May’n, the singing voice of Macross Frontier’s Sheryl Nome, has dazzled fans in Anime Festival Asia Singapore for the past seven years since her first appearance at the inaugural AFA in 2008. This year also marks her 10th anniversary since her debut as a singer. A world tour to commemorate the milestone, named “May’n Road to 10th anniversary Japan & World Tour 2014 – 2015 [Dots And lines]” was created and May’n will be travelling to 47 prefectures throughout Japan, as well as overseas locations. This will be longest tour she has ever been on.
While she may seem like a carefree and cheerful young lady, watch her transform as she picks up the microphone. Commanding a wide range of singing styles from pop-rock, soul to R&B and grand ballad, May’n unleashes her high notes with absolute precision and ease, captivating fans throughout her entire magical performance.
Without further ado, let’s proceed to the interview segment with May’n.
What are the things you miss in Singapore?
Hmm, nothing particularly comes to mind.
Its the closest country to me (other than Japan), so it’s like my second home.
So I feel like I’m just returning home again this time.
You are one of the few artistes that have a nenordorid of your own. How does it feels to see yourself as one?
I myself am also a fan of Nendoroids. I didn’t expect to have the chance to make one myself, so I took alot of care in the design, costumes, accessories and the box, etc. to keep it all “May’n”-like.
Recently, you had a concert named Re: May’n Act. Could you tell us more about it?
This concert is all about re-enacting my first one man live, which was held in Japan with Macross’s Basara – Fukuyama Yoshiki-san from JAM Project as a guest member. However, I aimed to achieve a higher sense of excitement from the original concert back then.
The live concert CD will also be released next year, and I hope my fans in Singapore could check it out too.
We have seen increased activity on your social media network, from joining Weibo, to reopening your Twitter and opening an Instagram account recently. What do you think about going into all this social media platforms?
I originally had Ameblo for Japan in the beginning, and then China’s Weibo as well. However, I thought I wanted to exchange messages with more people around the world, so I started using Instagram and other SNS (Social Network Services) – which are popular overseas. So now, I’m hoping to be able to keep updating everything (on all SNSes) often, at the same pace I have done so far.
We can see that you have a new mascot with you. Could you intro us the Hippo?
This is my character called Hippo’n = Hippopotamus and May’n.
It’s a collaboration with the animation company Tatsunoko Productions and I intend to make more products with the character in the near future, so please look forward to it
You have performed in South East Asia many times. Do you see any changes in the fans reaction here?
It’s been 7 years since I first performed in Singapore and there are things I realized that have changed.
One thing I realized was that the a lot more of the audience have started to use light sticks, in the beginning, almost nobody had them, and then later on I realized that were some very long ones that I’ve never seen before even in Japan, but now I feel that everyone here is getting hyped up during the concert just like in Japan.
Whats the difference between performing at AFA and at your Dots & Lines world tour 2014 – 2015?
The main thing about going on a solo concert, is that with the longer duration, I get to choose more songs from my albums, singles and coupling songs to sing in my solo concerts in Japan. But for AFA, I think of what can better hype up the audience while picking the songs.
Having been scouted at a very young age and starting a career in the music industry, how has it impacted in your life?
I went for the audition in Junior High, and then went on to enroll into a entertainment/showbiz-related high school, where everyone around me was learning and aspiring to be in the entertainment industry, so it was a great experience.
For, sometime now we have seen photos of you with two bottles One appeared yellow the milky white. Can you share with us what is it?
Citric Acid (Vitamin C) and Protein! During the concerts, I move around a lot so I drink these – as I heard that they are good for the muscles and effective when taken after exercising.
If you can bring a Singapore food back to Japan. What would it be?
Prata! I always I say my favourite Singaporean food is Roti Prata! But, there isn’t any in Japan yet!
Are there any local delicacies you tried this time in Singapore?
Hmm, I don’t know. But I like Kway Teow! Its delicious.
Been in the industry for so many years what’s your inspiration?
I think its the concerts, and the songs that I want to sing with everyone at the concerts which I also want to share with everyone through my CDs. And when deciding on future songs, I get inspirations from my fans response at the concerts.
In the recent Dot’s & Lines tour in Taiwan,Shanghai and Guangzhou, you sang Jay Chou’s song “Snail” (蜗牛) in Chinese . Do you have any special guidance in learning the song?
I think there are many of my Singaporean fans who speak Chinese too, and I have been quite involved in the Chinese speaking community, so I’m putting more effort into studying Mandarin now.
Any special guidance in learning the song?
Any challenges in pronouncing the words?
I don’t go to a school to learn my Mandarin, so I can’t ask my teacher to teach me how to pronounce certain words. But for songs, I can listen to Jay Chou’s pronunciation directly, so I learnt it from just the music.
I have just completed watching M3 and I have to say the opening song Re:REMEMBER it really matches the story.
Could you share with us the other two songs in the album?
Katatsumuri is a cover song of “Snail” by Jay Chou. He’s a popular artiste in Asia, and I wanted to sing songs that would appeal to more and more people in Asia too, so I started by covering this Chinese song.
And I really love the lyrics – “walking and looking forward, one step at a time”, as it also fits my journey over the past 10 years, which was also one of the reasons I chose the song.
As for Tagatameni, this song was also used as an insert-song for M3, but was actually considered for the opening theme of the animation, as it reflects the main character – Akashi-kun’s feelings of why he has to fight.
You will be celebrating your 10th anniversary since your debut. How has your music evolved over the years?
In the many concerts I have sung at so far, I feel that the songs that I have always wanted to sing have never been fixated on a particular genre or anything. I sing pop, rock, cool and even cute songs – and I want to be an artiste who sings many types of songs.
My artiste name “May’n” comes from my real name: “Mei”, but I also chose it as I wanted the songs I sing to be the “main theme”, so I hope to keep looking for the kind of music that everyone can always be close to/familiar with.
Recently, you have broken off from the singing exclusively for anisongs. What expects of existing anisongs did you transfer into live-action series? Is there any noticeable difference in the music style for anisongs and live-action songs?
There isn’t much of a difference, really.
When there is a request to create a song for an already made series, I make it a point to accurately deliver the atmosphere and mood of the series in the song, whether it’s for a drama, movie or animation.
Continuing from the previous question about the trends in fan reactions during concerts earlier – do you feel surprised by the dance movements or chants of the fans, like if you didn’t expect them to know a particular chant, etc.? If there are any, please share them with us.
Back in 2008 during my first concert at AFA, there wasn’t any such calls or chants like “Oei! Oei!’ and even if there were a few cheers it was pretty much over the place, and even in America everything was different from Japan. I feel that this rhythm that the calls and chants have are unique to Japan, such as the loud calls for encores with claps. But recently, everything has changed to be the similar to that of Japan.
And other things that I was surprised by, was the words from my fans.
When I asked my fans about which of my songs they like, there were many fans who replied Phonic Nation, which was a song that I made with a message to everyone around the world that I also included in my album. When the song starts to play in the concert, everybody reacts to it and I feel touched because there are no differences from Japan, as my overseas fans recognize this song as well.
Since her overseas debut at Anime Festival Asia Singapore in 2008, May’n has returned to her second home on an annual basis, performing at every single Anime Festival Asia Singapore. So we couldn’t miss the chance of her penning down her wishes for Singapore, in conjunction with the celebrations for Singapore’s 50th anniversary.
Happy 50TH BIRTHDAY
That’s all we have for May’n, stay tune for more from Ani-Culture.net !
Photo Credits: QX