Japanese singer Yui eyes bigger foreign fan base

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HONG KONG (AP) - Popular Japanese singer-songwriter Yui is eyeing a larger foreign fan base as she goes on her first foreign publicity tour in Hong Kong.

The 24-year-old pop sensation, whose full name is Yui Yoshioka, arrived in the southern Chinese financial hub on Saturday to drum up support for her first full-fledged overseas concert in Hong Kong on June 26.

Yui, who was a street performer early in her career, sang in the Tsim Sha Tsui tourist district on Saturday and was scheduled to perform at a suburban mall later Sunday.

Yui told reporters that she was encouraged by her fan support in Hong Kong. Sony Music executives presented her with a guitar-shaped trophy at a news conference in honor of her strong sales in the city, which include two platinum albums and 750,000 song downloads.

“I have always received many messages from Hong Kong fans. I’ve always wanted to visit. So I was very happy to receive the invitation from the Hong Kong promoter,” she said through a translator.

Yui said she is working on a line of memorabilia for sale at the June concert, the proceeds of which will go toward victims of Japan’s recent earthquake and tsunami.

Yui debuted in 2004 and shot to fame after her appearance in the 2006 Japanese movie “Taiyo no Uta,” which means “Song of the Sun.” She also performed “Goodbye Days,” the hit song from the film’s soundtrack.

Her four album releases are “From Me to You,” “Can’t Buy My Love,” “I Loved Yesterday” and “Holidays in the Sun.”




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