farewell Fan Meeting 8.21 SCAFes 2017.7.14 47 Prefecture Tour @茨城 7.15 水戸 7.17 東京 2018.9.5 Special Thanks @NY 9.7 SF 9.9 Anaheim 9.12 MTY 9.14 MEX 9.16 TX 2021 KFTD @Paris - London - Berlin 11.11 Toronto 11.13 NY 11.17 Anaheim 11.19 Dallas 11.21 Atlanta
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Shiroten Performer
Shiroten Performer
Many thanks for the translation!

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Indie Artist
Indie Artist
thanks for the translation! It was such an interesting reading.

I really admire the dedication Haruna put in both her body and vocal training. She really went through a hard time with her voice. It's true her voice pitch is getting higher and higher tho, but it's been like this since queens are trumps.
I do also hope that Kanae Yoshii will truly get her to dance to some Amuro's hit songs ahah. It'd be so much fun to see

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Metal Mickey

Metal Mickey

International Performer
International Performer
I hope Namie Amuro hear this and invite some female artists who look up to her to perform together iduring her final tour. Well I know that is close to impossible.

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