Oh btw whenever you see “Love” in inverted commas, it’s when they are actually using the word in English, and not using the Japanese counterpart, 愛. If it’s without the inverted commas, it means they were using 愛.
Original article here: http://www.oricon.co.jp/special/958/
The 39th single, “Love” is a splendid ballad tune used for the Japanese Red Cross 20th Blood Donation Campaign. As they have been together for almost 10 years now, the AAA members are able spin out their story, and leave a deep impression with this heartwarming melody line.
After years of being together, we understand each other, so we cover for each other.
— “Love” is a song that gradually resounds in one’s heart, and has become quite an outstanding ballad, hasn’t it?
Nishijima: This song depicts love as something that exists in many different shapes and forms, so we’re singing about this wide spectrum of love. Up until now, there has been many times love has been sung about in the first person in which love is directed to a certain someone, but this time we’re singing about love with everyone’s hands held together. Well, we are not literally holding hands, but it feels something like that. (laughs)
In the beginning of the year, although it was our first time performing this song in front of our fans, without us prompting them, they began clapping to the beat and in an instant, the hall was enveloped with a warm atmosphere. Even without reading through all of the lyrics or fully understanding it, we believe that this is a song that can be impactful to the people who listen to it just with its melody. Recently, I’ve realised there are people who are prone to viewing their circumstances in a negative light, but even for those people, I think this is not just an easy listening song, but also a song that can ease into and connect to their hearts.
Atae: It’s been 4 years since we have released a ballad as a single. Although the song may be a ballad, it’s a song that is able to cheer people up. We took turns singing parts, and in the end, we sang together, “Our dreams are connected by a big love. Let us both, you and me, be connected by this love”. At that part, all of the members’ thoughts and feelings were piled up one after another. At that time, smiles just kept pouring out naturally.
— Thus, when all seven of your voices come together (the chorus work), it’s not an exaggeration to say that becomes the spirit of the song right?
Atae: Yeah, that is to wrap up the verses and the bridge. When many voices sing that part together, perhaps the feeling of “Love” becomes even more prominent. I am certain that this feeling of “Love” can’t be expressed if there was only one person. As a coed group with both guys and girls, I believe we are able to present not just “Love” between the opposite sexes but also family, friendships and all other kinds of love.
— Naturally, as friends and comrades, you all in AAA value teamwork, and are able to represent that universal perspective. One can really feel how each and every word is significant.
Nishijima: This may be different from what is literally written in the lyrics, but basically, the message of the song is that our dreams are all connected by the same, big love. As in you and I, we, are all connected through love.
Sueyoshi: This time, having a title based on love, things like bonds and relationships were used as themes , but we were focusing on every aspect of it. Before love and bonds can be formed, surely connections must be made right? Even in the music video, we took it all in one take so that we can demonstrate that. As the seven of us and the kids paint out the story, I believe we were able to show the very warmth that was intended of this song even just through the music video. And on a personal note, this was the first time for me singing the first lines of a song, so now every time we give performances for this song, I get nervous. (laughs)
— That nervousness that you mentioned, are the other members able to feel it?
Nishijima: We definitely do. (immediate reply)
Atae: But once we know that someone is nervous, we’ll all cover for each other.
Sueyoshi: After all, we’ve been together all these years, we notice when another member is having a hard time, so we’ll do whatever we can to cover for them.
Nishijiima: It’s a kind of “Love” where we look out for each other. (laughs)
Sueyoshi: A considerate “Love”.
— Besides that, is there “Love” that is unique to only AAA?
Nishijima: That “Love” when someone serves food for me. (laughs)
Atae: That would be Uno-chan. She is always doing that.
Sueyoshi: For me it’s Chiaki.
When everyone’s feelings are connected by “Love”, many goals and dreams come true
— So the female members take on rather motherly roles in the group.
Nishijima: I think I probably do that too though. When we all go out to eat, I tend to be always near where the pot or the nabe is. So naturally, I’ll serve everyone’s food for them. That probably happens pretty often. (laughs)
Sueyoshi: I’m also quite mindful, so I usually serve myself too. However, when someone kindly serves me, I’ll just obediently let myself get spoilt.
Nishijima: But Shuta, you have your own way of eating though. In Shuta’s case, we understand that so it’s a “Love” where we don’t serve you. (laughs)
Atae: For me it’s a “Love” where I don’t do things on my own. (laughs)
Nishijima: Each member has their own distinctive way of eating, so we serve each other according to our needs, it’s the sort of “Love” where we are mindful of each other. (laughs)
Sueyoshi: Yeah, we’re connected like that.
— So about how AAA rang the New Year with “Love”
Atae: Honestly, then it was embarrassing because words like “Thank You” or words of gratitude were not something that we members would say to each other often.
— So the closer you become, the harder it gets to really say how you really feel.
Atae: Even just the other day, I made a blunder, so at that time, I sent a LINE to the members saying that I was sorry, and everyone replied back with, “Don’t worry about it.” Nishijima didn’t though.
Nishijima: The reverse of “Love”. (laughs)
Atae: However, recently, those things I harboured inside and was always too embarrassed to say, I have begun to be able to say everything to the members. I think it is also because I feel wrapped up by “Love”.
Nishijima: Also, in regards to members in the past, we held some kind of pride within ourselves. There was a time where we desperately tried to hide our weaknesses but for me personally, I began to think that I couldn’t go on like that. Only recently, I have been able to properly speak out about my weak points. But this is not because we were seeking each other’s help, but instead, we could do it because of the presence of “unseen bonds” as written in the lyrics.
— Well then one last thing, there is a part in the lyrics that talks about painting the future. As the first release of 2014, please tell us your goals for 2014.
Nishijima: I want to find contentment in my life…I want to live a contented live by having a balance between both my work life and my private life. That’s because no matter what I did, this work caused my life to become topsy-turvy. For example, I want to make sure that I always have three meals a day, and live properly as much as I can. (laughs)
When I’m back home and comfortably relaxed on my bed (I purchased a bed that has a comfortable mat like the ones in hospitals), if I’m not careful, I’ll just spend all my time sleeping on my rest day. I’m usually not in the habit of eating breakfast, so recently, I’ve resolved to wake up early whenever I can to do so. It may be just a really small matter, but I think fundamental things like that are important.
Sueyoshi: For me, since AAA is soon approaching 10 years, this year both personally and as a group, I want to break out of my shell and be born anew.
— That’s serious business.
Nishijima: That’s the opposite of me. Mine is so meagre in comparison that I feel embarrassed now. (laughs)
Sueyoshi: But when you build up even on the small things, they are surely linked to the future. Also, it’ll be good if we could appear on TV and the news, but in the end, when it comes to AAA, our main appeal is through experiencing our lives, so it’ll be great if more and more people could come and see us. Just by seeing everyone being able to enjoy themselves, I would like to give the best live stage performance like never before!
Atae: As for me, I would like to spend my time off well. (laughs)
Everyone’s deadpan serious when it comes to work, so overworking ourselves and not taking time off will make us suffocated. Usually, my way of relieving stress is by going overseas, but this year, I want to discover something new to do.
Nishijima: After all, 2014 is about finding contentment! (laughs)
Sueyoshi: I believe that when everyone’s feelings are connected by “Love”, many goals and dreams come true.