JpopRocks interviews Konomi Suzuki



Okay, can you please give us a self-introduction?




鈴木このみです。テレビアニメ「ノーゲーム・ノーライフ」の主題歌「This game」やテレビアニメ「Re:ゼロから始める異世界生活」のオープニングテーマ「Redo」などいろいろなアニメソングを歌っています。

I’m Konomi Suzuki. I sing many different anime songs, such as “This game” for the anime “No game, No life”, and “Redo” for “Re: Zero-Starting Life in Another World”.



First question is, what inspired you to start singing?





I started learning singing when I was around 4 years old… so close to my first year of elementary school. Back then, I was a cry baby and was very shy around strangers. I started going to a school where they taught dancing and voice training to overcome this, and that was the start or my inspiration.



Wow!  You have done a lot of anime openings and endings. Is there any in particular that’s your favorite or favorite to perform?

すごい! オープニングとエンディングをたくさんされてますが、特にお気に入りの曲とか、パフォーマンスするのが好きな曲とかありますか?



悩む!全部大好きだから、この質問はものすごく悩むんですけど。特に印象に残っているものは、セカンドシングルの「さくら荘のペットな彼女」っていうアニメのエンディングテーマ「DAYS of DASH」がすごく自分の中では印象に残っています。その時は私も高校2年生の時で、アニメの登場人物も高校生だったんですよね。で、夢を追って、みんな挫折をしていたりとか、でも夢を追い続ける強さとか。そういうものを描いているアニメだったな、と思うので。ものすごく私も感情移入ができましたし。曲に対しても、アニメの世界も込めつつ、自分自身の等身大の想いを込めれた曲かなと思います。

Ah, that’s a difficult question! I love all of the songs, so it’s a very difficult question… but one that stands out the most might be my second single, “DAYS of DASH”,, which was the ending theme of “Sakuraso no pet na kanojo”. I was in my second year of high school when I sang this, and the characters in the anime were in high school as well. The characters were chasing after their dreams, sometimes failed at what they were doing, but they always had the strength to never give up on their dreams. I remember the anime being like that. I was able to emotionally invest myself in it because of that. When I sang the song, I thought about the world/ theme in the anime, but also included a lot of what I was feeling back then.



You had a lot of experiences performing at oversea anime events including Anime Expo. Are there any particular memorable or fun experiences you’ve had overseas? Where would you like to visit next?






Everything has been memorable for me… but, what I’m surprised by every time I go overseas is that the audience’s reaction is not that different from Japan’s. Just like Japan, they coordinate the colors for the sai-room. There are also people who prepare a cheering book that has phrases in it, and people say, “Yeah, let’s do it together!” and cheer together. It makes the live performance more unified and enjoyable. I’m amazed and fascinated every time I have a live performance. Also… something funny, or an oopsy-moment… Whenever I go overseas to perform, many fans come up to me and talk to me in Japanese telling me that they learned through watching anime. I’m really happy when they do that. So, I try to do my best to learn words and phrases from that country’s language so that I can at least introduce myself. But, when I went to the Philippines, I wanted to say “thank you”, but said “delicious”. I kept on saying “Delicious!” every time I finished singing a song, and it wasn’t until later when someone told me that I realized I had been making that mistake. So, I had that kind of little accident.

Where I want to visit next… Of course, I would love to visit America again, like LA. I also want to go to Asia again. But, if I were to visit somewhere I haven’t visited before, it would be Canada and Spain. The scenery in Canada is beautiful, so if I could have an outdoor performance, I think it would feel amazing! And Spain… people say it’s a country full of passion. So, I think if I could sing it that kind of environment, I could sing with more passion and fire within me.



Please come to LA.





I went to the beach when I visited LA. I could only go for an hour during my limited free time. But I thought, “Ahh I wish I had brought my bathing suit!!” The next time I visit, I’ll make sure to bring them with me, and enjoy a bit of vacation.



There’s a surfing event there.





Wow! I want to try surfing!



Do you have any pre-show rituals that you do before live?






I try to express 100% what I feel in the moment through my performance, so I don’t really think about how I should perform or MC. I actually try not to think about it. But, I get nervous easily… so, sometimes, I can’t sleep the night before or eat anything before the performance. To take that nervousness away from me, I ask the staff to hit my back really hard, and then I go on stage.

I have a lot of people hit my back.



That must hurt.

Do you have any plans in voice acting that you can share?





今のところは、テレビアニメ「LOST SONG」の主役のリンって役をやらせて頂いてて。あとは、PCゲームの「サマーポケッツ」も主題歌のアルカテイルを担当させて頂いているんですけど。それも、マスコットキャラクターのいなりっていうキツネの、「ぽん!」っていうしゃべる役をやらせて頂いているんですけど。

Right now, in the TV anime “Lost Song”, I play the main character, Rin. I also sing the main song ”Arukateiru” for a PC game called “Summer Pockets”. There’s a mascot fox character named Inari, and I also do that part. It only says “PON!” though.



Generally, what kind of role would you like to play?




テレビアニメ「LOST SONG」のリンっていう役をやった時に、一年間演技レッスンをやらせて頂いたんですけれども。その時に、リンは少女なんですけど、練習してる時だと、声が少年っぽいねって言われることが多くて。もうちょっとヒロイン感を出してくれって言われることが多かったので。逆に今度、もしやるのであれば、少年役とかやってみたいなって思います。自分自身も少年漫画は好きなので。

When I did the part for Rin in the TV anime, “Lost Song”, I took acting classes for a year. Rin is actually a young girl, but I was told that my voice is more like a young boy when I was practicing. I was often told to try to talk more like a heroine. So, if I have a chance in the future, I would love to try a part of a young boy. I like reading boy’s comics!


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Since you mention that, is there any character from any of the animes you sang songs for that you can relate to?





I usually start by trying to find something within the anime that I can relate to when I sing anime songs, so I don’t have any characters I can’t relate to… but, one of the characters I really understood was the main character from the TV anime, “Ange Vierge”, named Saya. She’s a girl who struggled with the idea of, “Who am I?” In the anime, there are a lot of characters who have talent, so she felt frustrated. There were scenes when she would struggle to understand who she is. At that time, I was also thinking about the same thing. There are so many fabulous singers who are my seniors, my colleagues, and newer singers too. I really thought about what my uniqueness was, and I also really thought about who I was. So, I was able to relate to Saya and cheered for her.



How do you feel when you hear your songs being played on the streets or anywhere?






I feel a bit embarrassed when I hear my songs, but I’m also very happy. I want to shake hands with whoever put that song on. I also feel embarrassed when I hear my own voice singing before or after the anime on TV. But, in the end, I always feel, “I’m really glad I was able to make a great song.” and I pat myself on my back… a little bit. I’m really happy that people are able to listen to my songs because some people decide to play it!



I heard “This game” in Akihabara earlier today.

さっき秋葉原でthis gameを聞きました。




Oh my gosh! Thank you, Akihabara!



If you could collaborate with another artist, who would it be and why?






I’ve said this from the moment I debuted, but I would love to collaborate with May’n. I liked manga and games, but I wasn’t interested in anime songs in the beginning. I actually wanted to become a JPOP singer, so I was learning music from my first year of elementary school to my second year of junior high school. And then when I was in my second year of junior high school, my friend introduced me to MACROSS frontier. I listened to a song by Ranka, who is a Sherly Nome. I started researching about May’n, and I found out that she’s an anime song singer! That was when I realized there’s a genre for anime songs. Her voice was my doorway to anime songs, and my dream to become an anime song singer. I would love to collaborate with the person who gave me that dream.

The songs I sang at the audition I debuted from were MACROSS Frontier songs. “Northern Cross” and “Diamond Crevasse”.



What do you like to do in your free time? Any specific hobbies or interests?





I like to go shopping. If I have time off, I immediately go shopping. I’m actually not really good at coordinating my clothes… but I like to go shopping to see different things at different stores. That’s my way to refresh myself. Recently, I’ve gotten into cooking, so I like to cook when I’m home. I go to the supermarket, cook, and relax at home.



Any specific dish that you like to make?





I like and make ginger pork the most. But, what I love to eat is deep-fried stuffed lotus root.



What is thing you wish to convey with your music?





I want to sing songs that make people’s souls fire up. As I’ve said before, I’m actually very shy, and I can be a cry baby at times… but in my heart, I always feel that I never want to lose (I’m competitive), and I have a strong feeling of wanting to fulfill my dreams. If someone is encouraged by listening to my songs and think, “Yes. I’m going to do my best from tomorrow because Konomi Suzuki is doing her best!”, I’ll be really happy.



I watched the movie, “No game, No life, Zero”, and cried a little bit.

私もNo game no life zeroの映画を観た時に、ちょっと泣いた。




The theme of the song in that movie was love. The theme itself was very deep, so it was a challenge trying to express all of this while recording the song. I read the original story many times and researched myself. Also, my motto is to always include my feelings with the world created within the anime. So, I thought about what love is to me a lot, and did the recording for the song.



Do you have a message to your fans around the world? Preferably in English




Thank you


Thank you very much. I’m looking forward to see you!





I’ve had the opportunity to sing in many different countries lately. Every time I somewhere, especially places I’ve never been to before, I think, “Do they know me?” But, I’m always happily surprised by how welcoming everyone is, and how the audience cheers when the song starts. I feel encouraged that my song is not only listened to by people in Japan, but other parts of the world. I’m very proud to be an anime song singer, and I feel so appreciative of people around the world. I will do my best every day so that I can sin more good songs. I hope we can enjoy our time together with a smile on our faces the next time we see each other. See you soon!

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Twitter: @ Suzuki_Konomin