Management agency Amuse is establishing a new company called AZEAL. Within the first three years, the company aims to sign three music artists who have the potential for nationwide tours that will attract hundreds of thousands of fans.
The first artist signed to the firm is 23-year-old singer Emi Tawata. Originally from Okinawa, she was a member of her school marching band. After finishing high school, Tawata went to Canada for language studies, and she became a singer for a street jazz band while she was there.
After returning to Japan, Tawata started composing and songwriting. In 2006, she began performing in Okinawa and last year released a single titled “Negai no Sora,” which achieved #1 on Okinawa’s indie charts. (It’s the above video clip – Richie.)
Tawata will make her major label debut (on a newly-formed label named techesko) with a mini-album called “Infinity,” which includes “Negai no Sora” and a reggae cover of Fumido’s “Yura Yura.” The album goes on sale April 23.
Emi Tawata’s links:
Stylistically, her musical influences are (via her blog): blues, soul, jazz, funk, bossa nova and pop. To see the importance of this announcement, and more importantly perhaps, the high expectations they have for Emi, check out the impressive list of artists (you’ll find BEGIN in there too) managed by Amuse.