In 2003, this beloved group of charming pre-teens with a girl-next-door vibe debuted. They were a powerhouse for talent, each girl showing a spark in certain areas of strength. SweetS had the personality, the chemistry, the vocals, and the visuals that made them so unforgettable to all of us. These 5 found a place in our hearts: Aki, the bossy but caring leader; Aya, the quirky, quiet, smart vocalist; Haruna, the sweetheart with the heavenly voice; Miori, the secret weapon and charm; and Mai, the personality with passion and drive. For some, of us, they meant the world. For many, they were one of the staples of J-pop in the era they were in. Although they only had minor success, SweetS provided substance to the J-pop fanbase, especially overseas. SweetS fans were one of the most peaceful and tight-knit communities around, because their talent brought us together.
On June 7, 2006, SweetS had their final release and disbandment as a group. The months between Bitter Sweets release and Color of Tears release were a strange time within the SweetS community, because the anticipation of a new single also meant the end of SweetS. This group had only been active for a little under three years, but they had already made a place in our hearts. I know I’m not the only one that remembers checking SweetSdesu forums daily — not just for SweetS news, but after a while just to talk with fellow fans. SweetS was a part of our daily routine. Time with this amazing group was short, but the memories of anticipating live performances, releases, interviews, and guest appearances on variety shows and laughing over them with friends from all over the world sits dearly with us. June 7 was one of the saddest days of my life. The SweetS fans made a strong bond not just with each other, but also formed a genuine love for the girls and their performance abilities themselves.
SweetS will always be a part of us. I know they’ll always be a part of my childhood. Ten years later and we’re still here. I know we’ll never have our 5 hearts that beat as 1 back in the way we miss so dearly, but I treasure 2003-2006 even more with age. Those were sweet times, every pun intended.
So where are the girls now?
Aki is currently just being awesome in Tokyo with her really cute dog. No. Really. She auditioned with EXPG back in 2011 to be in the LDH group FLOWER, along with some former avex members. However, it was just honorary auditions. Since then, Aki’s kept an online personality and is probably one of most easily accessible and responsive SweetS members! She and I have communicated some over the past few years. It appears as though she may have given up on her music dreams, but she keeps up an active social life with the other former members, notably Miori and Mai (this is a cute video and you should watch it). She’s definitely worth a follow on instagram (and so is her dog… no really, do it) and is pretty friendly, but naturally I request that everyone will be respectful (although I know we’re one of the best mannered bunch out there) because it would be a shame to not have a chance to talk to her!
instagram • ameblo • twitter • aki’s dog’s instagram
Aya attempted a solo artist career from circa 2009 until 2013. She was with an indie label, Kool Groove Studios. I don’t know if it was just lack of proper budgeting or losing her passion, but Aya has more or less disappeared from any of the limelight for years now. It makes me sad to see vocal talent like hers go to waste, but she didn’t have enough structure on her own to create a successful solo career. I’m not sure what she’s up to these days, but I hope that she is happy and wish her all the best in the years to come. It would be great if she auditioned for a bigger label in a group atmosphere, but I will always respect her decision! Maybe the music biz just wasn’t for her after all.
instagram • ameblo
Haruna is by far the member I get asked about the most and who people seem to miss the most. I can agree, she was the heart of SweetS and she was the entire package. It’s no wonder she was so loved. However, Haruna hasn’t pursued any sort of celebrity career and keeps her social media private. She attended cosmetology school and graduated and was temporarily employed at ATENA salon. I’m not sure on the specifics since then, but I *think* the child she is with in this picture is hers (don’t quote me on that, I have no official source confirmation). She seems happy and still interacts with the other girls on social media. It looks as though she wants to be a normal and private person, and I respect her choices. I miss her a lot and would have loved to see a solo career but perhaps she has found her calling in life. Since there is not much to say about her public life after SweetS, please enjoy a few photos of her:
Miichan! She’s the most successful member post-SweetS. She’s a well-known actress in Japan and has landed leading roles in dramas (Ikemen Desu Ne and GTO being notable). She’s currently the vocalist for the band LAGOON. She jumped right into ad campaigns and appearing in music videos shortly after SweetS disbanded. I think it goes to say that she was probably the most underrated member of SweetS. She’ll always be that awkward kid I grew up with, though. Rumors reported that she was dating her former co-star Fujigaya (Ikemen Desu Ne, Kis-My-Ft2) in June 2015, but April 2016 it was reported that they had broken up. She’s doing very well for herself, but it’s nice to see that she’s still quirky and charming when she’s in interviews. I’m so happy to be able to follow her career all these years later, even if I don’t pay as much attention as I should.
My favorite of the SweetS. She’s only recently become active, but now she’s doing as much as Miori! Mai lived a normal life for a couple of years after SweetS, hanging out with her best friend Mai and being excited about her boyfriend. She appeared in some local commercials. She became a member of Yuigadokuson in 2014 and they began performing live and releasing singles in 2015. Mai definitely gets Most Improved in terms of vocal skill. Her hard work shows. Mai is always genki.
instagram • twitter • ameblo • yuidoku
And there we have it. 5 of the most important girls from 2003-2006, completely grown. Go ahead and take a moment to cry with their graduation footage: