Aidol, the Idol Making Her Own Way in the Music Industry
Most people think that idols are all managed by agents who have every move planned out—but that’s not the case! Punk group Last In My Cult member, Aidol is breaking the mould and working hard to carve out her own career. The COMM caught up with Aidol, to chat about being an independent idol, fans, and fashion.
Please introduce yourself!
My name is Ayana Dainagon and I’m currently a member of the self-produced idol group, Last In My Cult!
What motivated you to become an idol? Are you going to be one for the rest of your life?
I think being on stage as an idol, giving love and expressing myself through singing and dancing is so much fun. I’m also motivated by other things, but that is my number one motivation. I’ve never really thought about the end of my idol career before. I’ll keep doing what I do as long as there are people who like me.
Who do you look up to in the idol industry?
Omomoko Sunrise from Band Ja Naimon! MAXX NAKAYOSHI. I love and respect her as an idol and as a person. I wasn’t really into idols, but I started listening to and watching the band after I got into her. I don’t think I would have become an idol if I hadn’t come across her. I love her and she has had a huge influence on me.
Can you tell us a bit about your idol group, Last In My Cult?
Last In My Cult is an idol group that debuted 3 February 2019. The music and concept for the group is mostly punk rock. We have been a self-produced group since June of this year, and the current band members are Shei SheiShei, Roku RokuRoku, and me (Ayana Dainagon). On 3 February of this year, we held our first anniversary performance at Shinjuku Loft, and it was a huge success.
Is it difficult to balance your daily life and your idol career?
I used to find it difficult. I’m currently working part-time and working as an idol, but I prefer to keep that from the fans. Actually, no, it’s more like it’s something that is happening behind-the-scenes, so there’s no need to let them know. I know exactly what kind of idol I want to be, and I don’t want to do anything that isn’t in sync with that.
I’m not very good at lying. So, when people ask what I did today, during my live stream, I feel like it’s better to give a vague answer like I was at my part-time job. It may not seem like a big deal, but it’s a momentous decision that has made me feel a lot better. I still want people to know about my day-to-day life even as I draw a line on how much I share.
What do you enjoy the most about being an idol?
I like the moment when you connect with the fans at a show. I go on stage with a heart full of love when I hear everyone’s sincere applause. The live shows are fun and energetic. I can share my time and feelings with everyone—and I love that! It’s changed a lot because of COVID-19. People can’t shout, but I really want to share my love so I’ll keep on thinking up new ways to do that.
How would you describe your personal style?
Sweet, kawaii, and Lolita! I’m short and not slim, so I feel like kawaii clothes look better on me. I actually really like kawaii clothes so it’s a perfect match. But, I want to try a variety of styles, so I change my make-up and style depending on my mood.
Your personal style is quite different from the punk uniform you wear when performing. Do you feel comfortable in both looks?
I wear a punk costume at shows, but I just add some frills and ribbons here and there and it feels like me. I like Harajuku fashion, especially Lolita, so I wear it in my day-to-day life, but I want to try Gothic Punk when I get the chance. I think both are very me.
In June 2020, Last In My Cult left the talent agency Marvelous Arc and became an independent group. What drove this decision?
We are passionate about giving our fans the best and this was our motivation for going it alone. It was an agonizing decision, but it’s better for us to be independent. There are a lot of challenges, but it has allowed us to do the things we want to do.
What are some of the challenges you face as a self-produced idol?
The three of us handle managerial things like booking shows, online shopping, production of goods, and we also do the live shows. We have to juggle a lot of plates and we are constantly planning so it’s pretty tough. There are also times when we disagree, and have trouble finding the best solution.
What does the future hold for Last In My Cult?
We’ve recently been able to do live shows, and we want to do more things that people can enjoy even in a pandemic. We also want to host events again. We want to reach out to new audiences, so we are recording new songs that we can use to promote ourselves around the world.
Any last words?
This is my first time being interviewed and it pushed me to get my thoughts together to answer each question. I’m happy that everyone will know a little bit more about me. Wish me, Ayana Dainagon, and Last In My Cult luck!
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Introduction and questions by Sophie, interview translated by Anna.
Images courtesy of Aidol.