The following is from V6’s 20th anniversary tour pamphlet in which each member was asked to choose their favourite 10 singles.
We collected each member’s favourite 10 singles
From the 45 singles they’ve released to date, each member thought as hard as they could and selected 10, which we’re presenting to you!
// Sakamoto Masayuki
We were born all thanks to our debut song!
- MUSIC FOR THE PEOPLE (1995.11.01) : You could say it’s V6’s creator… With this song, we spread our wings and flew, and so it’s an extremely precious work that’s inseparable from us. With a debut song, you could say things never change… When this song starts playing in concert, all of us — members and fans — as one, we turn back the clock.
- 愛なんだ (1997.01.20) : It was thanks to Inohara that Tamaki (Koji) wrote this song for us. When I first heard the demo tape, I thought “(we’ve done nothing but Eurobeat up until this point, so) this opened up a new path for us.” The lyrics are also really catchy. In the beginning, it’s not a song you really dance to, so it’s a song where you can have fun with the choreography.
- 本気がいっぱい (1997.04.03) : I like this song because it’s one where everyone can get fired up to it in concert no matter what. Anyway, when it comes to songs where the fans who’re coming to the venue can have fun, I think this one’s great. This song is also the first one where we all went together overseas and shot the PV, so I’ve got a great memory of it.
- WAになっておどろう (1997.07.09) : Starting with “愛なんだ,” we were dancing a lot less in our songs… this song is the same. But when you listen to it, it’s a lot of fun, and from kindergarten to elementary school, into middle school… lots of students in different schools have used this song at athletics festivals, and this is the song we sang at Kouhaku, so I’ve got a lot of memories of it.
- 自由であるために (1999.05.12) : For me personally, I like rock songs. I really like the lyrics of this song, too. That’s not to say I normally listen to rock songs, but surprisingly, I like to sing rock songs. So this one made me happy. Singing this song left a big impression on me, doing it in the rain on a television show.
- サンダーバード -your voice- (2004.08.04) : We all did the voice acting for the dub of this movie… I never thought I’d be playing the part of everyone’s father (laughs). The “3, 2, 1” countdown in “Thunderbirds” is famous, so making a new “Thunderbirds” made me really happy.
- GUILTY (2009.09.02) : Somehow, with the success of this song, we all started feeling more “adult.” The timing matched up really well with this song. This one has a flavour to it that I like. On our Asia tour, to people even outside of Japan, I was happy to show people a new V6.
- Sexy.Honey.Bunny! (2011.08.24) : Actually, everyone recorded themselves doing the “sexy,” but for whatever reason, I got picked (laughs). When we do the intro, and then I say “sexy” and get fired up like “bam!” the second right after that, so it’s a joy only I know. I like unconventional songs that we as pros can play around to.
- バリバリBUDDY! (2012.02.15) : People from a lot of different fields danced with us in the PV for this song, but they actually came to the venue not knowing the choreography, so we all ended up getting really sweaty. All of us and all the staff made it. We added a different power into it and it increased our enjoyment of it.
- ROCK YOUR SOUL (2012.12.26) : We sang this song like an anime song, so it was a ton of fun! I’ve liked rock and anime songs from the start, so I was happy the second I heard it. And in any case, singing it felt great. At the event for the song, Kenshiro1 came… but the six of us had to transport him (laughs).
// Nagano Hiroshi
How I felt at the time is still the image I have of each song
- MUSIC FOR THE PEOPLE (1995.11.01) : It’s our debut song, so of course it’s like, “it all started here” or “we did a lot of Eurobeat back then,” and it’s a song that really takes me back. The intro is really impactful. I remember singing this on a volleyball court, too (laughs).
- TAKE ME HIGHER (1996.09.16) : We’d been doing songs on programs for a year at that time, but with this song, it really felt like we became able to do backflips. The choreography had us doing backflips at the very end of the coda, so we couldn’t not do it (laughs). It was really scary at first.
- 愛なんだ (1997.01.20) : After doing 4 really intense songs since our debut, the mood changed really suddenly with this song. It’s a bright song, a song everyone can hum, and I think it’s great. Tamaki Koji wrote the song for us, and I remember being really impressed and feeling like the demo tape was really free-spirited (laughs).
- 愛のMelody (2001.02.28) : This is a song where the sight of the fans all doing the hand motions with us in concert really comes to mind. Everyone beautifully moving as one; it’s great. It’s like “everyone remembers the choreography!” and that also makes me really happy.
- 蝶 (2008.05.28) : The lyrics are really fresh and something we hadn’t done up until that point, and the choreography has a lot of steps in it, so it’s one I really remember. And speaking of, we were doing the choreography the day before we shot the PV, and this is the only song where we’ve done that. All of us, right up until before the shoot, were paying way closer attention to the “choreography check.”
- kEEP oN. (2012.08.08) : It’s a song that Ken and Inohara worked really deeply on for us. Out of all our songs, it’s the most playful, and it’s got a lot of different components to it. The lyrics also have a lot of different countenances to them, and the full version is over six minutes long… there’s really no other song like this one, right (laughs).
- Timeless (2015.05.08) : It’s our newest song, and also our first single during our 20th year, and the lyrics are like “who we are now,” “the current V6,” “the six of us’s bond,” and so it really resonates in my heart.
- HONEY BEAT (2007.01.31) : As an easy to understand song of encouragement, it’s a song that gets its point across. We change into school uniforms and gloves and sing at stand-up mics. The choreography is in the style of cheerleading, and so the fans can all do it along with us. I really love the “smile, smile” part.
- Orange (2005.10.12) : It was the first song we did in the British Rock style, and I love the whole atmosphere of it. It’s not like it goes “BAM!” and you get super fired up at the beginning, so it’s a song that gradually swells and gets you more excited, but I really like that kind of feeling. You can feel the song expanding.
- 出せない手紙 (2001.08.29) : Even now, the song draws me into its world, like “I wonder why, this kind of painful feeling…” In concert, we’ve stood on steep slopes and sang it, and it was like we were slipping away, and so even though it was this really painful ballad, I remember standing there singing and locking my knees (laughs).
// Inohara Yoshihiko
My memories of the writers of the songs are reborn with them
- IN THE WIND (2000.05.10) : It’s a song that Sato Chikuzen wrote for us, and it’s really cool, and I really like it, but it’s also really hard to sing. I remember having a lot of trouble during recording. Even now, it’s the only song I still want to practice. I’ll often hum it and actually practice it by myself.
- 野性の花 (2000.02.02) : It was during a time when we wanted to mature as a group, and I feel like we felt like “singing this kind of song would be good,” and it’s a song I’m happy we sang. Even though it’s got those positive lyrics like “we’ll keep going forward,” there’s hope in the lyrics, and it’s a mesmerizing song.
- UTAO-UTAO (2005.06.22) : It’s the first song that my best friend, Akachimachi Kaito, wrote for V6. The lyrics that are like “it’s like a modern version of ‘Tom and Jerry’,” it’s like, “I was chasing you around but before I knew it, I was being chased around” and I think we got really into that at the time.
- グッデイ!! (2006.06.14) : This was the first song for my drama, “Keishichou Sousa Ikka 9-gakari” that will be celebrating its 10th year on the air this year. Musically, it’s a very bright and happy kinda song, so it might seem a little childish, so you might be thinking, “does this really fit for a drama about the police?” but it’s actually a very adult kind of song.
- バリバリBUDDY! (2012.02.15) : It was a reaaaally slow song in the very beginning (laughs). As we got together and talked about it more, we thought like, “should we maybe speed it up?” and got it to a song we could do on a music show in exactly 3 minutes. It’s a challenge we made and a song with a goal in mind.
- kEEP oN. (2012.08.08) : Compared to the song before this one, “バリバリBUDDY!” that fit perfectly into three minutes, this song is twice that and super long at 6 minutes and 6 seconds (laughs). But I think that kind of swing in the other direction is fun. I feel confident about it, like “this is a thing that only V6 could do, right?”
- Sexy.Honey.Bunny! (2011.08.24) : This was the first in the sequence of songs we released that started from when we were like “we wanna switch up V6’s music.” From that point, we started meeting directly with the writers and producers and getting everyone in on the making of songs. When we met the first time, we realized it was a song that’d need even more brushing up (laughs).
- 愛なんだ (1997.01.20) : Tamaki Koji wrote this for us, and it’s a song that I feel is a little soulful, and it’s just a great song. We’d always done Eurobeat songs up until that point, so we were like “is it all right to switch it up like this?” and were a little worried, but we also felt like “we have to break out of that,” so it was quite the challenge for us.
- Orange (2005.10.12) : V6’s 10th anniversary song. We felt like “it’s such a cool song! But, do we want to bring this in right now as we’re celebrating our 10th anniversary?” but I liked that (laughs). Those kinds of challenges I feel are necessary if you want to keep going for a long time.
- BEAT YOUR HEART (1996.05.29) : It’s a song full of originality. There are a lot of rap songs, but none up until that point that really grabbed me musically, so this song is extraordinary for me. As you’re wondering if the rap is going to just keep going, it all of a sudden does a complete 180 and comes in with “[scale that] huge wall~” and the way it gets you pumped up is great.
// Morita Go
Along with the music, the PV shoots and the choreography flood back to me
- Timeless (2015.05.08) : I love everything about this, from the song to the outfits we wore. With this sort of quiet maturity, it’s like, “the feel of V6 lately” is great. With this song in particular, after the A and B melody lines quietly begin, when the hook kicks in, it gives off a “expansive feeling,” and it’s comfortable and great even just to sing, I think.
- GUILTY (2009.09.02) : The song begins quietly, but the lyrics about adultery have a pretty intense feel to them, and so there’s a gap there, so I like each and every part of it. There’s one powerful part of the choreography that I get really into… try to guess what it is (laughs).
- 涙のアトが消える頃 (2014.08.27) : We each have our own solo parts in this, and it feels like the world in the song spreads out, and it really feels like it’s really a recent V6-ish song. With the six of us’s voices, it really feels like the song’s worldview unfolds. And beyond that, I just love the choreography (laughs).
- 太陽のあたる場所 (199.07.14) : The moment the intro starts, everything about the time when the song came out just comes back to me like BAM. From “Shin Oretachi no Tabi Ver.1999 (Our New Journey Ver.1999)” to the shooting for the PV. While we were shooting the PV at this abandoned factory, this little baby bird fell out of a bird’s nest, and I remember Inohara-kun bravely looking after it.
- 野性の花 (2000.02.02) : I remember this as being for the drama, “Gekka no Kishi,” but I also just think it’s a great song. It’s 15 years old, but even when I listen to it now, I don’t feel its age. And for sure, we all wore suits when we shot the PV. I really liked the steps for the A melody line (laughs).
- IN THE WIND (2000.05.10) : This one’s just a song that I intuitively like, without any real reason. I love the feeling before the hook kicks in with “words aren’t enough…” But, it’s a really hard song to sing. Especially the chorus. Even so, when we sing it now, it’s kinda neat. It’s another song that just hasn’t grown stale.
- Believe Your Smile (1999.03.31) : It’s a song we’ve sang in concerts a lot, so the fans’ faces just light up with the music. We all come together with the choreography, too, and it feels like all our hands are moving as one, and with the penlights all lit up and sparkling, so it’s a song that’s tied up with the concert scenery.
- COSMIC RESCUE (2003.07.02) : It’s a fresh song, and I also like its melody. Especially the beginning where the intro kicks in — I still find myself unconsciously humming it to myself (laughs). It was for a movie that the 3 of us in Kamisen starred in, so I really remember that, and at the time I was thinking like “talking about space… what a huge theme!”
- Sexy.Honey.Bunny! (2011.08.24) : This one pumps me up. Nishidera Gota-san acted as producer on this one for us, bringing in what’s great about us, and each and every one of our personalities, and it turned into a song that was both a challenge but one we could attack. We were at a crossroads as a group, and he really pushed us along.
- Sky’s the Limit (2014.10.22) : Before I say that it’s a song I like, before this one, our last two singles had been ballands, so after we were all really feeling like “we’ve been waiting!” for another dance number. The chorus feels like a sprint, too, and it’s just a song that feels good to sing.
// Miyake Ken
I’ve narrowed this list down to my 10 favourite songs, including choreography
- TAKE ME HIGHER (1996.09.16) : We in Kamisen would do backflips during performances, and Sakamoto-kun and Inohara-kun could do them, too, so we got to talking like, “if Nagano-kun could do one, we could all do backflips together…” so we tacked the backflips on at the end of the choreography (laughs). It was scary having the concrete underneath us.
- 愛なんだ (1997.01.20) : This song all of a sudden does a complete 180. Inohara-kun had starred in a drama with Tamaki (Koji)-san and that ended up being the impetus for him to write this for us. He’d said “a surprise is good,” and the demo tape he recorded in his bathroom for us was really neat!
- 本気がいっぱい (1997.04.03) : This is the first song where we shot the PV overseas. We’d been in LA, Vegas, and Hawaii shooting our photobook around that time, and we shot this while we were in LA, and I just generally remember everyone it being a PV where everyone was genuinely laughing and smiling during it.
- Believe Your Smile (1999.03.31) : Even now, it’s already become a song we can’t really dance to, but we really did the dance for it a lot when it came out. We’d do the Which Way (a kind of lock dance step)and Inohara-kun would do a backflip during the breakdown. It gets me all excited, and I think like, wouldn’t it be nice if we could dance it one more time?
- CHANGE THE WORLD (2000.10.25) : I was really happy this was chosen as a theme song for “Inuyasha.” And I’m also happy that it’s got the same title as a song I like by Eric Clapton. Though they have the same name, the songs go in completely different directions, but I think that’s neat.
- 愛のMelody (2001.02.28) : I think we first showed off this song when we went on our Asia tour through Taiwan. That time period left a lot of memories. I like the PV for this one, too. Even now, I’m really happy when the fans do the hand motions with us. There’s no other song to compare it to for that feeling of unity.
- COSMIC RESCUE (2003.07.02) : With this song, though it’s a song that rides on the rhythm, for whatever reason, the melody line is kind of painful. The “shoooting staaaar~” part of the chorus will just grab my heart… but I really like that feeling. There’s a unique part of the choreography where it’s like we draw a parabola with our hands, and I think that’s great, too.
- Sky’s the Limit (2014.10.22) : We’d actually had this song since we did “ROCK YOUR SOUL,” so it had quite a good reputation among the other members and the staff. I like the choreography, too. After having done ballads, this song felt like it brought out the V6-like atmosphere. It’s really easy to dance to, and it pumps me up.
- Timeless (2015.05.08) : Whether it’s the A melody line, the B melody line, the chorus… no matter what you pick, it’s a really great song. If, for example, we’d done this when we were younger, it probably wouldn’t have been as persuasive. I especialy think Go’s “Timeless~” part is great.
- Darling (2003.05.28) : I love this song and the choreography. When I go to karaoke with people I know, this song somehow ends up in our queue (laughs). I’ll be like “the actual video came up!” … but I absolutely will not sing it (laughs). We did flips off the wall one time when we performed this on “Music Station.”2 I was so nervous~
// Okada Junichi
Thinking about myself at these times, a lot of different things come back to life
- 愛なんだ (1997.01.20) : We’d been doing only Eurobeat-style songs since our debut, and when Tamaki Koji-san wrote this for us, our whole mood changed just like that. That year (1997) is the year we started doing “Gakkou e Ikou!” and this song makes me feel like “we’re gonna go cheer on students!”
- 本気がいっぱい (1997.04.03) : This was the first time we’d all used mic stands, and us singing and dancing in unison was impressive. Up until then, there was a lot of separation between Tonisen and Kamisen, so this was pretty fresh and a lot of fun. I actually remember the handing off of the mic stands not going very well (laughs).
- WAになっておどろう (1997.07.09) : Kindergarteners, elementary schoolers… little kids in general will often sing and dance this at sports days or during play dates and that makes me happy. We did this song at “Kouhaku,” as well, and I’m really happy when I meet people who were in the crowd who got to like the song from that. It makes me really happy to be in V6.
- GENERATION GAP (1997.11.06) : I personally like Fujii Fumiya-san (lyrics: Fujii Fumiya; music: Fujii Naoyuki), so I was really glad that he wrote this song for us. The melody is really easy to hum, and you can sing along all carefree, and our kouhai say they like it a lot, too, so I’m really grateful.
- over (1996.11.11) : This was the theme for the legendary drama, “PU-PU-PU” (laughs). Thinking about it now, I seriously felt like the life-sized Tonisen of that time came out in those lyrics — shining, full of hope. It makes me feel close to the footprints we’ve made.
- 太陽のあたる場所 (1999.07.14) : This was the theme song for another legendary drama, “Shin Oretachi no Tabi Ver.1999 (Our New Journey Ver.1999)” (laughs). At that time, I didn’t really like myself, but I wouldn’t give up on my future self. I ended up looking for my place in the sun (laughs). I wanted to be able to like myself one day… so that was the hope I was holding onto.
- 愛のMelody (2001.02.28) : This one’s a song where we were all wearing red outfits with tied neckties. The choreography is really easy to understand, so the fans will do the hand motions with us, and when they’re cheering us on in concert, it’s a song that gets me really fired up. You all shine when you do the hand motions!
- Darling (2003.05.28) : We were looking for things that we could do, so this song was one we did during a time we wanted to challenge ourselves. We didn’t do just regular backflips, but off of stands and pedestals… so while we were trying different things, we were adding to the things we could do. So, I remember this song as the one that gave birth to the “shoulder flip” where Nagano-kun flips me off his shoulders.
- UTAO-UTAO (2005.06.22) : While being thankful for being able to sing… at the time, I was thinking about how I have to change myself. That’s what I remember when I hear this song. I was on the verge of adulthood, and it was an era where I’d become a man, plant my feet firmly in my 30s, and become a proper man…
- Timeless (2015.05.08) : While holding onto the other members’ genetleness, I’m able to genuintely feel grateful for our fans. That’s what this song is. Dancing to this song in live performances makes me feel at ease, and it’s a song where I’m able to — all over again — feel the place that V6 has in my life.
. notes .
01. Kenshiro is the main character in “Fist of the North Star: Ken’s Rage,” the game for which “ROCK YOUR SOUL” is the title song.
02. You don’t actually need context or anything for this one, I’m just so happy he brought this up and it’s one of my favourite PFs and if you want to watch it, it’s 2003.05.30.