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Tomiko Van (伴 都 美 子, Ban Tomiko ?, January 9, 1978) is a Japanese singer originally from Kumamoto Prefecture.
She began her career as a vocalist of the band Do As Infinity in 1999. But after the separation of the band in 2005, the singer began her solo career.
Beginnings in Do As Infinity
After finishing high school, Ban decided to leave his family to look for a better future in the capital of Tokyo, and there he began to go to university. The girl was found by Avex producers who were looking for a young woman with a good voice to be part of a new band, an exclusive project by the young Dai Nagao composer of a new band called Do As Infinity. Along with Ryo Owatari and Nagao, Tomiko debuted in Do As Infinity with the first single “Tangerine Dream”. Gradually Van was acquiring skills to write their own songs, and already in recent years with his band began to write some of the songs.
Already within his band he was given some opportunity to work alone. In the year 2001 he recorded a song under the production of Tetsuya Komuro with the song titled “Again” for the song + nation charity compilation album. In 2003 he released a Trance music single together with Cyber X entitled “Drive me nuts”. His first artistic works not related to music were curiously like seiyū, when participating with his bandmate Ryo lending his voices for one of InuYasha’s films; he has not done more work dubbing animations since then. As an actress, she originally debuted in the musical “Bibou no Aozora” dedicated to the revolutionary Che Guevara in 2005, where apart from singing she also performed some of the songs of Do As Infinity solo.
Debut as a soloist
Shortly after the official separation of Do As Infinity with its last album of great successes on September 29 of the year 2005, the news was announced that Tomiko Van would continue a career as a solo singer. A few days later her own official website was opened in Avex, preparing the release of her first studio album for March 29, 2006, absolutely ignorant and expectant about whether the artist will achieve the success she once achieved with her band, but always counting on the support of his fans since the days with the group.
His first solo songs released were two versions. The first a version of the classic Cinderella, “A Dream Is What Your Heart Makes”, and later the version of “TRUTH ’94” of the band TRF, which was included in one of their singles. The themes were completely different to the songs previously recorded by Ban, and it was expected that the musical style of the artist would change notably in her next release this time alone. Contrary to what is normally expected within the industry, Tomiko’s debut album was first released and later promotional singles. The album titled “FAREWELL”, released at the end of March 2006, did not have any promotional single released previously to help make it known to the public, and only two promotional videos were made as the only support for television. The album, mainly composed of jazz melodies and ballads, became a moderate success, debuting in its first week inside the ten best-selling albums of Japan to the interior of the Oricon charts finally selling more than thirty thousand units.
Their first single, titled “Flower”, was released a few months after the first album was released. The theme this time more oriented to pop rock similar to his previous works with Do As Infinity, managed to draw attention to finally debut in the tenth place on the lists of Oricon and sell more than seventeen thousand copies. His next works launched in 2006, “Senko” -the more rock-oriented theme than the previous one- and “Yumeji” -first single ballad-, get to be among the Top 15 in their first weeks on sale, with moderate success. Since October of this year Tomiko also started working as a radio announcer for the first time, conducting her own program called Ashita no Banko, within the project Radio Traingle of the station JFN, where she participates with Ami Suzuki and mink.
At the beginning of 2007 Van debuted as an actress in the originally American musical adapted to Japan called Brooklyn, which since the month of February premiered to the public. This is considered his acting debut, since it was the first important performance. Van declared that she began to project her career as an actress in a more serious way, but without abandoning her career as a singer; It hopes to continue with its two artistic facets both at the same time, giving them the same importance.
Almost a year after debuting as a soloist, the covers album Voice ~ cover you with love ~ was released in March 2007, where several songs that were successful in their country were covered by Tomiko, among which was included also a topic in English. The album was very well criticized, and kept the singer occupied for some time in television appearances and various public places, but despite the good reviews I do not achieve very large sales.
Shortly after this Tomiko began to prepare her film debut as an actress, in the film titled “Heat Island”, where other Avex singers like Naoya Urata and Chiako Ito also participate. The film, released in October, showed Tomiko playing the waitress in a coffee shop who is involved in the mess of a millionaire fraud.
In what remained of 2007, no other work by the artist was released, apart from the fact that a new song, “manacles”, was chosen to be the opening theme of the anime Reideen. Later an edited version of the song was included in the soundtrack of this animated series.
In March 2008, VOICE 2 ~ cover lovers rock ~ was released, the continuation of the first covers album, but this time with songs that were originally performed exclusively by male artists.
In July, Tomiko’s new single, “Tokyo Biyori”, was released, which included the first song composed by herself, “message”.
In December 2008 the second original album by Tomiko will be released, which will be called “Van”.
In the encore of a concert that took place on September 29, 2012 at the Shibuya AX, Tomiko announced that she had married in mid-September. According to the sources, Van’s husband is not famous and is 4 years younger than her. She made the news known to the public as follows: “I want to let my fans know about my marriage, first of all, who have always supported me, he is kind, reliable and always supports me with an open mind. Let us understand and support each other, I would like to spend my life with him, I would be very happy for you to watch over us “.
On December 10, 2013, Tomiko announced her first pregnancy on the official website of the band: “From the bottom of my heart, I am happy that a new member of the family is coming in. Every day, I am surprised that the mysterious and small life that develops within me, I am healthy both in mind and in body, I will give my best in these end of the year concerts. “
On June 13, 2014, Tomiko announced the birth of her son to her fans, (who weighed 3.5kg): “Both my son and I are healthy, the delivery date was delayed, but there were no major problems. He was born healthy in the presence of my husband, and my heart is filled with joy of being able to have had our long-awaited son.I am making my first report to those who have supported me and to those who were waiting for this news, with gratitude. “
More Facts about Tomiko Van
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