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Kobayashi Azusa, 2019

Kobayashi Azusa, 2013

Kobayashi Azusa, 2011

Kobayashi Azusa, July 1999

Kobayashi Azusa (小林梓) is a Japanese singer, model, cosplayer and actress. She was a founding member of the Hello! Project group Country Musume but only for their first single, Futari no Hokkaido.

She left Country Musume after the death of fellow member Yanagihara Hiromi, saying that the pain of the loss was "too great". The official press release said that Kobayashi decided to leave the group due to psychological stress. She talks about Yanagihara's death on the anniversary each year.

Until 2008, she also went by the name Hayashi Karin (林華鈴), before starting using her real name.

In 2013, she made her comeback as a singer by releasing a mini-album, Distance.



Kobayashi Azusa started out working as a model at the age of 15, signed to Junes Acting and Modeling. She got her first jobs in 1994 and appeared in several gravure magazines and gravure commercials.


At the age of 21, she signed up for an audition held by Tsunku and Tanaka Yoshitake (Country Musume’s original producer), called Country Musume Audition (カントリー娘。オーディション). They wanted to create a sister group to Morning Musume, but instead of being the next door girls, they would be country girls with rural values. The audition process was aired on the television program ASAYAN. Nine girls went through voice and dance lessons at a farm in Hokkaido, and three girls ended up being chosen, Kobayashi being one of them. The group would be named Country Musume, and was made up by Kobayashi, Yanagihara Hiromi and Toda Rinne.

As the oldest member she became the leader of the group. A few days before the release of their first single, Yanagihara died in a car accident. The group still released their debut single, but Kobayashi withdrew from the group a month after its release.

In August, during Hello! Project '99 at Yokohama Arena, Toda Rinne performed as the only remaining member of the group. She read Kobayashi’s farewell letter, which said: “Dear Fans, I would like to sincerely thank you for supporting us till this day. Despite how short it has been, I still would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart. Three of us were supposed to start a new group with high hopes and dreams. However, my dearest and best friend, Hiromi, lost her life suddenly and that took heavy mental toll on me. I’d like to apologize to my fans as well as my staff for my weakness in times when I need to be stronger, and all the trouble this may have caused. And once again, thank you very much for your support. Sincerely, Azusa Kobayashi.

Much of Kobayashi's departure was marked by scandal, however. Shortly after she left Country Musume, a photobook was released featuring explicit nude images she took prior to joining the group. "again4" was released crediting the pseudonym Morita Hiromi (森田ひろみ), but was publicized as featuring a member of Country Musume. Fans speculated that Kobayashi's rushed departure from the group was at least partially due to the agency wanting to distance itself from the adult photobook's release. Other adult magazines posted images crediting Morita Hiromi, but it is unclear whether those were also older photos or if Kobayashi returned to modeling under that name.


In 2000, she changed her professional name to Hayashi Karin. She worked as a reporter, model and actress, and also appeared in dramas.

In 2007, she became active in the cosplay and gothloli communities. During this period, she simultaneously released two DVDs: "Rozen ~Blome Gloke~" and "Maid Quartet." She also worked as a presenter, and appeared frequently in the free gravure paper magazine ver2.5. Kobayashi also appeared at cosplayer activities and events in Taiwan.

In 2008, Kobayashi dropped the name Hayashi Karin and returned to using her real name for professional work.

In 2011, Kobayashi focused on music activities and modeling.


In 2013, she released her first mini-album, entitled Distance. She said in an interview: "Usually, I am not so great with carrying conversations and expressing my feelings, so I wrote the lyrics as if I was jotting down my inner thoughts and ideas on a notebook. […] Five years of my thoughts, feelings, and histories are neatly packed in this album."

Live concerts were held September 18 and September 27 at Nishikawa-guchi Hearts in Saitama Prefecture to promote the album. The same year she appeared in a music video for TADACy EYE(S).


In 2014, Kobayashi opened her new official site, which also stated she would be producing three idol groups: PalmSugar, AISHNG FAIRY and Mysterious Roses (the latter which she would be a member of herself). Mysterious Roses was a limited group, active for a short period of time.

In September, Kobayashi announced the release of her second mini-album Alexandrite, set for an October release.

In November, AISHING FAIRY disbanded. At some point Kobayashi also stopped being a poducer for PalmSugar.


In January, Kobayashi held the one-man live event "Respiration ~Hikari to Yami no Naka de~ (January 29, 2017) One-man Live" where her mini-album Blue 〜Hikari to Yami no Naka de〜 was sold in advance.

In February, Kobayashi released the forementioned mini-album in collaboration with visual kei artists MAYU and EMIRU (both Ex-LAREINE members ). MAYU composed and plays guitar on all songs. EMIRU plays bass and also works as recording engineer, manipulator and arranger. The album also features covers of LAREINE's "Darkness" and "Sakura" (both music and lyrics by MAYU). MAYU also appeared on Azusa's oneman live on January 29 as a guest playing the guitar.


In January, Kobayashi released the single Pink no Margaret on the same date as her "Sound of Destiny (January 28, 2018) ~One-man Live~". MAYU appeared as a guest at the event. Kobayashi announced she would temporarily stop (music) activities after this live event.[1].


In 2019, Kobayashi announced an audition searching for female singers to debut on her own music artist label [2]. The announcement was later removed, and nothing came of this audition.

On February 1, Kobayashi posted news of a live event she would be part of in March, called Live De Oto Motto Vol. 5 (LIVE DE 音Motto vol.5) [3]. She also announced the news of a movie she'd be starring in called Utatte Mita Koishite Mita (歌ってみた恋してみた) [4], set for release in the summer of 2019.[5] [6] On April 3, 2020, the official twitter page announced the movie was released through Yokohama Cinemaline on May 30 to June 5, 2020.[7]

From October 24 to October 28, 2019 Kobayashi starred in the stage play Shikei Shima (死刑島) at Ryougoku Air Studio in Tokyo.[8][9]


In January, Kobayashi announced on her official twitter that she would be one of four performers for a comprehensive entertainment show centered around magic. It was called "Tanoshii Za Ushinawareshi Mono (Last One)" (楽しい座・失われしモノ(ラストワン)) and featured Kobayashi, magician Hirata Lefty, wrestling entertainer Mitamega Kunihiko, and Mr. Y. Two performances were scheduled at the live music venue "Shichimenchou" in Shibuya on March 29, 2020.[10] On March 25, it was announced that the event was cancelled due to the coronavirus.[11] It would eventually be rescheduled to November 15 with slightly changed content and a musical performance in addition to the play.[12] It was streamed live on TwitCasting[13].

In August, Kobayashi wrote on her blog that she happened to meet Yanagihara Hiromi's parents in an unexpected place in July.[14] Yanagihara's death seem to have made a deep lasting impact on her as she writes about it in July every year.

On November 23, Kobayashi was an MC at PAY LOVE IDOL FES Vol. 3.[15]


On March 15, Kobayashi announced that her coupling track "Shiroi Ito" would be added to JOYSOUND karaoke machines with a new video, which went live on March 20th. [16]

On April 16, Kobayashi made a guest appearance at the radio show "Hoshino Satoshi no Nihonshu Variety" (ほしのさとしの日本酒バラエティ) on Kiryu FM.[17]

On November 24, Kobayashi appearead as a guest at Rainbow Town FM88.5 show "Neko Hiroshi Kiba RUN Radio with Cherry Yoshitake Tokidoki Yoshietsu Neo" with Neko Hiroshi, Cherry Yoshitake, and Yoshie Tsuneo. [18]


  • Birth Name: Kobayashi Azusa (小林梓)
  • Stage Names: Hayashi Karin (林華鈴), Morita Hiromi (森田ひろみ)
  • Nickname: Azu (あず)
  • Birthdate: January 30, 1977 (1977-01-30) (age 44)
  • Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan
  • Blood Type: AB
  • Height: 157 cm (5 ft 1.8 in)?
  • Western Zodiac: Aquarius.svg Aquarius
  • Eastern Zodiac: Dragon.png Dragon
  • Hello! Project Group:
  • Other groups:

  • Hobbies: Playing with animals, fantasies costume, art and doll collecting
  • Specialties: Dressmaking, milking, riding
  • Likes: dogs and cats (in general Pachi), Dolls, and Gothic Costumes
  • Favorite colors: Pink, white, red, black

  • Discography[]

    Mini Albums
    Other Albums

    Major Singles
    Event Singles

  • Sang the chorus for Nakano Kenji’s Ima ga Shiawase da to Tsutaetakute (「今が幸せだと伝えたくて」)[citation needed]
  • Sang Yujyoo no Tabi (「ユージョーの旅」), the opening song for Q-LOVE, with Furukawa Kuichi.[citation needed]

  • Up until 2013, Kobayashi hadn't released any music on any record label, but from 2008 she had uploaded several videos to her Youtube channel, as well as performing them from time to time at different events.

    • Meguri Mawaru Kisetsu no Naka (メグリ廻る季節の中)
    • Egao – Namida Dakishime (笑顔・涙抱きしめ )
    • Atarashii Kanjou wo Sodatete Yukou (新しい感情を育ててゆこう )
    • Anata to Issho ni… (あなたと一緒に・・・ )
    • Koharu Biyori (小春日和)
    • Mirror
    • Introduce
    • Giniro no Tsuki (銀色の月) Ver. 2,5 Opening Song (ver2.5 TVオープニング曲)
    • Gekai de Vanancy (下界でバカンス)
    • Itoshibito Yo (愛し人よ)
    • Hyakunen no Ketsumatsu (100年の結末)

    Discography Featured In[]



    • [2006.10-2006.12] LOVE Nakano 5-chome (LOVE中野5丁目) (MandarayTV)
    • [2007.01-2007.03] Roman Happy Happy Ookoku (浪漫ハピハピ王国) (MandarayTV)
    • Koisuru Paradise (恋するパラダイス) (nakano@ddress)
    • Sutakon (すたこん (新宿放送局)) (Shinjuku Housoukyoku)
    • [2007.10-2008.03] Rinshan☆Q-LOVE (りんしゃん☆Q-LOVE (あっ!とおどろく放送局)) (Aa! Todoroku Housoukyoku)
    • [2008.07-2008.10] ver2.5TV (ver2.5TV (あっ!とおどろく放送局)) (Aa! Todoroku Housoukyoku)
    • [2012.05-2012.07] ATS Suiyoubi (ATS水曜日 (Akiba TV)
    • [2012.10-2013.03] azu:remix (AkibaTV)
    • [2014.07] Tokyo Tower TV (DAIBA TV)
    • [2016.04] Kobayashi Azusa no Ambivalence na Kimochi (小林梓のアンビバレンスな気持ち) (Tokyo Borderless TV)

    Variety TV[]

    • Idol wo Sagase! (TV Tokyo)
    • Dosanko Wide 212 (どさんこワイド212)
    • Hito Roman (TV Asahi) (秘湯ロマン (テレビ朝日系))
    • Nou Miso no Gu (TV Tokyo) (のうみその具 (テレビ東京系))
    • Takeshi, Tokoro no WA Kaze ga Kita (TV Asahi) (たけし・所のWA風がきた! (テレビ朝日系))
    • Ado Macchiku Tengoku (TV Tokyo) (アド街ック天国 (テレビ東京系))
    • Omezame Wide 5:30 (Chuukyou TV) - Reporter
    • Super Morning (TV Asahi) (スーパーモーニング (テレビ朝日系))
    • [2014.02.24] Ariyoshi Zemi (Nippon TV) (有吉ゼミ (日本テレビ系))
    • [2014.09.22] Ima Aitai! Karei ni Dai Henshin Idol Before After (TV Asahi) (いま会いたい!華麗に大変身 アイドルビフォーアフター (テレビ朝日系)
    • [2016.12.25] Kuruma Arundesukedo...? (TV Tokyo) (車あるんですけど…? (テレビ東京系))


    • [1996] NTT Dokomo (Kansai-ban) (NTTドコモ (関西版))
    • Art Nature (アートネイチャー)
    • [1998-2000] Century 21 (センチュリー21)
    • [2006] K Genso Diet Shokuhin (Taiwan-ban) (K元素ダイエット食品 (台湾版)


    • [2005.04-2005.05] Yu Kemuri Wars ~Okami ni Narimasu~ (湯けむりウォーズ〜女将になります〜 (CBC, TBS))
    • Onna wa Zenryoku Shissou (女は全力疾走 (NHK))
    • O - to - na ni Shite ~I Miss You~ (TV Asahi) (オ・ト・ナにして〜I miss you〜) (テレビ朝日系))


    • Country Musume no Bokujouda Yori (STV Radio "Sunday Paradise mu") (カントリー娘。の牧場だより(STVラジオ「サンデーパラダイスmu」内))
    • Country Musume no Potato Jikan (FM JAGA) (カントリー娘。のポテトな時間 (FM JAGA))
    • [2007.01-2007.03] Hayashi Karin no At Home Night♪ (Katsushika FM) (林華鈴のアットホームナイト♪ (かつしかFM))
    • [2007] Orine Radio "Fuwafuwa Rinshan no Isshukan Nari" Corner (Internet Radio) (おりねらじお「ふわふわりんしゃんの一週間なり」コーナー (インターネットラジオ))
    • Mondabe (Internet Radio) (もんダベ (インターネットラジオ))


    • [2012] Kobayashi Azusa Bara Bara Jiken ~Ningyou no Hitomi ni Utsuru Shinjitsu~ (小林梓薔薇薔薇事件〜人形の瞳に映る真実〜)
    • [2013.11.03] Kobayashi Azusa Bara Bara Jiken Vol. 2 ~Mikaiketsujiken Sousa-chuu Hito no Kokoro ni Matou Shinjitsu~ (〜小林梓薔薇薔薇事件Vol.2 〜未解決事件捜査中・人の心に纏う真実〜)
    • [2014.01.31] Kisetsuhazure no Kasou Party ~Tengoku ka Jigoku ka Amai Shougeki Kara no Oshioki Time~ (季節はずれの仮装パーティ〜天国か地獄か甘い衝撃からのお仕置きタイム〜)
    • [2014.06.08] Kobayashi Ata -Azusa- Kasu Vol. 1 ~Seinaru Ai wo Yado Shite... Marionette-tachi ga Kanaderu Shinku no Uta~ (コバヤシアターアズサーカスVol.1〜聖なる愛を宿して…マリオネット達が奏でる深紅の詩〜)
    • [2014.10.04] Kobayashi Ata -Azusa- Kasu Vol. 2 ~Seinaru Tenshi ga Maioriru Yoru ni Michibikarete… Watashi to Anata no Himitsu no Jikan~ (コバヤシアターアズサーカスVol.2〜聖なる天使が舞い降りる夜に導かれて…私と貴方の秘密の時間〜)
    • [2015.01.13] Kagami no Kuni no Azusa ~Alexandrite ga Terasu Shinjitsu~ (January 31, 2015) One-man Live (鏡の国のアズサ〜アレキサンドライトが照らす真実〜(2015年1月31日)ワンマンLIVE) 
    • [2015.07.10] Kobayashi Ata -Azusa- Kasu Vol. 3 ~Seinaru Ame ga Furu Yoru ni... Utahime ga Michibiku Shiro to Kuro no Sekai~ (コバヤシアターアズサーカスVol.3〜聖なる雨が降る夜に…歌姫が導く白と黒の世界〜)
    • [2015.11.18] Toaru Kuroshoubi no Mokuroku ~Akuma Demo Anata wa Watashi no Mono~ Dai Ishhou (とある黒薔薇の目録〜あくまでも貴方は私のもの〜第1章)
    • [2016.01.30] Inner Heart ~Hajimari no Toki~ (January 30, 2016) One-man Live (Inner Heart〜はじまりのとき〜(2016年1月30日)ワンマンLIVE)
    • [2016.05.13] Mousou Prologue ~Mata Aitakute~ (May 13, 2016) Acoustic One-man Live (妄想プロローグ〜また会いたくて〜(2016年5月13日)アコーステックワンマンLIVE)
    • [2016.11.18] Kobayashi Ata -Azusa- Kasu Vol. 4 ~Seinaru Ame ga Hibiku Yoru ni… Futatabi Maioriru Futatsu no Shinku~ (コバヤシアターアズサーカスVol.4〜聖なる雨が響く夜に…再び舞い降りる二つの真紅〜)
    • [2017.01.29] Respiration ~Hikari to Yami no Naka de~ (January 29, 2017) One-man Live (Respiration〜光と闇のなかで〜(2017年1月29日)ワンマンLIVE)
    • [2018.01.28] Sound of Destiny (January 28, 2018) ~One-man Live~ (Sound of Destiny(2018年1月28日)ワンマンLIVE)
    • [2020



    • [2007.08] Rozen〜Blome Gloke〜
    • [2007.08] Maid Karutetto (メイドかるてっと)
    • [2020.09] Utatte Mita Koishite Mita (歌ってみた恋してみた)


    • [2002] Joshuu Kaori (女囚カオリ)
    • [2019.07.06] Utatte Mita Koishite Mita (歌ってみた恋してみた)

    Stage Plays[]

    • [2008] Kart Produce Vol. 5 "TEN COUNT ~Aki no Shou~ (Haiyuuza Gekijou) (KartプロデュースVol.5「TEN COUNT〜秋の章〜」(俳優座劇場))
    • [2009] Kart Produce Vol. 6 "Kiki Kaikai ~Mononoke-tachi no Yoru~" (SPACE107) (KartプロデュースVol.6「奇々怪々〜もののけ達の夜〜」(SPACE107))
    • [2015] Nanase Mina Gekidan "Dareka no Hoshizora" (Tsutsuji Hall) (七瀬美菜劇団「誰かの星空」(つつじホール))
    • [2016] Nanase Mina Gekidan "Ame to Yume no Ato ni" (Tsutsuji Hall) (七瀬美菜劇団「雨と夢のあとに」(つつじホール))
    • [2017] Nanase Mina Gekidan "Ochikobore Santa" (Asagaya Arch Space Plot) (七瀬美菜劇団「おちこぼれサンタ」(阿佐ヶ谷アーチスペースプロット))
    • [2017] Nanase Mina Gekidan "Zoku, Aa, Takinogawa Monogatari" (Tsutsuji Hall) (七瀬美菜劇団「続・嗚呼、滝野川物語」(つつじホール))
    • [2019] Shikei Shima (死刑島)
    • [2020] Tanoshii Za Ushinawareshi Mono (Last One) (楽しい座・失われしモノ(ラストワン))Cancelled


    • [1999.08.20] again④ (Kaiousha) (again④森田ひろみ (海王社)) - As Morita Hiromi
    • Bishoujo Shampoo (Odysseus) (美少女シャンプー (オデッセウス))
    • Kimura Kamera (Takeshobo) (キムラカメラ (竹書房))
    • [2015.08.15] SIZU&AZU Mini Shashinshuu (SIZU&AZUミニ写真集)
    • [2016.11.18] SIZU&AZU Mini Shashinshuu Dai 2-nan (SIZU&AZUミニ写真集第2弾)
    • [2017.10.19] FANTASY STORY Cosplay Shashinshuu (Amazon Kindle) (FANTASY STORYコスプレ写真集 (Amazon Kindle))
    • [2017.12.25] AZU STYLE Cosplay Shashinshuu (AZU STYLEコスプレ写真集(Amazon Kindle))


    • Top Speed (Sun Publishing) (トップスピード (サン出版))
    • Shuukan Young Jump (Shueisa (週刊ヤングジャンプ (集英社))
    • Shuukan Young Magazine (週刊ヤングマガジン (講談社))
    • Shuukan Young Sunday (Shogakukan) (週刊ヤングサンデー (小学館))
    • Kono Eiga ga Sugoi! (Takarajimasha) (この映画がすごい! (宝島社))
    • Sailor Mate DX (セーラーメイトDX)
    • Nikkangendai, Shitsureishimasu (日刊現代・失礼します)
    • Nikkangendai, Live House de Deatta Ii Onna (日刊現代・ライブハウスで出会ったいい女)
    • The Best Magazine (KK Best Sellers) (ザ・ベストマガジン (KKベストセラーズ))
    • Planavi (Free Paper Magazine) (Planavi (フリーペーパーマガジン))
    • ver2.5 (Free Paper Magazine) (ver2.5 (フリーペーパーマガジン))
    • Yokohama Keizai Shinbun (横浜経済新聞)
    • Flash
    • Sankei Sports (サンケイスポーツ)


    • She collects dolls.
    • She loves the brand Girl's Obsession COS & Alt.
    • She has the same last name as BEYOOOOONDS member Kobayashi Honoka, and PINK CRES. member Kobayashi Hikaru.
    • She usually collaborates with visual kei artists. Her backing band included Naoki (Kaggra), Kyoki (Secilia Luna), Setsuna (Metis Gretel), Mataro (from kozi's solo band) and others.

    See Also[]

    Honorary Titles[]

    Honorary Titles
    Preceded by
    Leader of Country Musume
    1999 – 1999
    Succeeded by
    Preceded by
    Oldest Member of Country Musume
    1999 – 1999
    Succeeded by


    1. [1]Official blog
    2. [2]
    3. [3]
    4. [4]
    5. [5]映画『歌ってみた恋してみた』 6日から上映しております(*'▽'*) 初日は満員御礼 お越しいただいた皆様ありがとうございました! 是非観てくださいね!
    6. [6]Kobayashi Azusa Official Twitter
    7. Officil Twitter
    8. [7]Official twitter (September 26, 2019)
    9. [8]Official Twitter (October 3, 2019)
    10. [https://twitter.com/kobayashiazusa/status/1217367867739365376
    11. [9]Shibuya Shichimenchou Official Facebook page
    12. Official Blog (September 24, 2020)[10]
    13. https://twitcasting.tv/7mentyo/shopcart/36682
    14. 大切な仲間 (in Japanese). Kobayashi Azasa Official Blog. 2020-08-12.
    15. https://paylove.org/project/15
    16. https://twitter.com/kobayashiazusa/status/1371422915112046593
    17. https://twitter.com/kobayashiazusa/status/1382972471247212546
    18. https://www.instagram.com/p/CWnHOo-PU3o/

    External Links[]