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Updated May 31, 2020 at 04:13AM EDT by Y F.

Added May 30, 2020 at 09:55AM EDT by Ducky Mioda.

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J-pop is basically an abbreviation of the term "Japanese pop" and, as its name appears to tell, has its origins in Japan. While it may not be as popular as K-pop, at least it has brought Japanese audiences bands such as Morning Musume and Juice=Juice.


Roots in Japanese rock (1960s-80s)

After the end of the Allied occupation of Japan, the country had just begun to be a global power when it came to the economy and politics. In the first three decades of post-occupation Japan, after music from the Beatles and the Beach Boys entered the Japanese music market, Japanese rock bands such as Happy End decided to mix their original genre with traditional Japanese music. Pop music from Japan, however, was still known as kayōkyoku (a term used from the 1920s to describe such music that literally means "lyric singing music") in the 1960s, but the term "J-pop" superseded that term by the end of the 1990s

J-pop as a mainstream musical genre (1990s-present)

As the term "J-pop" became more mainstream when referring to almost all parts of Japanese popular music, and as Japanese bands such as Morning Musume and Mr. Children rose to prominence in the 1990s, the J-pop market grew bigger and bigger until its first-ever commercial peak late in the decade. The diversification of the genre into different sub-genres increased the popularity of J-pop, and by this point, Japanese idol groups had been popularized, further diversifying the entire J-pop market.

Notable J-pop artists

Morning Musume

Currently under a 14-member formation as of 2020 [1], this all-female J-pop group was formed in 1997 under a 5-member formation consisting of Nazakawa Yuuko, Ishiguro Aya, Iida Kaori, Abe Natsumi, and Fukuda Asuka, and hasn't turned back since, thanks to its position as the second-to-bestselling female group on the Oricon charts as of February 2012 [1]. Since its debut album, "First Time", Morning Musume has moved on to release 15 studio albums and 68 singles (examples below).


Having disbanded in 2017, this J-pop group (also all-female) consisted of five members [2], and debuted in 2005. Their musical career started with the single "Sakura Chihari", and went on to have 31 singles released until 2017 (examples below).

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