Flashback Friday: Namie Amuro - Alarm (Live) | When Namie secured my coin

Namie Amuro - Alarm | Random J Pop

My first J-Pop love was Hikaru Utada. My second, was probably Namie Amuro.

My introduction to Namie Amuro was "Want me, want me", which then led me on to discover "WoWa". Which then had me tail back and fall into the rabbit hole to discover everything that came before. (Side note: Save yourself the trip and don't bother with anything in-between Sweet 19 blues and Style). But the point at which I became a fan was when I saw her performance of her song "Alarm" at Japan's 2004 MTV VMAs.

Namie didn't look like she was enjoying the performance for one second. A bitch looked dead inside. She was wearing the same damn belt she wore on the cover of an album she released 2 years prior and the same damn boots she wore the year before in a music video - foreshadowing her future contribution to the environment by fashion recycling. But the song she was performing to was bangin', she was giving me live vocals (however flat) and she was killing the choreo.

Namie didn't just snap once. A bitch snapped TWICE. Straight after watching this performance, I went on YesAsia, and bought me a copy of Queen of hip-pop and Style.

Namie had secured my coin.

It's easy to forget just how long Namie Amuro has been in the game for. Even at this point, she was pretty much 10 years into her career. Seasoned, but not quite a veteran. But this room for further growth and for Namie to strive is what makes her story so unique in comparison to her peers. Namie showed that even after 10 years, you can have a second and third wind, even after everybody has claimed that you'd already peaked. She's giving straggling ho's out here like Ayu and Kumi hope that they can do the same.

As much as I stanned this performance of hers, I never would have guessed that 10 years on from this moment that she would not only remain wholly relevant, but continue to expand her fan base, break records, change the game and redefine what it is to be a female J-Pop star in Japan. Who, in all honesty, would have ever thought it?


And don't be talking about Madonna. Respect to her where its due. Dem bones can still tour, but those records ain't been poppin' for a good minute and they ain't pushing Namie units despite releasing worldwide.

I also want to take this moment to acknowledge that the album version of "Alarm" ain't shit on the mix used for her VMA performance and that the music video was garbage. Namie Amuro: How to sell a song 101.