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About AKB48

AKB48 are an all-female Japanese theater troupe/musical unit created by producer Akimoto Yasushi. "AKB" is short for Akihabara, a Tokyo district where the group gives daily performances, and "48" references the number of members in this teen squad. Yasushi established AKB48 in 2005 by holding an audition attended by 8,000 participants, who were filtered down to 20 girls. The band debuted with the single "Sakura No Hanabiratachi" (2006), and by the third single, "Aitakatta" (2006), they were picked up by DefSTAR Records. AKB48 returned with the scandalous, "Seifuku Ga Jama Wo Suru" (2007), which rose to number seven, propelled by rumors that it referenced voluntary underage prostitution. AKB48 played it down, confirming that they were into social critique with, "Keibetsu Shiteita Aijou", which dealt with bullying. ~ Alexey Eremenko

December 8, 2005

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