We interrupt this program with an H!P-mergency post: Tsunku has been diagnosed with cancer.
Now, at this point, the initial shock has fully left us and the sobering reality has set in.
When the news hit, I literally said out loud (and on Skype, with some “OMG WTF NO!” added), “…Get well soon, man. I hope.” My initial feelings can be summed up in the following words (typo included):
Tsunku’s impact on music is a lot to me. Cancer is not a pretty thing to deal with and it’s a personal thing to me. (I lost the only grandmother I knew personally to lung cancer that metstasized.)
This touched me personally as I’ve lost two people to various cancers, my grandma being one of them, as mentioned above. (My strong conscious choice to live life as a non-smoker was made the moment she died – a week after my eighth birthday.) The other was a friend of mine who was nice and supportive of me, but I made the mistake of virtually becoming an Internet recluse for a few years… the timespan of which he left his mortal coil, leaving me with eternal regret. (At least he knows the goings on in my heart now. The horrific thing about it is that I don’t even know what cancer he died from, adding to my anxiety.)
Getting back to H!P and Tsunku, there’s fortunate good news (and some unfortunate bad news) to go along with this revelation! The good news is that it was caught early (and we know why Tsunku was having vocal trouble, with his voice getting worse as the sands fall in the hourglass). The bad news is that it has come out that Tsunku is taking a hiatus from the music business to focus on treatment – and there may be a chance that his voice will never be the same again. At least one person has thought about the implications this could have for H!P and UFA in general. (I also had just realized that this could have implications on TNX (if that’s still a thing) and possibly even other projects of his.) We destroy ourselves for the things we love, indeed.
A few weeks ago, a funny question popped up in the 2chan forums: Would you still be a H!P wota if Tsunku quit as their producer?
A few days ago, hockey fans suffered a similar health scare after Dallas Star Rich Peverley collapsed on the bench. The incident resulted in the calling off and postponement of the rest of the game. A great outpouring of support then followed, along with reflection on part of NHL GMs. In fact, one teammate was so shaken after the event that he too went into the hospital. It has sparked such a reaction and such a discussion that it even became a topic for investigative journalism series Outside the Lines the very next day.
While Peverley is now in stable condition, he is out for the season. As we know, so is the Great and Powerful Tsunku. How will the team function without him and this will certainly test the resolve of UFA, the resilience of H!P, and the loyalty of its fans. One thing is sure: Peverley is cheering on his team from afar and I bet you that Tsunku is doing the same.
I’ll put this question out again, in a different form: Would you still be a H!P wota if Tsunku wasn’t their producer? (Strangely enough, this was how I first read the question before I went back to it for this post.)
In other shocking news, we’ll have new recruits!
We’ll now return to our regularly scheduled program…