DOUBLE‘s roots lie in the prefecture of Niigata, where TAKAKO and SACHIKO discovered their love for R&B music. The influence of their eldest sister, NORIKO, contributed to their initial discovery of music, with the trio spending most of their childhood singing together. Later in their childhood, NORIKO left the family home to study abroad in America, and upon her return, brought with her a vast collection of R&B CDs from artists such as Janet Jackson and Mary J. Blige.
In February 1998, DOUBLE made their major debut with the release of For me. The pair quickly followed up their debut with Desire, but failed to chart on the Oricon. In September, DOUBLE paired up with producer Kiyoshi “KC” Matsuo for the release of their third single, BED, which was initially released in LP format, though a CDS version was issued the following month. Over the months of October and November, the pair embarked on a club tour “DOUBLE Club Circuit ‘98.”
The following March signaled the release of DOUBLE‘s fourth single, which was their first true hit, peaking at number 21 on the Oricon. At the time of the single’s release, DOUBLE had embarked on their national club tour “SUPER SISTERS TOUR -Shake-,” which spanned over March and April. However, following a successful performance at Niigata on May 21st, tragedy struck the pair: SACHIKO passed away suddenly due to a subarachnoid hemorrhage.
On June 2nd, DOUBLE‘s first album, Crystal was released with great success, reaching second place on the Oricon and selling over 60,000 copies. In December, Crystal Planet (an extra album package featuring a CD and video) was released. Whilst the CD featured previously unreleased tracks, the VHS contained footage of the pair’s performances in their local Niigata nightclubs. However, following her sister’s death, TAKAKO had opted to take a break from the music business.
TAKAKO returned to the entertainment circuit in 2000, continuing to perform under the name DOUBLE as a tribute to her late sister. TAKAKO‘s first vocal performance appeared on BASE ON A TRUE STORY, an album released by hip-hop MC ZEEBRA, who had collaborated with the sisters on the song Shake.
In 2002, DOUBLE participated on GTS‘ album, POP+underground, with her vocals being featured on the track I Miss You. The following month saw the release of her first remix album and in June, her eighth single, Driving All Night/You Got To. Then, in August, DOUBLE coupled up with South Korean singer MC TASHA for the single DOUBLE TROUBLE. In December, DOUBLE was also featured as a guest on the Heartsdales single, Should Have What!?.
In August 2004, TAKAKO featured as a voice actor on the Playstation 2/XBox game “XIII~Daitouryou wo koroshita otoko~.” A few months later, DOUBLE was selected as one of the artists to feature on an upcoming tribute album for Inoue Yosui, on which she would cover the song Wine Red no kokoro.
2005 saw DOUBLE‘s name featured alongside other notable artists on various singles and compilation albums, including DJ MASTERKEY and BOY-KEN and Orquesta de La Luz.
In 2008, DOUBLE celebrated her 10th anniversary, holding a meet-and-greet session on January 18th in her hometown of Niigata. Mere weeks later brought the release of her best collaboration album, 10 YEARS BEST WE R&B, and it peaked at number 2 on the Oricon. A few months later on May 25th, DOUBLE released THE BEST COLLABORATIONS. This album featured the notable collaboration BLACK DIAMOND between DOUBLE and the reputed “Queen of Hip-Pop,” Namie Amuro.
For the first time in six years, DOUBLE returned to the stage for her national tour “DOUBLE BEST LIVE -We R&B-,” which was held in seven cities across Japan. For her performance final at Shinkiba STUDIO COAST, guest appearances from Namie Amuro, Ak’Sent (who also performed at the Osaka and Nagoya shows), Full Of Harmony, VERBAL, and ZEEBRA made the event even more memorable to her fans.
Official Website: http://www.artimage.co.jp/artists/double/index2.html