Noteworthy

Goto Maki Announces Hiatus For 2012

gocchin2011

Goto Maki announces hiatus starting in 2012 – Tokyograph
Hello!SayuNii – Hello!SayuNii
Maki Goto to go on indefinite hiatus in January. Album, song prior. – aramatheydidnt
Goto Maki on a haitus @ 2012; A reason to live for yourself – Chuu! Sugoi! Idol
…And Gomaki’s Career Takes Another Odd Turn… – The Groove Music Life

Idol legend Goto Maki has announced that she will be taking a career hiatus in 2012, posting a handwritten letter on her website. Gocchin states that she has been thinking about her life and career since the death of her mother in January 2010, realized she has always been working for others, and wants go re-evaluate as she focuses on herself. She makes a distinction between her Gomaki idol self and her “normal” Goto Maki self, thanks those who have supported her singing career, and notes she still has a number of releases and live performances before the end of the year. This includes a-nation, an album, and a solo concert in December.

Tokograph has the basic details, while Hello! SayuNii is supportive of Gocchin’s choice. aramatheydidnt is also understanding of this break, despite the heartbreak it causes among fans. Chuu! Sugoi! Idol came to H!P fandom after Gocchin’s departure, but nevertheless wishes for the idol to be happy. CJ of TGML speculates on a good deal of possibilities, including the nature of Maki’s mother’s death and the future of her career.

Given her career arc and the various personal tribulations she’s endured (much of it family related, including some particularly boneheaded moves by brother Yuki), it’s sometimes difficult to recall just how huge a superstar Gocchin was in her teens – the center idol for the biggest song from the biggest idol group at the fin de millennium. Her time at Avex has apparently been very good to her creatively, but she was always a second-tier talent to the label. (And given her sales as a soloist in the H!P stable, I can’t completely blame them.)

However, now that she’s a grown woman, we may sometimes lose sight of all she’s had to sacrifice to lead The Life the way she did. Many would envy it and wish they had a chance to do the same, but a cost is exacted on a person – especially on someone who started during childhood – no matter what benefits accrue. It looks to me as if Gocchin is finally looking at the balance sheet of her career and her life and finally admits that something more is owed her.

If anything, this move makes me think of one of her labelmates, Amuro Namie. Amuro also suffered personal tragedy in her family, took a chance to regroup and redefine herself and her career, and is now in the midst of a major resurgence. Whether or not Gocchin can do the same is not yet clear, but there are certainly many rooting for her.