Japanese title: 愛の種
Romaji title: ai no tane
English title: Seeds of Love
Members: Nakazawa, Iida, Abe, Ishiguro, Fukuda
Release date: 1997.11.03
Catalog nr: UR-001
Label: Uraneba Record
First press: no, but some singles are numbered, and if you went to the signing events you’d get autographs and different photocards.
«Ai no Tane» is Morning Musume‘s debut single, counted as an indies release, and labeled as an ASAYAN Project. The single contains the title track only, and no b-side or an instrumental (which is standard for Japanese single releases). There were made 50.000 copies of the single, which also are the total sales.
In 1997, an audition program called «Sharan Q Rock Vocalist Audition» were held in association with ASAYAN. ASAYAN was a tv show aiming at producing new music artists, and the band Sharan Q with their lead man Tsunku, were looking for a female vocalist to join their group.
The finale of the show was on September 7th, 1997. In the final episode the number of girls were down to 11. All girls were singing an original song, penned by Tsunku, called «GET.» Michiyo Heike would be the winner (all though she forgot the lyrics), making the other 10 the losers.
However, despite Nakazawa, Ishiguro, Abe, Iida and Fukuda failed to make the audition program, they were promised to make a major debut only after selling 50,000 copies of their original single, “Ai No Tane” («Seeds of Love») in just five days. The name of the group was decided as Morning Musume based on the image of “Breakfast filled with variety and volume, great value meal, easy to approach and familiar to everyone.”
In November, their road to major debut began at HMV Sinsaibashi branch in Osaka (selling 16,610 copies), continuing to having sales events in HMV Canal City branch as well as HMV Tenjin branch in Fukuoka (selling 9,004 copies). Sales event continued in Kirin Beer Garden in Sapporo (selling 14,853 copies). During this event, Kaori Iida was hospitalized because her contact lens broke and caused temporary blindness. She was able to come back before the fourth day of «Ai no Tane» distribution at Nagoya Baseball Stadium (selling 9,533 copies). After four days, the 50,000 sales mark was reached!!
01. 愛の種 (Ai no Tane; Seeds of Love)
愛の種 (Ai no Tane; Seeds of Love)
Lyrics: Kenzou Saeki | Music: Sakurai Tetsutarou | Arrangement: Sakurai Tetsutarou