iside89: (Kame Winter)
[personal profile] iside89
This is the 4th Kame Camera special, released in September :D Quite a long issue, but totally a must-read not only for Kame fans, but all KAT-TUN fans! Because his words regarding the group KAT-TUN and its members are really so touching!

Theme is ROOTS. Three journeys for three milestones. So, highlights:
-his hometown, his reputation as the friendly and girl-lover (!) member of the "Four Naughty Kamenashi Brothers" XD
-his 20 years old, the most difficult period of his life, with its painful memories and when being popular scared and suffucated him.
-KAT-TUN and their new story: starting again as four, how their relationship is "more than mere work colleagues", the "sense of responsibility" toward the group and... the smart retort made by the journalist: he talks about KAT-TUN as he'd talk about a wife! XD

This time the pictures Kame took were placed in the last corner!

A huge thanks [ profile] scorch66 for her very fast English check ♥

Kame Camera Special

The places that created me. The places I must be at.


As an individual human being, as a media personality, as KAT-TUN. He visited three precious places that gave birth to and raised Kamenashi Kazuya. Three journeys which trace back to his roots.

special 4

ROOTS 01_1986~
「My boyhood days when I was completely absorbed by baseball」

I received a lot of love from both my family and my neighborhood

The shitamachi downtown of Edogawa-ku is the place that created the foundation of Kamenashi Kazuya, the person, before he joined the entertainment world. When he was still unknown, he was a young boy completely absorbed by baseball.

“I practiced at school, and even after coming back home I was borrowing the walls of the neigborhood houses and hitting the walls with the ball for hours. Everyone forgave me a lot, didn't they? I was also a precocious brat who liked girls. I was walking around my hometown sharing umbrellas with girls since first grade. And kissing behind the leaves (laughs) This park hasn't changed at all either, has it...”

Walking down the streets he has known since his childhood, a lady on a bicycle approaches with a full-face smile calling, “Kazu-kun!”. He answers with a happy expression. “She's the bakery lady who took care of me a lot since I was a kid! She always secretly gave me snacks like bread crusts or cakes.... It's a downtown full of human feelings typical of the shitamachi downtown. I think the reputation of “the naughty 4 Kamenashi Brothers” had gone all around the neigborhood too. In particular, I was particularly friendly so I was popular (laughs)”.

Of course from his family, but he also received a lot of love from the people who live here.

“The time I spend with my family is increasing steadly. I can't enjoy delicious food and travels overseas if I'm alone. Because the feelings of wanting to share what I have earned with my family are growing stronger year after year. And I think I want to pay my hometown back too, one day. I want to support the young baseball teams!”

The old look of his baseball childhood was dwelling on that face lit up with the sun.

special 3

ROOTS 02_2006
「20 years old. The period I seemed to be me but wasn't myself.」

Including all the painful memories, it's connected to the present me.

The 20-year-old Kamenashi Kazuya was in a shipyard in Yokohama for the filming of his first leading actor drama, “Tatta hitotsu no Koi”. Even now, after 8 years, the boat used for the filming is still there. “When I smell the odor of this place, a lot of memories come back to me...”

The debut single broke through the one million sold copies record. It was the period when his name became well known to the public all at once, and every single movement or action would attract attention. “The environment changed suddenly and I was at a loss. I mean, even when just going to a conbini to buy some stuff, a lot of people would call me, and whatever small thing I casually said at a recording place would become news. A sense of dread began to grow, I wasn't going outside anymore, and I was talking only with the concerned parties. I was also shocked by the false image society was giving me. “KAT-TUN's Kamenashi Kazuya” is taciturn, has some kind of shadow, wears a bathrobe... sort of (laughs) Even writers and editors were saying such stuff to me (laughs) I began to think that entertainers couldn’t stay as themselves, that they couldn’t live without creating an official face... How to say it, I was feeling that I wasn't me”.

Despite feeling suffocated and repulsed, he kept racing across the complete loss and darkness he was in. What saved his heart from crumbling many times, were the encounters and the experiences he had during this period.

“I think I was blessed with the encounters I had with the pieces of work, staff, and friends. This drama is the same. In this place I was taught the fun of creating a drama, the depth involved in impersonating a character. I think it connects to who I am now.”

ROOTS 03_2014
「What's always here is the existence called KAT-TUN」

The fact that the member count decreased won't be a power down

August 23rd, Fukuoka Marine Messe. At 16:00 Kamenashi-kun says, one hour before the curtain goes up, “Shall we go to the backstage?” He walks down the line of flow from the fast-costume-changing place to the very stage. The audience is already sitting on the other side of the single thin veil, and the anticipation and enthusiasm directly reaches us. “I think KAT-TUN's roots are lives. We have had quite a lot of independent lives since our Junior period, something that, back then, was unusual... Before appearing on TV, there have been lots of things we've learnt through the lives. Things like the skill of communicating with the audience or experiencing firsthand with our skin. I guess we could be recognized by everyone thanks to the live performances too. Perhaps this old fashion feeling is our special and unique personality.”

Lives are their major battlefield. Exactly for this reason, no matter if it's their first tour after two years and half and the first they hold as four members, this stage is filled with new experiments. The side passageways which are mandatory for Johnny's concerts are, on the contrary, missing; neither are they using the lifts and the trolleys which move around the hall at full potential. They kept in mind whether they can make the whole hall enjoy the concert until the very last corner by focusing on one single point, the main stage, and pulling off an even stronger sense of unity. They also used the weapons only KAT-TUN have, like Nakamaru Yuichi's voice percussion and Taguchi Junnosuke's tap dance. It was a live that, while still showing up [ie. showing off] their talents, overflowed with heartwarming, humanfeelings.

“I can't look objectively at my own group, but I think it's a fun and original group (laughs) We want to hold overseas concerts too one day, so we tried out things that we can't do in a Dome-sized venue. We brought together the members' ideas and strengths, and reduced them even more to what only KAT-TUN and no one else can do. For example, this time we thought that we could create an amusing story if first we used Nakamaru's voice percussion to involve the audience, and then we managed to tie it to a song where we all use the “stomp” (a dance which takes its rhythm from hands and feet beats).”

They don't want to make the size-down in the members' count equal a power-down.

“If the number of people changes, the visual performance changes too, and also what we can do with lives and CDs changes. I think that multiple “ways to enjoy” exist. Now, standing on the stage as four, I feel that Taguchi's personality became easier to see. By entrusting the MC to Nakamaru, a playfulness was born in all members and we managed to gain a good balance. By the way, regarding Ueda, no matter how many members we are, it's always “Ueda’s own world” (laughs). In the end, when we are together as a group, no matter who is in which position, [the group] is realized. Each one shows his own merit and we can meld together into KAT-TUN. I want us to be such a group”.

Maybe it's because I was here that a sense of responsibility arose.

When we visited the four members' dressing room to greet them, Nakamaru-kun immediately stood up and cheerfully spoke first, “Thank you for taking care of our Kame”. Taguchi-kun made us laugh open-heartedly, “Hello! I've eaten lots of your food presents~”. Ueda-kun was silently doing muscular training alone. This was their three-people three-ways reaction. It was just before the show but the mood was similar to an all boys' school and the atmosphere was more relaxed than we could imagine, and we inadvertently calmed down too.

“It feels like being with your own family, doesn't it? (laughs) For good and bad, it can't be an exclusive ‘only for work’ relationship. This is why it feels comfortable, but I guess we also need moments where we communicate with each other coolly as fellow TV talents, or have heated arguments. Not to clash against one another, but to completely open ourselves up and tell each other what we want to do. Through this method and applying ourselves closely, we can grow up as group, and we can break new ground. This might be the 4-member-KAT-TUN's objective (laughs).”

Career and performance, how to exist and think as a group. There are many things that arose and developed inside of him exactly because he was part of KAT-TUN.

“If I had been in another group, I believe I'd have become a completely different person. The activities we are entrusted to and the human relationships inside each group are different. And especially us, we're a group hit by a huge raging wave two times now even. Every time one of these angry waves came, we had to steel ourselves for mapping out our future as a group, and we have made strenuous efforts thinking, “we have to stand firm in one way or another”. So now I became able to skillfully look at KAT-TUN's existence from a highangle. When we were 6 there was a certain amount of ego, but this isn't a place to do what one wants to do as a personal hobby or interest. I'm thinking only about what we can express as a group. For example, opportunities to take part in movies as Kamenashi Kazuya have increased recently. Of course, that is my personal desire. But on the otherhand, I also think I'd be happy if they could entrust that movie's main song to the 4 of us (laughs). In the past there were times I thought that it would be nice to have other artists sing the main song even for a drama I starred in. I guess somewhere in my heart I wanted to separate KAT-TUN’s Kamenashi from my activities as a solo talent. But now that I have overcome many raging waves, I can't say such a thing. Perhaps I became able to give priority to what must be done as KAT-TUN, even if at times it means I have to suppress my desires as an individual person”.

How can he think that far? When we ask that, he promptly answers “sense of responsibility!”. Aren't these exactly like the words of resolution to a wife you've been married to for a long time!?

“Yes (laughs). Because it's a community created by fate. Because whatever the members do, be it good or bad, what is upfront is the group's name. As one member of the KAT-TUN family, I take my responsibilities and I do what I can do. This is for the sake of all the people who love the group more than for our own sake. I think I want to make [the group] evolve more and more and leave something of value”.

He was completely absorbed during the talk after the end of the show too. Kamenashi-kun said “I'm looking forward to tomorrow's show too”.
Once again, a new story begins from here------

(concert pictures' descriptions, first page)

We infiltrated inside KAT-TUN LIVE TOUR 2014 in Fukuoka Marine Messe (8/23). After the rehearsal which was held two hours before the show, they had a short break, and Kamenashi-kun even introduced us to the backstage. On the other side of the curtain, there was already quite a few audience members. They also used a few trolleys. For the fans who can finally meet them, such a short distance is really something to be happy for! The end of the live has the estabilished custom. The whole venue holds hands with the person on their right and left and raises their hands. “We are KAT-TUN!!!”

(concert pictures' description, second page)

From the start to the end, the whole venue is extremely enthusiastic at the gorgeous direction and heart-warming feelings felt through the stageing! This is a valuable picture of their backs from the end of the live.
Sudden picture of KAT-TUN dripping with sweat 2 minutes after the end of the show! Taguchi-kun, with his excellent service spirit, gives us a big smile. Nakamaru-kun gives us a comical fighting pose. Ueda-kun, without letting you feel even a drop of sweat, gives a “my pace” face. Then, Kamenashi-kun, who enjoys the relax after the excitement. These personalities and atmospheres which feel almost too different one from the other are exactly KAT-TUN's unusual charm.


Kame's fixed point of observation SPECIAL – Photo by Kazuya Kamenashi
The real start is 35 minutes before the show begins

Kamenashi-kun concluded the rehearsal in casual clothing: sunglasses, T-shirt, jeans. It's one hour before the start of the show and he hasn't the faintest hint of anxiety. “On the first date of the tour I was nervous, but now I'm already calm! I do nothing but enjoy.” The estabilished custom is: 35 minutes before the show he takes a shower, does the make-up and his switch turns on in one go. Until then, he decides to introduce us to the valuable dressing room, the costumes room, the backstage. The gorgeous costume which includes the neon illumination is heavy enough to make your arm tremble just holding it with your hands. How can they dance that gracefully wearing this?! “Really? I already got used to it so I don't know (laughs)”

1. I always choose my birthday number as my backstage pass. 2. From the stage, just before the live starts. 3. The rug with the four costumes for the opening song “COME HERE”. 4. I tried to take this picture during the live, under the stage, just after I finished changing into my solo song “Emerald” costume. I unexpectedly have quite a lot of composure, don't I?


Kame's selfie before his solo is cute~ xD And the granny calling him "Kazu-kun", aww ♥

Anyway, allow me to comment too this time - as individual, not as translator.
I really like how fondly he talks about his childhood, family and neigborhood. It's heartwarming.
The 2006 part gives me twisted feelings because I can sympathize with that "sense of dread" he talks about.

And the last part... he doesn't lie about difficulties, but the whole passage is actually full of vibrant positive feelings.
No mystery I really respect and share Kame's view on work, but he keeps surprising me. Of course everyone is free to read whatever they want in his words. But the passion, the deep feelings he has toward KAT-TUN, the enthusiasm and devotion which exude from the third part of this interview... they are so strong. And he's absolutely a team player, his "this isn't a place to do what one wants to do as a personal hobby or interest" says more than one thousand words. And as painful as it is, I really respect his attitude "if it's for the group sake, I'll suppress my personal wishes"; very few people can think like this. Plus, how he namedrops the other members was so sweet! :D
And, always personally, this line is so mature, it touched me so much: "Because it's a community created by fate. Because whatever the members do, be it good or bad, what is upfront is the group's name. As one member of the KAT-TUN family, I take my responsibilities and I do what I can do. This is for the sake of all the people who love the group more than for our own sake."
Perfect interview.

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