No Retirement! Ichigo Rinahamu Achieves her Goal of Selling 5,000 Copies of her Solo Debut Single!
It came down to the final hours of January 15, 2015 but, former BiS and Aki-Shibu Project member Rina Yokoyama (aka Ichigo Rinahamu) managed to sell 5,000 copies of her self-titled solo debut single “Ichigo Rinahamu”. Having declared to her fans at Akiba Arena on September 15th that she would retire from being an idol if she failed to meet the goal, Ichigo Rinahamu was probably one of the busiest idols in Japan during the past 3 months.
Such challenges are not that unusual in the world of idols. Morning Musume had to sell 50,000 copies of “Ai no Tane” back in 1997 in order to debut. ANGERME (when they were known as S/mileage) had to collect 10,000 smiles in orderto make their debut. Babyraids Japan (when they were simply Babyraids) had to collect 10,000 signatures in order to play their first Budokan solo concert or they would disband.
In addition to performing and making appearances several times a day, Ichigo Rinahamu set up events like Hamu Fes where other would perform with her. Despite being based in Tokyo, she also traveled as far as Osaka, Nagoya, and Fukuoka in her mission to make it on her own as a solo idol. One of the performers that would often appear at Ichigo Rinahamu’s events was Younapi (Yurumerumo!) who she collaborated with for the single “Kiramekiraririkaru” (release date: December 3, 2014). Unsurprisingly, Younapi was there at Akiba Arena on that cold and rainy night as a performer and friend.
The goal seemed pretty daunting for Ichigo Rinahamu but, it seemed as if sales were accelerating as the final day approached. She even managed to break into the top 20 for the weekly indies singles charts! This was probably helped by the fact that her CD was available at Tower Records as opposed to only being on her website and at her events like it was back in October/November.
However, with the numbers from Tower Records not coming until the last minute, Ichigo Rinahamu ended up selling her 5,000th CD around 10:30pm on January 15, 2015, only 90 minutes before the deadline. At that moment, the fans in Akiba Arena shot off party poppers and as promised, Ichigo Rinahamu launched into “nerve”, a song she helped make popular as an original member of BiS.
Congratulations to Ichigo Rinahamu on achieving her goal! Let’s hope she takes a much-needed rest because she deserves it after working almost every day for 3 straight months!
Ichigo Rinahamu Official Website: http://15rinahamu.com/
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