With so many boy bands in Japan, some are barely noticeable while others stand out from the rest. Among these is a 19-member Japanese pop and R&B band which originated in the capital city of Tokyo. They are known for singing and dancing and, of course, performing their music on stage.
The band began with J Soul Brothers, a Japanese music group which was formed in 1999. They started with 4 performers and 1 vocalist and made their debut in 1999. Sasa, their vocalist, later left the group and they were then joined by two other vocalists, Shun and Atsushi. With these new members, they formed the band “Exile.” Shun left the group in 2006 to start a solo career and a performer named Akira joined the group. Shun was also replaced by Takahiro as a vocalist. The group’s leader is Hiro who used to be a member of a band named Zoo, a Japanese pop music band which was formed in 1989.
In 2009, the Second J Soul Brothers, also known as “Nidaime J Soul Brothers”, consisting of 7 members merged with the lineup at the time, forming a group of 14 members in all. In 2014, five members were added to the group forming now the popular 19-member band which people know today.
It is said that during their time as a band, they have so far sold more than 20 million records within the country alone. They started with an R&B music style which was later on influenced by pop music. Though their leader has already retired from performing with the group in 2013, he promised to continue on as the leader and producer.
Exile has undergone several departures and new generation members in the group since its formation. Among the 19 members, only 15 of them are currently active in the group.
Are you a fan of Exile and their interesting concept as a band?