Name: 保田圭 (Yasuda Kei)
Married Name: 小崎圭 (Kozaki Kei)
Nickname: ケメ子 (Kemeko)
Date of birth: December 6th, 1980
Place of birth: Chiba, Japan

Date of debut: May 3rd, 1998 (Member #7)
Graduated: March 31st, 2009

Official site | Official blog | Translation of official blog | Japanese Fan site

Kei Yasuda is a Japanese singer, song writer, actress and Tv-personality (talento).
She started her career as a member of the group Morning Musume in 1998, from which she graduated in 2003. She continued being a solo artist as a member of Hello!Project until the mass graduaton in 2009.

When Yasuda was in Morning Musume, she was made fun of because of her wink-style. 


History

(Large parts of the history has been taken from wikipedia.)

Kei Yasuda signed up for an audition called Morning Musume Addition Audition held by the TV show ASAYAN. They were helping Tsunku, a manager, to find three new members for his girl group Morning Musume.

Kei Yasuda was one of the three winners of the audition, the other two being Mari Yaguchi and Sayaka Ichii. They became part of the group in early 1998, and was first featured in the group’s 2ond single, «Summer Night Town».

In the spring of 2000, Tsunku decided to shuffle all the artists he managed under Hello! Project. He split all the artist into three groups, and Yasuda ended up in the 5nin group Kiiro5 with Natsumi Abe, RuRu Honda, Michiyo Heike and Ayaka Kimura. The whole purpose of the shuffling and three groups was to see which group would sell the most singles. Kiiro5 placed second, with total sales of 475.970 copies.

Yasuda also starred in her first movie this year, called «Morning Cop». She starred in more movies over the years: «Pinch Runner», «Tokkaekko» and «Koinu Dan no Monogatari.»

During her time in Morning Musume, she also guest starred on the radio show, Young Town Doyoubi, at several occasions.

Yasuda and Ichii sang a particularly catchy duet known as «Otome no Shinrigaku» («A Girl’s Psychology») on Morning Musume’s second album. In response to the popularity, Tsunku decided to group them together with fellow member Maki Goto to create the Morning Musume subgroup «Pucchimoni» in 2001.

She had also collaborated with other Morning Musume members in special projects during these early days. One of the more notable ones was when she co-wrote and co-sang with Natsumi Abe the song «Sanpo» for a radio contest.
Kei Yasuda also performed a few self written songs on a radio show. Despite more fans requests for the songs to be released, they never were. They are titled «Naccha wa nee» and «Dear My Friend», and were sung on air at «MBS Radio».
After graduating from Hello! Project in 2009, Yasuda has written several songs. The song «Kimi ni Todoke» was performed at fan club events, and the performance made it to a fan club dvd. It was also released as a digital download.

In 2001, Tsunku repeated the success of the shuffles from the previous year, and created three groups this year too, with the same purpose of seeing which group sold the most copies of their single. Yasuda was put in the group 10nin Matsuri. They released the single «Dancing! Natsu Matsuri» («Dancing! Summer Festival»). It sold 202.660 copies, placing the group third.

The shuffles became an annual thing (up until 2005), and 2002 was no exception. This year Yasuda was put in the group Odoru11. They released a single with a quirky sound, inspired by the traditional Japanese ondo style, accompanied by weird lyrics and a strange promotional video. Their single, «Shiawase Kyouryuu Ondo» (Happy Dinosaur Ondo), sold 72.070 copies, placing them third.

In 2002, Yasuda also released her first (and so far only) photobook, entitled 圭 (Kei).

Yasuda graduated from Morning Musume in 2003. During her good-bye concert, Yasuda sang a remixed rock version of «Never Forget», which was also Fukuda’s good-bye song. Additionally, as a special gift, Tsunku gave Yasuda a CD of her solo version of «As For One Day», her last single with Morning Musume. Her version of «Never Forget» is the b-side to the forementioned single.

Yasuda wrote a kaeuta (parody song) about this in 2010, where she complained about wanting to be center for at least one of Morning Musume’s singles, but she never got to be.

In December 2004, Tsunku created a mega shuffle unit. Everyone who was part of Hello! Project at the time was put in a group called Hello! Project All Stars. They released the single «ALL FOR ONE & ONE FOR ALL», which sold 61.440 copies.

For the 2005 shuffles, Tsunku decided to team Yasuda up with three other old school girls; Yuko Nakazawa, Atsuko Inaba and Kaori Iida, creating the shuffle group PuriPuri Pink. Their song, «Hitoshirezu Mune wo Kanaderu Yoru no Aki», would be a slow ballad enka styled. The song was released on the maxi single «Onna, Kanashii, Otona / Inshouha Renoir no You ni / Hitoshirezu Mune wo Kanaderu Yoru no Aki», which went on to sell 34.587 copies.

After graduating from Morning Musume and Hello! Project, Yasuda pursued an acting career in theater. She has appeared in several plays and doramas, and is from time to time a guest at talk shows as a talento.

In 2010 she became part of the group Dorimusu (Dream Morning Musume), who released an album and a single before going on hiatus in 2012.

In 2013, she got married, and in December of the same year, Hello! Project held a concert called Hello! Project Countdown 2013 ~Hello & Good Bye~ where Yasuda was one of the acts performing on stage along with several other graduated members. 

Yasuda still works as a stage actress, talento and photographer.