This cross-talk/interview from Wink Up magazine’s 2003 edition had me laughing so hard as Taguchi and Uchi rambled about a 1999 Jr trip to Hawaii... having conversations as:
Uchi: [KAT-TUN's] just kind of cool. Couldn’t I become a member of KAT-TUN? (lol) Oh I know! Let me study abroad as KAT-TUN’s “U” for a week (lol). And Ueda-kun can come to Kanjani8.
Taguchi: What do you think would happen if Ueda joined Kanjani8? [omg, I wonder myself]
…oh lol. There’s talk about the most random incidents and people in this. The Nakamaru bit with him being "no good" had me cracking up on the floor... I'm not familiar with Uchi but after reading... I think he's someone I would like to know... and Taguchi? He was quite funny in this cross-talk ^)^
Wink Up Special Jr TALK
Junnosuke Taguchi & Hiroki Uchi
The beloved East and West Talk Series continues with it’s third installment. This month we have Taguchi and Uchi who have known each other for a surprisingly long time!
Wow~ they got pretty wound up ♪
[Every time I look at this pic I LOL hehehehe..... Junno looks so cute here in an innocent way.... oh geez, I wish I had known them back in those days... but I'm happy I am now]
U(chi): It’s been a long time! Really long. We went to Hawaii for a Wink Up shoot and got along well.
T(aguchi): We’ve hung out in private longer than anyone else.
T: Nakamaru-kun was with us that time too, everyone who went to Hawaii then got along really well.
U: We did nothing but play games.
T: Right. That was how it was in the summer of 1999…. uwa, it’s already been 4 years~. Toshin was there, also Shigeaki!
U: Right right right! It’s so nostalgic to think about. Ah, there was a big incident back then!!
T: Ahahahaha! that's right~, there was! The “Taking a picture with a foreigner” incident (lol).
U: There was this foreigner who said “I’m a big star in America. I’m even in a lot of movies” and since we were kids we didn’t know better. We asked for handshakes and stuff, honestly thinking “This person is amazing” and taking pictures.
T: I saw you all getting excited so went to see what was going on and you were all getting drinks and stuff.
U: Oh yeah. We were told we could eat whatever we wanted by the hotel poolside, so we thought we’d be treated to hamburgers and juice, etc. I was like “All right, I want this!” asking for stuff. But Shimada-kun and Toshin said “That’s a lie, don’t be fooled”… and in the end they were right (lol).
T: As to be expected of senpai (lol)
U: Those two are smart! (Says whole heartedly)
T: But the rest of us were fooled (lol). And the staff got really really angry about that (lol). They’re normally kind people but they got seriously upset about that~
U: That was really scary. I seriously thought my days as a Jr were over. Even though I’d just started (lol). But I was still just in my first year of middle school. So I believed it!
T: Shigeaki was still in elementary school.
U: So what you’re saying is of course we’d be tricked.
T: But Nakamaru-kun was already in his first year of high school at that time. Even so he was totally fooled (lol). That’s funny in it’s own way though.
U: You wouldn’t think it, but that guy’s no good (lol).
T: It’s great that even now we’re still Jrs (lol). But you know, do you remember? That trip to Hawaii you bought toy handcuffs, then put them on my wrists and tickled me! That was really rough~!
U: I remember I remember! Even though we got along so well then after that we didn’t get in contact much.
T: That’s true~. There’s not that many chances for the East and West to get together for stuff. But getting to meet and talk about a variety of things with you today I don’t think you’ve changed at all. Yet on the other hand I’ve also had some new discoveries.
U: What do you mean “new discoveries”?
T: I’ve gotta call you “The attention-grabbing Hiro-kun, or just attention-grabbing for short” from now on (lol).
U: What’s up with that! That was just the staff were saying when they were goofing off! Something like capturing the public, I don’t think about that at all!
T: OK, what’s a small goal you have?
U: To get taller… I guess.
T: Uwa, that’s a small~ dream (lol). You sure you’re not short!?
U: I was surprised by how tall you are. When we went to Hawaii you weren’t this tall!
T: But you’re on the tall side of Kanjani aren’t you?
U: Yeah, well. Recently I’ve been creating a character for myself. Everyone in Kanjani is really a specific type of character (lol).
T: You’re all attention-grabbers.
U: ……I mean, everyone’s character really shows I guess? (lol) So lately Ryo-chan and I have been becoming the ‘cool’ characters. I’ve got a really thin/weak character.
T: Eh~~~~, I don’t believe it! (lol) I mean when you’re singing and show your shoulder (lol)!? That’s amazing!!
U: I couldn’t help that! The outfit suddenly slipped! That was a failure in my recent play! But KAT-TUN, you’re really like that… really cool you know.
T: We’ve got a ways to go~. What part are you thinking of?
U: You’re just kind of cool. Couldn’t I become a member of KAT-TUN? (lol) Oh I know! Let me study abroad as KAT-TUN’s “U” for a week (lol). And Ueda-kun can come to Kanjani8.
T: What do you think would happen if Ueda joined Kanjani8?
U: He’d be smothered. Everyone would pick on him. I’m sure that during play MC’s and stuff he would become the target. Right now it’s Ryo-chan and I, that’s really really hard (lol). They pick on Yasu too, but he’ll pick on you backstage (lol).
T: It does seem like if he entered Kanjani he’d be the MC target.
U: Yeah. (Serious) Maybe we shouldn’t trade. Next time they should let us two U’s have a talk (lol). I’ll start negotiations immediately. So, on the other hand, what do you think would happen if I joined KAT-TUN?
T: Well that, you’d take everything right. Because you’re “the attention-grabber” (lol).
U: Stop saying that, seriously!
T: Akanishi-kun says things like “KAT-TUN shows their coolness in atmosphere” (lol). So then if you joined, everyone would realize “Oh this is what real coolness is!!” (lol).
U: No, KAT-TUN is really cool. Meeting with you today after so long, you’ve gotten taller and I thought you were cool~. And when we were on “The Shonen Club” with you guys, Subaru-kun even said “KAT-TUN are cool naa”.
T: But we say it too, “Kanjani8 are cool”. Your appearances of course, but your songs are cool too!
U: Ah~ that’s true. But it’s more like we’re saved by our songs (lol). The new song we announced at the play we’re doing now is really cool~!
T: Ooh~ what style is it?
U: I dunno (quickly).
T: …. Haha, you responded too quickly (lol).
U: What KAT-TUN song do you recommend?
T: It’s gotta be “Haruka na Yakusoku”! (While fluttering his hands) It’s this, and moving your body around too! (lol)
U: (Moving his hand in the same way) This right, this! I wanted to try doing this (lol)!
T: But Kanjani, you guys have amazing talk. Plus your characters are strong.
U: No, there are those of us with weak characters too. Like Ohkura~ (lol). And, well I was saying it before too, but if you were in Kanjani8 you’d get used to it I think. Those who don’t would cry in 2 seconds (lol).
T: I guess. We did this in a concert but KAT-TUN have decided on animals for themselves. I’m a giraffe, Akanishi’s a leopard, Kamenashi’s a turtle, Tanaka’s a wolf, Ueda’s a donkey and Nakamaru is a koala. Uchi, what would you be?
U: Hmm, a pink toy poodle!
T: Uwa, that seems cute~. You’d definitely take all the good parts if you were in KAT-TUN! (lol)
U: I’m saying that’s not true! Well then, should we actually try me switching with Ueda for a bit (lol).
*** Uchi is no longer a part of Kanjani8
* The Shigeaki mentioned is ‘Shige’ from NEWS. Both him and Uchi joined JE in April 1999.
* Nakamaru [KAT-TUN] as we know him. Toshin Yoshikazu and Shimada Naoki is another Jr from those days.
* It basically sounds like they went to Hawaii for a photoshoot and fell for anything foreigners told them.... people lie especially to tourists, the naive foreigners (it happens). Also, at a lot of pool sides they’ll have food set out or something - some hotels are all inclusive where food is free, others are not so you'll have to pay for it.
* Taguchi’s nickname(?) for Uchi is 天下 which I normally read as descended from heaven but it also has the meaning of citizens/public. Because Uchi says 天下とろうなんて I went with “taking the public (tenka toru?)” as being what was being said as Uchi’s name. This matches with what Taguchi is later saying too about what would happen if Uchi joined KAT-TUN– he’d get all the attention from people. Anyway saying “attention grabber” sounded more natural then something like “public-taking” etc… o__o
source/ translation credit: lifeisgoodtrans.wordpress / daelite