One of the most popular bands in Japan, Mr.Children made their major debut in 1992 with the release of their first album, Everything. They are the second best selling artist in Japanese music history with fifty million albums and singles sold. Mr.Children soft, acoustic music, characterized by low-key vocals and intelligent lyrics. Mr.Children (without a space), or Misuchiru as the band is known in Japan, was formed in 1987 by Kazutoshi Sakurai, Kenichi Tahara, Keisuke Nakagawa, and Hideya Suzuki as the Walls. The band changed their name feeling that the Walls’ music had become political and dry and the band wished to broaden their horizons. They then auditioned at a music club called La Mama and played there a few times. Their popularity increased, and the band decided to try to debut as professionals. After a couple of failed demo tapes were sent they took off three months off in 1991 to recharge. On their return to La Mama, they had gained a new maturity of sound. A 1992 demo tape caught the attention of Inaba from Toy's Factory and the band acquired a contract with Bad Music. They then played as the opening act for Jun Sky Walkers. At this point, they met their current producer Takeshi Kobayashi, known as the music composer for Keisuke Kuwata and Kyoko Koizumi. In 1992, EVERYTHING was released. By the time of their third album, the band had decided they needed changes and moved to Waterfront Studios in New York. When the single Cross Road was used as the Japanese TV drama Dousoukai theme song, the band began to gain serious fame and the single sold one million copies. Their fifth single, innocent world, earned the Japan Record Award in 1994. They again won the award in 2004 with the single, Sign.
Mr. Children became involved in charity work, doing a collaboration song with Keisuke Kuwata of Southern All Stars, Kiseki no Hoshi, which was used as the campaign song for the Act Against AIDS concerts. In 1997, rumors began to circulate that the band was breaking up. Although this was denied, the band decided to take time out and Tahara and Nakagawa went to driving school. Sakurai bought a computer, which he used to compose music. Nakagawa and Suzuki started a side project band called Hayashi Hideo, and went on tour joined by Kenji Fujii from My Little Lover and Sawao Yamanaka from the Pillows. Sakurai, Takeshi Kobayashi and Ryuichi Sakamoto are involved in the project Bank Band, which started in 2005. Sakurai also teamed up with Gaku-MC in 2006 to make the single, Te wo dasuna for the World Cup and with Bank Band to make the single To U. In 2006, group released their twenty ninth single Shirushi, which was used as a theme song of 2006's controversial Japanese television drama by NTV 14 year-old Mother. In an Oricon survey in 2006, 1,200 men and women in their 20-30s were asked who they'd want to sing at their wedding. Mr.Children ranked #2.
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