Yuko Nakazawa, or Nakazawa Yuko is a Japanese pop music singer, gravure idol, and actress. She became involved in the really popular Japanese female pop music group Morning Musume. Yuko took the leadership position of the group upon the creation of the large idol project called Hello! Project. I don’t know why they put an exclamation mark after that word but that’s just the way they decided to write it I guess. Yuko joined Morning Musume in 1997 and then “graduated” or left the group in 2001. The way in which she joined the group is interesting. It was back in 1997 that she was one of five people who were runners-up following a talent contest. Tsunku, a musician and producer offered her and these four other girls a chance to be taken under his guidance and direction. He told them that this would happen under one condition. That condition was that these girls had to sell 50,000 copies of the single Ai no Tane in just five days.
The group of girls was able to do that in four days and Morning Musume was born! I had written about Yuko Nakazawa in 2012 but I have covered information about her acting work and the musical collaborations she had after leaving Morning Musume.
With her departure, she became the first Morning Musume member to start her own solo singing career. Yuko was in Morning Musume as part of its first generation which had four other members. One of these was Aya Ishiguro. Ishiguro graduated from the group in early 2000.
Yuko Nakazawa has the nickname Big Sis. Yuko entered the world on June 19, 1973. A native of Kyoto, Japan, Nakazawa at 43 remains the oldest former Morning Musume member. Yuko stands at 159 centimeters tall. She likes the color purple. Yuko enjoys eating squid and fresh, boiled white rice. She dislikes eating bananas, tomatoes, miso soup with bean curd, and onions. She has the unusual habit of biting her tongue when asleep. Yuko really enjoys the summer. Her favorite quote is “survival of the fittest.” By the time of her graduation on April 15, 2001, Nakazawa was 27. But she still held her title as leader of Hello! Project.
Yuko has released two solo albums. Her debut album Dai Isshou came out in December 1998. Her second album released was Dai Nishou Tsuyogari. She has a Best Of album called Legend. Yuko’s movie appearances include Pinch Runner and Atsuhime Number 1. On March 31, 2009, Nakazawa also left the Hello! Project label. In the beginning of 2011, Nakazawa became part of another musical group called Dream Morning Musume. The group released their debut album Dreams 1 in April 2011.
Nakazawa Yuko and being a gravure idol
Nakazawa has also taken her talents to modeling. For Morning Musume’s 1st photo book, she posed in a beautiful black bikini! These Japanese idol singers have done modeling work and they are really beautiful! More recently, Ayumi Ishida has done modeling work as well. She released two photo books. They are Ishida Ayumi (2013) and Shine More (2014).
Yuko Nakazawa: personal life
She became engaged in December 2011 and became officially married on April 1, 2012. Nakazawa Yuko married a 39 year-old IT Company executive. She spends time between Tokyo and Fukuoka. Nakazawa gave birth to a baby boy on May 7, 2015 at the age of 41.
Other Interesting facts about Yuko Nakazawa
- Yuko is considered an “older sister” for many of the younger members in the Hello! Project label.
- Yuko has an aggressive character.
- She has gotten used to speaking Japanese in the Tokyo dialect.
- She has a sister and a niece.
- She listened to punk music at one time.
- She does not like to use phones and does not answer the phone very much.
- She said that her reason for leaving Morning Musume was that she felt like she was limited from taking part in the group’s activities because of her age. Yuko started at the age of 24 with Morning Musume which is later than the other members would start. She also said that she wanted to concentrate on other things in her 30s.
- She took part in a group called H.P. All Stars in 2004.
- She has two Chihuahuas.
- She is the second current or former Morning Musume member to give birth in 2015. Miki Fujimoto (Shoji) gave birth to a baby girl on August 1, 2015.
- Nakazawa’s last single with Morning Musume was Ren’ai Revolution 21.
Note: all images are from http://www.hello-online.org.