1998- Pertama kali terlihat wajah Ayu di sebuah kedai di S&M Arcade aku terus beli CD & minat
Foto yang diambil secara gerila
Nak beli souvenir pun beratur panjang
Official merchandise mahal2 belaka
The influence of Hamasaki's music, sometimes considered one of the major forces in shaping Japan's current music trends, has been attributed to her constantly changing image as well as her self-penned lyrics;
Hamasaki's musical style has changed over time: her music contains aspects of rock and R&B and spans styles including dance, metal, progressive rock, pop, and classical. She also uses different instruments and techniques including piano, orchestra, gospel choirs, guitars, traditional Japanese strings, music boxes, and even effects such as yells, claps, and scratching. She frequently employs others to compose; as she has explained, "I'm not a professional; I lack even basic knowledge about writing music." However, when writing "M", none of the melodies composed by her staff appealed to her, and she decided to compose herself. Thinking that this let her get closer to what she had in mind, Hamasaki continued, most notably in her album I am..., mostly her own work; furthermore, she took control of nearly every aspect of her artistry for the same reasons. Later on in her career, however, she began delegating many of the tasks she had previously handled, including composition, to her staff.
Hamasaki's lyrics, all her own,[fn 3] have resonated among her fans, who praise them for expressing "independence, rebellion, and conflict juxtaposed with [...] innocence" and for being "like the contents of [...] a diary" and "reflecting [their own] changing emotions". Because she has "trouble voicing her thoughts", Hamasaki uses her lyrics as an outlet; she "draws from her own experiences and emotions" and tries to put them "honestly into words". She has stated that honesty is essential to her lyrics, saying, "If I write when I'm low, it will be a dark song, but I don't care. I want to be honest with myself at all times." Because of this, she did not use English lyrics until her album Rainbow, as she had felt that she could best express herself in Japanese.[fn 3] As with her musical style, the themes of her lyrics have varied: although "loneliness and confusion" were frequent in her earlier albums, she has branched out to wider themes such as faith and peace; themes in her later albums included love and the struggles of women. Hamasaki draws inspiration for her lyrics from various sources. A story told to her by her friend about a saint named Mary (possibly the Virgin Mary) served as the basis for "M", while the September 11 attacks inspired "a song is born". In an interview, she explained that "in the beginning" she "was searching for [herself] in [her] music", adding,
My music was for me. I didn't have the mental room to be conscious of the listener; I wrote to save myself. I didn't understand what it was to write songs. But over time I began to see many things, my influence, the responsibilities that gave me.
Sedar tak sedar dah 10 tahun Ayumi berkecimpung di dalam industri muzik Jepun dan aku pula dah 10 tahun menyokong beliau. Jadi sebagai peminat setia aku meraikan ulang tahun ke 10 ini dengan menonton Konsert Jelajah Asia 2008 yang berlangsung di Hong Kong 21 September lepas, sehari selepas tanggal bersejarah Malaysia 20 September.
Konsert diadakan selama 2 hari, 20 dan 21 September di Asia-World Expo bersebelahan airport dan dikhabarkan tiket semua habis dijual. Harga tiket serendah RM130 hingga RM400 dan aku memilih yang termurah.
Sehingga sekarang aku masih tidak percaya fakta yang aku sudah menonton Ayumi secara live. Hampir setiap koleksi DVD live Ayumi aku miliki dan sentiasa dihadami. Oleh kerana aku kurang mendengar lagu2 dari dua album terkini beliau, hanya separuh lagu yang didendangkan aku familiar. Lagu kegemaran yang dinyanyikan ialah Surreal dan Hanabi, dan yang tidak dinyanyikan ialah Naturally, Real Me, Because of You, Duty, Heartplace dan We Wish. Namun lagu2 baru juga tidak kurang hebat, cuma tak pernah dengar kerana senarai lagu menunggu yang terlalu banyak.
Secara keseluruahan konsert yang berlangsung selama 2 jam 20 minit ini boleh ditakrif berjaya dari segi pemilihan lagu, respon audien, kostum grand & sikap Ayumi sendiri yang mengundang rasa gembira di kalangan peminatnya. Ayumi yang aku kagumi tidak pernah penat dan sentiasa bekerja walau sekarang beliau pekak sebelah. Cuma yang terkilan adalah sekuriti ketat yang membantutkan hasrat aku dan semua penonton untuk mencuri2 mengambil gambar dan video. Tapi aku akhirnya dapat mengambil foto arena setelah tamat konsert setelah sekuriti terlalai sedikit. Haha.
Tahniah Ayumi dan diharap jangan berundur dan semakin kering idea, tahniah juga kepada Utada Hikaru sebab aku minat beliau juga.