entertainment

Mysterious singer GILLE finds fame on YouTube with English covers of J-Pop songs

9 Comments
By Steven Simonitch

While there are already a number of musical artists who achieved fame through YouTube, no one yet has done it quite like GILLE, a mysterious Japanese singer who became an online sensation for her English covers of Japanese pop songs.

GILLE first gained attention after uploading a cover of AKB48’s “Flying Get” to YouTube in February 2012. The video became an instant hit and has since drawn over 2.8 million views from 163 countries. She was then signed to Universal Music Japan in March and recorded her first full-length album, “I AM GILLE”, which was released on July 18.

English covers of Japanese songs are also nothing new, but GILLE nails it better than anyone has with lyrics that retain the meaning of the Japanese song without sounding awkward against the original rhythm and tempo. It doesn’t hurt that she has an impressively versatile voice either.

Despite her talent, GILLE initially tried to maintain anonymity by never showing her face in her videos, hoping to reach people with her voice “irrespective of [her] nationality or appearance.”

However, GILLE’s Japanese nationality was revealed in an announcement that the “Flying Get” cover had been endorsed by AKB48 executive producer Akimoto Yasushi in late June.

During a televised interview earlier this month (she again appeared as a silhouette), attentive Japanese fans were able to put another piece of the puzzle when they noticed she spoke with an accent particular to Miyazaki Prefecture.

Unable to hide her identity any longer, GILLE stepped out of the shadows on July 17, the day before her CD release, and revealed herself as TAHSA gee, a Miyazaki-born singer who studied music at a university in Los Angeles.

While she may not be the enigma she once was, GILLE continues to humbly hide her face from the public, even during live performances. Not that the public seems to mind: “I AM GILLE” debuted at No. 1 on the iTunes music chart and her videos continue to rack up thousands of views per day.

Now all that remains to be seen is if GILLE’s renditions of Japanese pop music can help the genre break through the English-speaking mainstream market. The competition is tough, that’s for sure.

To keep up with GILLE, be sure to follow her on Twitter, Facebook or YouTube. You can also purchase her debut album “I AM GILLE” from Amazon or digitally from iTunes.

Source: YouTube, Aramatheydidnt!, GILLE Official Site

© RocketNews24

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.


9 Comments
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I took a look/listen of her cover of Rolling In The Deep and Grenade. Whoever thought of the anonymity was spot-on - good video. Good vocals too. The way to be discovered is the way GILLE has done it (and isn't this how Bieber and others got started?)

Good luck to you, young GILLE!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

all that remains to be seen is if GILLE’s renditions of Japanese pop music can help the genre break through the English-speaking mainstream market.

And of course JT, RocketNews24, and the Akimoto (who's behind this manufactured "mystery") will do their best to make it so.

Great "reporting" again, JT!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I never knew...but I don't listen to akb48 so..

0 ( +0 / -0 )

nice voice but translating crap J lyrics into crap E lyrics, whats the point? to paraphrase Sir Paul "you think that people would have had enough of crappy pop songs, I look at youtube and I see it isn't so"

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Yes to supdman

Tho I haven't seen Gille yet.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Um, no. Not a chance. Just checked her out on YouTube and found nothing but crap.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

just checked her out. good luck to her but it doesn't grab me. doesn't sound like anything new just abit like club music. good luck Gille

1 ( +1 / -0 )

all that remains to be seen is if GILLE’s renditions of Japanese pop music can help the genre break through the English-speaking mainstream market.

Universal Music Japan

If the Anglosphere wanted an "Oriental" singer she would've signed up to a label in America, UK or even Australia, no?

Face it, the English speaking world only wants Black or White pop acts.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Very talented singer. She will make it!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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