Yes, I KNOW “Snowballing SMAP” would’ve been a helluva funnier title, but trust me, this is already plenty gay as-is.
As I’d mentioned before, all of this online karaoke originated in Yahoo! voice chats. One of the innovations Jet Ready Go (founder of mm-bbs) devised was to hold an American Idol-style contest called, shockingly enough, BBS Idol. I don’t know what prompted him to do this, I wasn’t really friends with him at this point, but I’m reasonably sure it was motivated by the thought of him being able to webcam with underage asian girls. Crazy, I know.
I think it was sometime during the first of these contests that somebody came up with the idea of four of us guys singing “Sekai ni Hitotsu Dake no Hana” by SMAP. Partly because it was a huge hit at the time in Japan, but partly because it was almost entirely the girls who did all of the singing, and they felt it was high time WE started embarrassing ourselves. So, I went in with Kenji, Kris, and whoever else was game (honestly, I can’t remember if it was just the three of us or if there was a fourth, fifth, or eightieth member. I know a recording exists SOMEWHERE, I still have Kris’ classic fuckup, sorry if I’m forgetting anyone.)
I spent nearly all of my free time at work that week memorizing the lyrics, all of them. I really loved the song, and still think it’s one of SMAP’s strongest ever, even after bringing it to new levels of overkill from the sheer number of times EVERYONE’s heard it. Anyway, showtime came & went, and we all survived (some of the chat “audience” may not have,) and THEN someone got the brilliant idea for us to actually RECORD a cover version. This was completely stupid, as were we, but it sounded fun, and that was it.
Our lineup was made of Kenji, Nekobus, Jet Ready Go, and myself. Kris was probably included at the start, but he’d actually been able to webcam with the underage girls, and we really didn’t see or hear from him again. We hadn’t recorded one note & already we’d lost a member. Most bands had to put out 2 or 3 albums before someone broke off, we were already WAY ahead of the game!
After many, many, MANY mixes, mostly trying to get a good balance of the voices & still not being 100% happy with the overall vocal performance, I realized we kinda sucked. Mainly, we just were so goddamned halfhearted! Like a bunch of wounded pantywaists singing just loud enough for the microphone to pick up. We did a few retakes, I recorded a backing harmony vocal… and then it hit me. WE NEED BACKUP SINGERS.
Unfortunately, the four of us were the only ones interested in doing this song at all, and we sure as hell weren’t gonna pull this one out of the fire. So, I did what any good record producer would do. I stole them from the fucking original. By doing a vocal rip, and then doing a second vocal rip on THAT, I had… well, something that sounded enough like the chorus in a slightly different pitch? Whatever, GOOD ENOUGH. Now we had S-M-FUCKING-A-P THEMSELVES on our recording. Or their backup singers. Goddamn all sound alike to me.
So we’d done it. And like any new act, we thought we could do it again. We immediately recorded a cover of “Lion Heart” and on September 17th of 2003, we posted the whole damn thing to mm-bbs & waited for the chicks to bust down our doors. And we waited. TEN FUCKING YEARS. Bitches.
Now here’s where it gets weird. Er.
Jet is insane. You know this, I know this, he knows this. He wanted to make a CD cover, and he got each of us to pose for a spoof of the Lion Heart CD cover. I’m sure he must have the full-size one somewhere, I only ever got to see a tiny 150 x 150 pixel version. THEN he printed the damn thing out, stuck it in a CD case with a burned CD of our songs, THEN shrink wrapped it, THEN took it to the fucking Kinokuniya & stuck it IN THE FUCKING CD RACKS. On several occasions. He also made up mock listings for YesAsia, though I’m sure he had greater difficulty sneaking it onto their site.
Yup. Pretty fucking insane. But, ohhhhhhh that wasn’t the end of it. Not by a long shot. In the head.
BBSMAP – 世界に一つだけの花 / らいおんハート