Datte Datte Datte, NMB48’s newest single to be released on the 13th of May, has a music video and melody that is a breath of fresh air for the current NMB48 group. After the graduation of leader and perpetual center, Yamamoto Sayaka, over a year ago, NMB48 has had three singles, experimenting with different centers and subgroups for B-sides.
The sudden announcement of Yamamoto Ayaka and Umeyama Cocona as double centers for the single came as a pleasant surprise to fans; who were all expecting another Miru center. The song is lively and catchy, with the most superb music video NMB48 has released in the past couple of years. In the video, younger members Cocona and Ayaka are being directed by older members to create a great product. Below, 48Group West gives you eight members in NMB48 that you should know, and should keep an eye on for the future.
Kojima Karin (小嶋花梨) “Kojirin” (Team BII, 5th Generation)
An NMB48 member for four short years, Karin has yet to center a promotional song for the group, however she has continuously been selected for NMB48 Senbatsu for each release following the previous General Captain’s departure. Watch her Center the NMB48 fan favorite song, Zipper, from Team N’s 3rd Stage.
Karin has proven herself to be a strong performer time and time again, working very hard to show improved dance skills. Karin can most commonly be seen in NMB48’s sub-unit, DANCEABLE in the color Red. Watch their first music video, Yasashisa no Inazuma, released on NMB48’s 21st single and centered by Kato Yuuka (also covered in this article)!
In late 2018, Karin was handpicked by previous General Captain Yamamoto Sayaka to take over her role and lead the group. Many people saw this as an interesting choice, as Karin had not previously been seen in much promotional material before being named General Captain. It was revealed that Karin was an NMB48 fan long before joining the group, and showed a love for the group that was so strong, that (from Sayaka’s perspective) she was the one most suited to lead. Watch her take Sayaka’s place as center for their 18th Single, Yokubomono, in Danceable’s dance practice on their youtube channel below:
Most recently, Karin has chopped off her long locks and taken part in Danceable’s most recent practice video: Doshaburi no Seishun no Nakade, a B-side from NMB48’s 8th single. Watch her Center the song below! You will also be able to find her participating on the B-side, Be Happy, for Datte Datte Datte.
Yamamoto Ayaka (小嶋花梨) “Aayan” (Team BII, 5th Generation)
In her short time with the group, NMB48’s Yamamoto Ayaka has already centered 7 promotional songs in the group’s discography, three of these centers being double centers with the similarly named graduated leader, Yamamoto Sayaka. Being known as the Ace of her generation, Ayaka was also the first of her generation and fastest member promoted to the group from Kenkyuusei status. Watch her double center their song Doko ka de Kiss wo, released as a b-side to NMB48’s 17th Single.
When Yamamoto Ayaka first entered the scene as a kenkyuusei, her name had already created a huge buzz. When it was found that Ayaka was a great performer as well, she was immediately chosen to be in all subsequent NMB48 Senbatsu performances. Her presence in the group has grown exponentially in such a short time. Watch her Center the song Good Timing, released as a B-side to their 18th single, below:
Good Timing had a very positive reaction from fans, placing in Request Hour the following year. Watch their live performance from the event below.
The year 2019 solidified Ayaka as the Ace of her team, as she was repeatedly chosen as the center for all Team BII songs released from that year on. In fact, the song Update by Team BII, released as a b-side to NMB48’s 20th single was what many like to call the spiritual predecessor to AKB48’s later single, Sustainable. Watch the music video below!
Ayaka is also currently part of the newest NMB48 subgroup, Lapis Arch, along with fellow Datte Datte Datte co-center Umeyama Cocona and Jonishi Rei. They just recently had their first concert and will be releasing a b-side to the new single, Datte Datte Datte. Along with that B-side, Ayaka will be participating in a different b-side on the single, putting her all over the single with three songs participated in. Watch her center the Team BII song, Jugon wa Jugon from their 21st single below!
Yoshida Akari (吉田朱里) “Akarin” (Team N, 1st Generation)
A first generation member with 10 years of experience, Akari has recently solidified her place as a top member of 48Group. After not ranking in her first few elections, and then hovering around 60th place for a couple of years, Akari struck gold with her youtube channel (below), which was so well received that her rank shot up to 16th place (Senbatsu) in 2017. Akari has since become a style and makeup guru, many not even aware that she was in a girl group! Shop her apparel brand here, and her makeup brand here!
In the past couple of years, Akari has solidified her status as top member of the group. In AKB48’s most recent Single, Shitsuren, Arigatou, one member from each sister group was selected with the exception of NMB48, where Akari and Miru both had strong enough standing to enter into senbatsu. Watch her perform the same NMB48 classic as listed earlier in this article, Zipper:
Akari is one of the members to take total claim of this song. Although originally centered by Watanabe Miyuki, Akari has released the only music video available for the song on her Youtube Channel that you can watch by clicking here.
Watch her perform another fan favorite, Warukii, below. Many girls in 48Group have performed this classic and you can see a compilation here in our article, 8 48Group Members Who Performed Warukii.
Akari’s rise to the top was not gradual. During the year of 2017, Akari had one of the largest rises in rank from the previous year of all the 48Group girls, skipping from 77th to 16th place. At that time her youtube channel, which propelled her to stardom, was barely over a year old! Watch her perform Dakishimeraretara alongside 48Group megastars Yamamoto Sayaka and AKB48’s 1st Generation goddess Kojima Haruna that year:
Akari is also known to be 1/4th of the NMB48 subunit Queentet. They have released three songs, two music videos, one concert, and multiple lives since their 2017 debut. Watch her center their first song, Which One, below!
Below is a bonus video. Because why have two “Zipper” videos in the article when you can have three? Watch her perform the song Solo at Queentet’s concert in 2019 below.
With Yamamoto Sayaka’s graduation in 2018, Yamamoto Ayaka’s move to Team BII in 2019, and Ota Yuuri’s graduation later that same year, Team N has found itself without a Center. As of this moment, Akari is the likely choice. Only time will tell.
Umeyama Cocona (梅山恋和) “Cocona” (Team BII, 5th Generation)
Cocona is easily a very quickly rising newcomer on the scene. Only being promoted to the group in late 2017, she has already centered a b-side on AKB48’s 56th single in 2019. Having a very subdued personality onstage, she has gained the interest of many fans for being one of a kind. Watch her double center Monica, Yoake de with AKB48’s newest Center, Yamauchi Mizuki. To read more about Yamauchi Mizuki, see our article The Front Five Girls of AKB48’s Newest Single, Shitsuren, Arigatou.
If you were to search for Cocona online, you might see the phrase “557” posted everywhere. 557 is a Japanese play on words, as “5” is “go” and “7” is “nana”. Thus, Cocona.
Along with Team BII members Yamamoto Ayaka and Jonishi Rei, Cocona is one third of the newest NMB48 subunit, Lapis Arch. Watch her perform alongside them, singing Kokkyo no Nai Jidai, a song released as a b-side to AKB48’s 51st single.
Below, you’ll see Cocona and Yamamoto Ayaka (The new NMB48 Double Center duo) perform the song Haru ga Kuru Made, from Team A’s 4th Stage.
In the upcoming Datte Datte Datte single, Cocona will be Center on the A-side, as well as participating in two of the B-sides. Most recently, Cocona transformed into Coconoroid, releasing a surprise song called Happy Synthesizer. Watch the video of her dancing below!
Kato Yuuka (加藤夕夏) “Uuka” (Team BII, 3rd Generation)
In her eight years of being a member of NMB48, Yuuka has participated in numerous A-sides and B-sides alike, as well as quite a few AKB48 B-sides. She has been the center of three songs across the NMB48 discography. Watch Tomadotte Tameratte, a b-side from AKB48’s 49th single below!
Yuuka has since been a prolific theater girl of NMB48, being the first in the group to serve on all three teams. Watch her perform oNEW no Uwabaki, a song from Team N’s 3rd stage, below!
Yuuka is another of the 48Group members who competed on the infamous Produce48. She did not enjoy great success however, finishing in 71st place. Below, see her perform Peek-a-Boo by Red Velvet.
Known as one of the resident dancers of NMB48, Yuuka has always taken part in as many dance performances as she could. This dancing talent was very apparent right out of the gate, and on NMB48’s first album, she became the first center of Team BII. Watch her center a dance performance below!
Currently, you can find Yuuka in the NMB48 Subgroup, Danceable, wearing the color Green. She also posts solo dance practices on the NMB48 official youtube channel. Watch her center Namida no Hyomen Chyoryoku, a song from AKB48’s 6th album in the dance practice video below.
Shiroma Miru (白間美瑠) “Mirurun” (Team M, 1st Generation)
Shiroma Miru is arguably the most popular member of NMB48 today. In the moments leading up to Yamamoto Sayaka’s departure, it was already understood that Miru would take over as center for the group. There was no fanfare or surprise. She has been in the group for 10 years now, and participated and centered in many NMB48/AKB48 songs. Although the following song is not a fan-favorite, it is a personal favorite song of ours: Mayonaka no Tsuyogari.
Miru is currently the Center and Ace of Team M, centering almost all of their songs since their inception. Seeing Miru shuffled out of this group could be comparable to seeing AKB48’s Kashiwagi Yuki shuffled out of Team B (God forbid).
It’s easy to find Miru around the 48Group universe. If you search for an NMB48 song, most likely she will be in the front line. Watch another rather recent song of Team M’s, a b-side on NMB48’s 19th single, called True Purpose.
Miru is not just another 48Group member to compete on Produce48, she is one of the members that did extraordinarily well (given the circumstances surrounding the final lineup). Shiroma was one of the Japanese contestants that won over Korean hearts, finishing in 20th place, just a few ranks short of the cutoff. Watch her lively Rollin’Rollin’ performance below.
It’s difficult to talk about Shiroma Miru without mentioning the most popular NMB48 Single to come from one of her Centers. You really don’t have to be a 48Group fan to adore the composition, the wit, and aesthetics of the all-around-favorite, Warota People.
Miru is expected to participate in two b-sides along with the A-side of NMB48’s next single, Datte Datte Datte. One of the B-sides will be her second original solo song of the NMB48 discography. Let’s throwback to her first solo song, from NMB48’s 3rd album, called Boku wa Aisarete wa Inai.
Murase Sae (村瀬紗英) “Saepii” (Team N, 2nd Generation)
Murase Sae has spent a solid 9 years in the group, centering 4 b-sides across the discography (one of whom being her upcoming solo to NMB48’s next single, Datte Datte Datte). Recently, her fanbase has grown considerably due to multiple projects she has taken on in recent years. In 2017, Sae and graduated NMB48 frontgirl Yagura Fuuko formed a duo to compete in AKB48’s 2nd Janken Sub-Unit Tournament. Winning 2nd place, they were given the B-side to Fairy w!nk’s first (and only) single.
Sae is one of the more well known Japanese Produce48 contestants, finishing just behind Miru in 22nd place.
Due to her success in Produce48, Murase Sae later goes on to (along with Goto Moe (Grad)) Center Wakariyasukute Gomen, by Produce48 Senbatsu.
In recent years, Sae started her own fashion line, called Andgebee, which has enjoyed rather small success, being worn by multiple famous personalities. Visit their site and grab some merchandise by clicking here!
Along with others listed in this article, Murase Sae is a member of NMB48 Subunit, Queentet. Watch her in their most recent music video, Boku Dake no Kimi de Ite Hoshii, released on NMB48’s 21st single.
Below, Murase Sae performs Dear J, a rather classic and timeless AKB48 song, originally released as 1st Generation Itano Tomomi’s first single.
Shibuya Nagisa (渋谷凪咲) “Nagisa” (Team M, 4th Generation)
During her eight years in NMB48, Nagisa has had a good amount of success, being included in a subunit even before her promotion into a group, and then being the only 48Group member to be promoted into two teams and groups at once as a kennin member. She has participated in many promotional songs across the 48group library, and she has centered four of them. Watch her center Kimi to Deatte Boku wa Kawatta, a b-side from AKB48’s 34th single below.
Although Nagisa has not quite seen the success of more senior members in the group, she is frequently included in media and performances with them. She has landed herself in Future Girls four straight times, and hopefully the name “Future Girls” is a foreshadowing of her future dominance of the group. Watch her, along with Shiroma Miru and Watanabe Miyuki (Grad) perform. . . . Zipper.
Nagisa is yet another member of the NMB48 subunit, Queentet. Below, she, along with Murase Sae, perform Kuchi Utsushi no Chocolate, a song originally from Team B’s 4th Stage.
Below, she takes Center stage for the song Nagiichi, NMB48’s 4th single.
Nagisa has been praised by many for her MC skills. She seems to be very comfortable leading the conversation onstage, and tends to interview her fellow members often, as well. Watch her take us behind the scenes of posing for SNS pictures!
Who are your favorite NMB48 members? Tell us in the comments below!