Ever since the COVID-19 outbreak resulted in a global emphasis on staying home in an effort to lower the curve of infection content publishers of all kinds have been sharing entertainment for free on all manner of platforms. Japan, in particular, has seen a massive uptick in the availability of entertainment on digital platforms during this time, something that was previously very slow going as industries in Japan have been rather apprehensive about embracing digital distribution.
One such content distributor that only recently started making moves in the digital space is the record label, avex. Over the past year, we’ve seen them do surprising things like upload the entirety of Ayumi Hamasaki’s music video catalog to YouTube, or make a wealth of Eurobeat available when they added Initial D soundtracks to digital distribution platforms. Their YouTube activity is worth extra emphasis as previously the label would rarely upload full versions of videos to the platform as it’s standard practice to sell special edition releases of CDs with the music videos, or just sell them ala carte on iTunes in Japan.
Continuing with their trend of uploading legacy content to the online video platform, and also in a bid to promote staying at home, avex has started uploading videos from their range of early 2000s ParaPara videos, promoting them as a way to stay active while self-isolating. The first upload, a segment from their Gazen ParaPara series, went up at the end of April but the response was positive (with over 400,000 views) and as a result, the label has announced they will be uploading 100 videos as part of their “Stay Home & ParaPara” initiative with new uploads occurring daily. In fact, a number of them are already scheduled for premieres over the course of the next week.
ParaPara as a trend was at its peak in the early 2000s and had died off in the mainstream long ago, even still a very dedicated fanbase exists worldwide and nostalgia seems to be bringing back enthusiasts from its heyday. Events like the annual Agefarre party at Tokyo’s AgeHa nightclub still draw a crowd to their dedicated ParaPara stage, so who knows, maybe a revival is on the way? Regardless of how things turn out, you can enjoy the videos and learn routines from the comfort of your own home now at the official avex YouTube channel.