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J-Pop facts for kids

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J-pop an abbreviation for Japanese pop, natively also known simply as pops, is a musical genre that entered the musical mainstream of Japan in the 1990s.

Modern J-pop has its roots in traditional Japanese music, but significantly in 1960s pop and rock music, such as The Beatles and The Beach Boys, which led to Japanese rock bands such as Happy End fusing rock with Japanese music in the early 1970s.

J-pop was further defined by new wave groups in the late 1970s, particularly electronic synth-pop band Yellow Magic Orchestra and pop rock band Southern All Stars.

At first, the term J-pop was used only for Western-style musicians in Japan, just after Japanese radio station J-Wave was established. On the other hand, it is said that J-pop was originally derived from the Eurobeat genre. However, the term became a blanket term, covering other music genres—such as the majority of Japanese rock music of the 1990s.

Eventually, J-pop replaced kayōkyoku ("Lyric Singing Music", a term for Japanese pop music from the 1920s to the 1980s) in the Japanese music scene. The term was coined by the Japanese media to distinguish Japanese music from foreign music, and now refers to most Japanese popular music.


Yumi Matsutoya, also known as Yuming, Yumi Arai or Karuho Kureta, is considered by many the "mother" of modern-day J-Pop. She has been one of the most successful Japanese singer-songwriters in the twentieth century in the world of pop music. Almost half of her albums reached number one at the Japanese Oricon charts, and all of her albums reached top 10 since her first album, Hikōki-gumo in 1973. She has sold over 37,800,000 copies of albums and singles.

Some Japanese pop artists are extremely popular in Japan, and some also have fanbases in other countries—especially in Asia, but also in Western countries. They influence not only music, but also fashion. As of 2016, the top five best-selling artists in the Japanese Oricon charts history are B'z, Mr. Children, Ayumi Hamasaki, Southern All Stars, and Dreams Come True. Among the five, Hamasaki holds the record for being the only solo artist.

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See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: J-pop para niños

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