Happy 2020 to everyone!!!
I hope everyone had a great start of the year. It is going to be an exciting year for Tokyo indeed with the much anticipated Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics coming in summer.
I went to watch one of my favourite Johnny’s artists – Yara Tomoyuki for his latest musical “Rockability Jack” last weekend and thought that’s the end of my Johnny’s shows for the year…
However, by the goodwill from a very lucky friend who actually won the tickets, I went to Johnny’s Countdown Concert 2019-2020 last night and countdown to the new year at Tokyo Dome. The last time I went to one was more than 15 years and there weren’t so many groups, so I wasn’t sure if I could keep up with the 2-hour show that starts from 11:00 pm.
Super long queues
They only released uchiwa as the concert good this time, and arranged a pre-sales date on 29th December at Tokyo International Forum. I didn’t purchase any of these, but reading reports of how fans were lining up for 3 hours to get a uchiwa is simply crazy. Even at the Dome sales area, lines were pretty long too.
KinKi Kids were in Osaka Kyosera Dome.
I already knew that KinKi Kids were in Osaka for their own Countdown Concert, so there wasn’t any chance to see them live, or countdown to Koichi’s 41st birthday. But I thought I enjoyed myself thoroughly on 15th December for their own concert, so this time my focus will be on the other groups, especially the ones I haven’t got a chance to see them live yet.
Digital tickets for only FC members
Different from the KinKi Kids concert, for the countdown concert, they only open the ticket sales to fanclub members, meaning you can still ballot for at most 2 tickets but when you apply, you have to enter the FC accounts for yourself and the other person you are going with. Similar to KinKi Kids concert, they were digital tickets this time which you won’t know the seat until your QR code is scanned. I got a stand seat at the 3rd base which was considered pretty good to get an overall view since there were 3 stages – main, centre and back for this concert.
45-minute show time
Before the TV broadcast which started at 11:45 pm, the concert began at 11:00 pm with the below groups performing.
Yume no Hollywood
Talk it! Make it!
Bang Bang!! (with A! group)
Kansai Island (with A! group)
Everything 4 You
Doshaburi Hero… Always 4U.
VI Guys Snow Man
Introduction Rap : We are Snow Man 2019
Party! Party! Party!
All of them are considered the non-debut groups (Snow Man and SixTones will debut on 22nd Jan 2020), and it’s amazing to see how popular all of them are. I’m not that familiar with the younger groups even when I’m trying to watch Shonen Club every week but you can see how fans know all the moves to the juniors’ songs.
The boys are all very conscious of the camera focus and will know how to make all kinds of faces when it’s their turn to capture attention from fans. Personally, I’m super happy to see 4U. and SixTones performing.
Start of the TV broadcast
It was a “painful” reminder for me of how you will be kept very busy with your binoculars trying to catch your favourite boys when they are all around the place. While one group is singing, another group will be on standby at another stage or simply walking past your area waving to fans.
Johnny’s Debut Song Medley
Kis-My-Ft2 – Everybody Go
King & Prince – Cinderella Girl
Hey! Say! JUMP – Ultra Music Power
KinKi Kids – Garasu no Shonen
Sexy Zone – Sexy Zone
A.B.C-Z – Za ABC ~5stars~
Kanjani8 – Naniwa Iroha Bushi
Johnny’s WEST – Ee janai ka
NEWS – NEWS Nippon
ARASHI – A.RA-SHI
KAT-TUN – Real Face #2
Yamashita Tomohisa (with 4U.) – Daite Senorita
V6 – MUSIC FOR THE PEOPLE
Note : I’m still amazed at the fact that the father of Kikuchi Fuma (from Sexy Zone) is the person who wrote the lyrics of A.RA.SHI. We all know Fuma is on good terms with Sakurai Sho in private with their similar education background (both are from Keio University).
COUNTDOWN to 2020!!!
At the same time when we countdown to 2020, it’s also Koichi’s 41st birthday!!! The highlight of the countdown concert for me has always been seeing everyone wishing Koichi “Happy Birthday!” especially when Nagase Tomoya (TOKIO) is there… unfortunately these years, TOKIO can no longer join all these year-end music variety shows.
Johnny’s Group Change Medley
Hey! Say! JUMP – Chankapana (NEWS)
Johnny’s WEST – Sukiyanen, Osaka (Kanjani8)
KinKi Kids – Yozora no Mukou (SMAP)
NEWS – Keep the faith (KAT-TUN)
King & Prince – Thank you jan! (Kis-My-Ft2)
A.B.C-Z – Venus (Takki & Tsubasa)
Sexy Zone – Mayonaka no Shadow Boy (Hey! Say! JUMP)
KAT-TUN & Kokubun Taichi – LOVE YOU ONLY (TOKIO)
Kanjani8 – One Love (ARASHI)
It’s one of my favourite sections as you can see how different a song can sound when sung by a different group. Personally, I was looking forward to hearing KinKi Kids sing “Yozora no Mukou”. If only the cut can be longer but we know it’s impossible with so many groups / songs to squeeze in an hour’s show.
Johnny’s NEXT Stage
Johnny’s Jr. – Can do! Can go!
SixTONES – Imitation Rain
Snow Man – D.D.
We were all expecting to keep their debut songs for the TV broadcast part since SixTones and Snow Man already performed some songs before the TV broadcast. There is an under-18 member named Raul in Snow Man who’s actually only 16 years old (o.m.g.), so their performance is pre-recorded, and they simply showed him from the audience seat. 🙂
Johnny’s Super Hit Song Medley
KinKi Kids – Zenbu Dakishimete
King & Prince – koi-wazurai
KAT-TUN – Ask Yourself
Kis-My-Ft2 – SHE! HER! HER!
Johnny’s WEST – Big Shot!!
Sexy Zone – Kirin no ko
A.B.C-Z – Moonlight walker
NEWS – Koi no ABO
Hey! Say! JUMP – Fanfare
Shuji to Akira – Seishun Amigo
Kanjani8 – Tomo yo
ARASHI – Troublemaker, Believe
I thought I have always known how popular ARASHI is, but you can really feel the heat from the fans when ARASHI finally appeared on stage after rushing from the previous NHK Kohaku show. It’s simply breathtaking to witness all the colourful penlights moving in the same action. We all had a big surprise when Yamapi and Kame announced that they will have some concert tour as Shuji to Akira this year too!
V6 25th Anniversary Medley
V6 – HONEY BEAT, Beautiful World
ALL – WA ni natte odorou
After the TV broadcast ended at 12:45 am, they did some closing remarks for another 10 minutes before the concert ended. It was too funny seeing how Maru (Kanjani8) was trying to give some witty remarks for each group.
By the time I actually got home, it was past 2:00 am. I genuinely felt that I’m probably a little too old to stay up so late, but still grateful for an unforgettable experience to see everyone live in action saying goodbye to 2019 and welcoming 2020. Thank you!!!
I’ll try to keep up with more interesting travelogs and Johnny’s related posts this year too!!! Thank you for reading!!!