ZYX (ジックス, pronounced Zicks) was a short-lived Japanese pop group made up of five Hello! Project Kids led by Yaguchi Mari, a second generation member of Morning Musume. Yaguchi acted as a mentor to the Hello! Project Kids, showing them the ropes of being a performing member of Hello! Project.
ZYX was important in that it was the first unit that Hello! Project Kids officially joined, the second being Aa! formed in 2003, the third being Berryz Koubou in 2004, and the fourth being ℃-ute in 2005. As Shimizu Saki and Tsugunaga Momoko were selected to become members of Berryz Koubou in 2004, the activity of ZYX ended.
In 2009, the unit was revived as ZYX-α (ジックスアルファ; pronounced Zicks Alpha), with Tsugunaga Momoko and Umeda Erika being the only remaining original members. The revived unit eventually became inactive in 2011.
- Yaguchi Mari (矢口真里; Leader)
- Umeda Erika (梅田えりか)
- Shimizu Saki (清水佐紀)
- Yajima Maimi (矢島舞美)
- Tsugunaga Momoko (嗣永桃子)
- Murakami Megumi (村上愛)
- Niigaki Risa (新垣里沙)
- Umeda Erika (梅田えりか) (Graduated October 2009)
- Tsugunaga Momoko (嗣永桃子)
- Tokunaga Chinami (徳永千奈美)
- Sudo Maasa (須藤茉麻)
- Kusumi Koharu (久住小春) (Graduated December 2009)
- Wada Ayaka (和田彩花)
- Ogawa Saki (小川紗季)
ZYX was formed in July 2003, comprised of Hello! Project Kids members Umeda Erika, Shimizu Saki, Yajima Maimi, Tsugunaga Momoko, and Murakami Megumi, all led by Morning Musume member Yaguchi Mari who left Minimoni earlier in March.
In January 2004, a new Hello! Project group named Berryz Koubou was announced. The group was formed by eight Hello! Project Kids members, including Shimizu Saki and Tsugunaga Momoko. As a result, ZYX became inactive.
In 2006, the original Hello! Project Kids members of ZYX, who had then become part of Berryz Koubou and ℃-ute, reunited to perform "Shiroi TOKYO" at the Hello! Project 2006 Winter ~Zeninshuu GO!~. This was without Yaguchi Mari, who had resigned from Morning Musume in April 2005 and took a break from singing in concerts, which she had presumable left the unit.
In 2009, several dormant units such as Tanpopo, Minimoni, Petitmoni, Aa!, v-u-den, and also ZYX were revived. ZYX was renamed ZYX-α, and the revived unit was formed by original ZYX members Tsugunaga Momoko and Umeda Erika, Morning Musume members Niigaki Risa and Kusumi Koharu, Berryz Koubou members Tokunaga Chinami and Sudo Maasa, and S/mileage members Wada Ayaka and Ogawa Saki.
In the summer, ZYX-α released their first and only original song titled "Mirai Yosouzu II" in Chanpuru ① ~Happy Marriage Song Cover Shuu~. They made their debut at the Hello! Project 2009 SUMMER Kakumei Gannen ~Hello! Chanpuru~ performing "Iku ZYX! FLY HIGH."
ZYX-α performed in both the Hello! Project 2011 WINTER ~Kangei Shinsen Matsuri~ A gana Live and the Hello! Project 2011 WINTER ~Kangei Shinsen Matsuri~ B kkuri Live. They also performed in the Hello! Project 2010 SUMMER ~Fankora!~.
ZYX-α performed Taiyou to Ciscomoon's "Marui Taiyou -winter ver.-" during the Hello! Project 2011 WINTER ~Kangei Shinsen Matsuri~ A gana Live.
Niigaki Risa made a guest appearance in the Hello! Project Tanjou 15 Shuunen Kinen Live 2013 Fuyu ~Viva!~ and reunited with the four remaining members of ZYX-α to perform "Shiroi TOKYO".
- [2003.12.17] Petit Best 4 (#6 Iku ZYX! FLY HIGH)
- [2008.12.10] Hello! Project Special Unit Mega Best (#4 Iku ZYX! FLY HIGH)
- [2009.07.15] Chanpuru ① ~Happy Marriage Song Cover Shuu~ (#9 Mirai Yosouzu II) (ZYX-α)
- [2014.01.01] Hello! Project no Zenkyoku kara Atsumechaimashita! Vol. 2 (ハロー!プロジェクトの全曲から集めちゃいました! Vol.2 吉田豪編) (#9 Shiroi TOKYO)
- [2020.01.08] Petit Best 20 2020 (Disc 2 #11 Iku ZYX! FLY HIGH)
- There were at least two instances in which ZYX had a performance of "Iku ZYX! FLY HIGH" scheduled and Murakami Megumi could not attend due to schedule conflicts, in which case Sugaya Risako filled in for her - the first was a live performance unrelated to Hello! Project and the second was during Hello! Project 2003 Natsu ~Yossha! Bikkuri Summer!!~
- The name "ZYX" is a kind of acronym using a somewhat intricate play in notation. "Z" and "Y" are taken from the phrase "Zettai Yume o Bai ni." (絶対、夢を倍に, We hope that you will definitely accomplish your dreams double in size.) "Bai ni", meaning "[to accomplish] double in size", is represented not as "B" but as a multiplication mark "×" which was then identified with letter "X" in its formal resemblance. Also, it is strongly conscious that the letters ZYX are the last letters of the English alphabet in reverse order. In Hello! Project, this inverted order naming is followed by the groups W created in 2004, v-u-den in 2005, THE Possible in 2006 and SI☆NA in 2008. This line-up of groups continues the reverse alphabetical naming (ZYX-W-VU-T-S).
- Umeda Erika and Tsugunaga Momoko are the only members to be in both the original ZYX and ZYX-α.