Japan's "Granny" Pop Sensation KBG84 Proves That Age Is Just A Number

By

CCSS NCSS-1
Photo Credit: YouTube (screen capture)

Girl bands - Music groups that feature women only have been around since the 1920's. However, none compares to Japan's latest pop sensation KBG84. That's because, with an average member age of 84, they are not just the country's hottest music band; they are also the oldest! But age has not hindered the "granny" group from releasing a hit single and performing to sold out shows in Tokyo and Osaka.

The 33-member group that includes women as young as 80 (minimum age) to a sprightly 97, is the brainchild of local musician Kikuo Tsuchida. They all hail from the remote, coral-fringed island of Kohima in Okinawa, which as you may have guessed, boasts one of the highest life expectancies in the world.

Photo Credit: Youtube (screen capture)

The name KBG84 that stands for Kohamajima Ba-chan Gasshodan (Kohamajima grandma chorus) is a smart play on a popular Japanese girl band called AKB48. However, its success can solely be attributed to the immense energy and enthusiasm of its elderly members. And if you think the women are just about singing, think again. The KBG84 is a “dance and vocal” band, and while their moves may not appear as "cool" as those of their younger counterparts, they are perfect for the middle-aged fans they cater to.

Like all girl bands KBG84 too has a diva - A pint-sized 92-year-old called Tomi Menaka. Normally hunched over her walking cane, Menaka comes to life when on stage, where she dances with joyous abandon to the traditional Okinawan music with a Tokyo-style pop twist. The queen bee that admits to a penchant for sweets, says she keeps in shape by cleaning her house on a regular basis. As for her youthful skin? That can be attributed to staying away from the harmful rays of the sun!

Photo Credit: Youtube (screen capture)

The details about how long the women have been performing together are a little hazy. However, they rose to fame recently following a sold-out tour in Osaka and Tokyo and the release of their first single, "Come On And Dance, Kohama Island.” In keeping with the modern trend, the group also filmed a music video that showcases their beautiful island as well as Menaka's superb dancing moves.

The newly found fame is bemusing to the unlikely pop stars who were a little miffed when they heard themselves being referred to as "idols." Menaka says she thought it meant " someone who had lived a long life and was at the gates of heaven." She was quite relieved to hear that it is another word for "entertainers." As she says with a toothy grin, “I hadn’t even been to Tokyo or Osaka. I wanted to go there before I went to heaven."

Photo Credit: Youtube (screen capture)

In fact, visiting the two cities was a great treat for this group whose members had never ventured outside the island before. In addition to the thrill of meeting their fans, the excursion also gave the grandmothers a chance to meet their grandkids - For some it was the first time!

Resources: guardian.co.uk,mtv.com,rocketnews24.com

Cite Article
Geography
258 Comments
  • GuineapigsruleWednesday, June 14, 2017 at 4:21 pm
    hahahahahahahahahahah so funny but also really cool
    • RILEY25Monday, May 1, 2017 at 5:39 am
      WOW
      • ngaireSaturday, April 29, 2017 at 4:16 pm
        wiked soooooooooo cooooooooooool!!!!!!!!!!
        • TakodaThursday, March 9, 2017 at 6:43 am
          I loved this article because it was so cool
          • XD😉😉😇😇Friday, February 17, 2017 at 8:03 am
            it is cool
            • comedian
              comedianSunday, January 29, 2017 at 3:09 pm
              that is amazing and inspiring!
              • coldocean
                coldoceanFriday, December 16, 2016 at 8:44 am
                Wow, they are amazing. that just proves that age is a number we use to keep track of how long we are here.
                • iheartnutella
                  iheartnutellaThursday, December 15, 2016 at 9:40 am
                  I love when people are like that! It's not about the age it's about feels!!!
                  • lailacat46
                    lailacat46Tuesday, December 13, 2016 at 9:58 am
                    omg!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!i did not know they had that much energy
                    • crazyunicorn333
                      crazyunicorn333Thursday, December 8, 2016 at 4:14 pm
                      They are yong inside and full of energy,it makes me happy. : )