Sitting Down with Melissa (SHEawase)

Melissa Shows
メリサショス
Leader

SHEawase (SHEあわせ ) is a net idol group founded by Melissa Shows and Kristy Valdez back in October of 2006. They had began as a cosplay group called, “Happy!Project.” Along the way, they decided to change their name. The name name SHEawase came from the Japanese word for Happiness, “Shiawase” or “幸せ.” Also from the play of words, the SHE from the English pronoun for girls and ‘awase,’ which is also Japanese for ‘Together’ or ‘Joinings.’

The members are Melissa Shows, Tara Muchmore and Morgan Davis. Kristy Valdez graduated early April of this year. Later, she was replaced by Maxine Ortner.

This is not your typical net idol group. It isn’t because of the professional touch in their music videos or their beautifully tailored costumes. Though admittedly, they do help. I mean, you only need to look at them to see they put a lot of thought into their designs. It is difficult not to appreciate that.


Performing at the Neko2 Music Festival
at A-kon 2013 with SHEあわせ.
I was first introduced to this group through their first music video in youtube called, Muju-Ryoku Boy Ranhansha Girl! (in Japanese, 無重力ボーイ 乱反射ガール). It was released on September 14, 2012. Nicely done editing, beautiful backdrop and well-sung song. Though still rough around the edges, it was a beautiful debut.

This group boasts of hard work and determination, but also love for this profession. The love I only understood only upon my first meeting with the group’s leader, Melissa.

There is absolutely no reason to dislike the group’s quirky leader, Melissa Shows. With her beautiful eyes and the energetic smile during performance, she is a joy to watch because she looks like she was having so much fun.

After a lot of trials along the way in the form of work, final exams and sudden appointments, I finally scored an interview with two of the members of the group, Melissa Shows and Tara Muchmore and both of them looked beautiful in the white costumes from their debut music video.

Inside the Studio of SHEawase:
Goals and Setlists
Despite the fact that the interview wasn’t exactly smooth-sailing due to technical problems, I enjoyed it. The two girls were comfortable to talk to and easy to listen to.

These two were room mates and I suspect from their interactions — partners-in-crime. While I was
setting up, I enjoyed watching them banter, poke and tease each other. Not unlike their interactions in their web show, “SheEatsWhat?!

Melissa is one of the founding members of the group and as leader, she has a big responsibility on her shoulders of directing the group towards their dreams.

So, get to know SHEawase’s Melissa Shows:


Aidolizings: Who is ‘Melissa’ outside SHEawase?
Melissa: I’m pretty much the same. I play the ‘princess’ character, I guess in SHEawase and outside as well. I have lived in a castle in Germany, so I was born a princess!
(From L to R: Morgan, Kristy, Melissa and Tara)

A:  If you were a Super Idol, what is your idol super power such as, Modeling, acting, dancing, singing?
M: I think — charisma because it is something that can’t be taught. It’s either you have it or you don’t. I also think that charisma can carry people a lot. Even if you aren’t the best singer or best dancer, but you’re very good with people — people tend to keep her.


A: What is the best part about being a member of the group?
M:  The people … I think that if even if we aren’t in SHEawase anymore, we’d still remain good friends. They’ve become such a big part of my life that I can’t imagine what I’d be without them.

A: Well, even if you are best friends you must still have your differences as well, right?
M: Yes!
Tara and Melissa

A: I wanted to ask this — who is your rival in the group?
M: I think my rival is — Tara. 

A: Why? That is a surprise. You two have very different images.
M: All the things Tara is good at are all things I want to get better at. Tara is very good with facial expressions … and dancing. She can pick up details in dancing really well.

A: How would you rate yourself performance-wise from 1-10?
M: 8. I still think I need to improve. I don’t think I am bad, but I am confident in myself.
CD cover of their debut single,
Muju-Ryoku Boy Ranhansha Girl!

A: Do you have a hard time singing in Japanese?
M: No. It’s actually easier for me to sing in Japanese than to sing in English. I think it’s because I’ve been singing in Japanese for so long that singing in English doesn’t feel natural anymore …

A: If you could be anyone in SHEawase, who would you be?
M: (Pointing to Tara) This person right here. Because she is the much better dancer … oh! — and everyone loves Tara’s red hair! One time, I dyed my hair a kind of red because I wanted to. But it ended up looking like it was purple.  We had a photoshoot during that time, that is why I have a photo set with purple hair. Kinda like Risako (Risako Sugaya from Berryz Koubou)

A: Risako is one of my favorites! So I wouldn’t mind!
M: Well, she can pull off the crazy hair though! I don’t think I can! So, I like my natural hair.
Screenshot from Muju-Ryoku Boy Ranhansha Girl!
(L to R) Tara, Melissa, Kristy and Morgan

A: I’ve asked this to almost every idol group I’ve interviewed. You might have received criticisms for your performance from people who think what you do is strange?
M: A lot more of people in the United States are more into J-Rock than J-pop. However, I feel like people are becoming more receptive to it more now than it has been in the past.

(L to R) Tara, Morgan and Melissa
M: Last question. What’s your last message to your fans?
A: I want to thank the fans who have been with us from the very beginning. All of the new fans too, of course! I am really happy that they all stuck by us. We are still learning a lot of things and are still a long way from being really professional. We love making music and making people happy. We’ll keep putting on great shows and music that they can all enjoy.

Links:


SHEあわせ Website: http://sheawase.com/
SHEあわせ Facebook Account: https://www.facebook.com/SHEawase
SHEあわせ Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/SHEawaseOfficial
SHEあわせ Twitter Account: https://twitter.com/SheAwase

(Or) Address:
SHEawase
PO Box 950452
Oklahoma City, OK
73195

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