By Jenni / Special to The Yomiuri Chukosei ShimbunHey, guys! Nice to meet you. I’m Jenni, a creator-singer. I was born in Yamagata Prefecture and grew up in Las Vegas. Please remember me as I have joined this medley column from this month.
For my first installment, I will talk about how my curious title of “creator-singer” came about. In a nutshell, am I a YouTuber or a singer? (lol)
To start with, I’m basically a singer. Five years ago, when I was in the second year of high school, I passed a singing audition and began my activities as a solo singer in Tokyo. Then 17, I soon learned the difficulties of surviving in the industry.
Day after day, I would sing my own songs and cover songs on the street. My name did not get recognized at all. One time, only three people came to my show.
It was at that time that I got to know YouTube. I approached a band I knew well who debuted before me and had posted videos and sent messages to many people. Was it like three years ago? I then thought of doing the same thing myself a bit.
The result is that it changed my life. In my videos, I’ve introduced my favorite clothes and cosmetics and covered songs I love. I’ve just freely compiled in the video clips what I want to do. Little by little, my videos began receiving viewers, many of them women in my generation, who started feeling empathy toward me. Then it became even more fun for me to perform and express things. I learned everything about YouTube by myself. It still takes me eight hours to edit a five-minute video! (sweating)
So, my title of a video creator is what made me known as a singer. Maybe there was only one path — singing — for a singer to become famous in the past. But now, you can promote yourself first through videos and also let others like your songs. I’m glad I was born in a time when there are various ways to express myself.
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This article is a translation of the YouTube column that appeared last Friday in The Yomiuri Chukosei Shimbun, a weekly paper for junior high and high school students. The original Japanese text and the translation are carried alongside each other in that paper on the final Friday of every month.