Hajime Chitose is a Japanese singer who possesses a unique and recognizable style of singing, which is rooted in her background of traditional ‘island-song’ style singing of her hometown. At a young age she had won numerous folk-music awards for her singing and was even approached by a several record companies. However, she turned down these offers, opting instead to study to persue a career as a beautician.
An allergic reaction to the chemicals in the products caused her to drop-out of beautician school and seriously consider a musical career. She released two small albums with the independent label ATSUGUA in 2001. Her first major single through Epic Records was (Wadatsumi no Ki) in 2002. The single reached the #1 spot on the charts, and sold just under 850,000 units, making it the #3 best selling single of 2002 in Japan.
In early 2004 she announced her marriage and that she was expecting a child. She miscarried her first child, but soon conceived another. Her daughter was born on January 20, 2005. She also announced she would be taking time away from the music scene to focus on her family. However, in November of 2005, she returned with the single Kataritsugu Koto, an anti-war song. Her latest single, Ao no Requiem, is the theme song for the film Hatsukoi.
In November of 2006, Chitose recorded Rokka Ballad, which was used as the theme song for Hyoten , the remake of a popular drama of the same name.
In early 2007, Chitose went to Ireland to record two songs (Siuil A Run and Niji ga Umareru Kuni) with The Chieftains. From June 1, to June 12, Chitose performed live with The Chieftains during their 2007 Japan tour, ~The Chieftains Forever!~
Chitose is releasing her first single since Ao no Requiem on August 22, 2007. It is called Anata ga Koko ni Nite Hoshii / Miyori no Mori, and is Chitose’s first double a-side single. On February 6th, 2008, Chitose’s song Megumi no Amewas featured on image7, a compilation album. The song was used in the ‘P&G「h&s」’ shampoo commercials and also has a PV. There is no word yet as to if the song will be officially released as a single.
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