19 January 1977 (age 40)
Cocco (real name: Tomoko Makishi, 真喜志智子, born January 19, 1977 in Naha, Okinawa, Japan) is a Ryukyuan J-Pop singer who debuted in 1996 with an EP titled "Cocko". A track from the EP, "Sing a Song ~No Music, No Life~", was used in an advertising campaign for Tower Records Japan.
In March 1997, she released her major label debut single "Kauntodaun" and a full-length album followed shortly after. It wasn't until 1998 when she scored a big hit in Japan with "Tsuyoku Hakanai Monotachi" ("The Strong and Ephemeral"), selling more than 250,000 copies of that single.
Cocco went on to record three more albums, "Kumuiuta" in 1998, "Rapunzel" in 2000, and "Sangurōzu" in 2001. Before the release of "Sangurōzu", Cocco announced she was retiring from the music business. Later that year, her label released a career retrospective, Best + Ura Best + Mihappyōkyokushū, which contained her singles, some b-sides and five unreleased tracks.
Her retirement didn't last too long. In 2002, she published her first art book, "Minami no Shima no Hoshi no Suna". In August 2003, she organized a benefit concert to raise awareness about cleaning up beaches in Okinawa. A DVD documentary titled "Heaven's Hell followed in December".
2004 saw her appearance on the Yutaka Ozaki cover album "BLUE" and the publication of her second book, "Minami no Shima no Koi no Uta", which was accompanied by a limited edition single, "Garnet / Celeste Blue". In 2005, Cocco collaborated with photographer/singer nanaco on CD/book combination titled "The Bird".
In late 2004, Cocco teamed up with Shigeru Kishida of the Japanese rock group Quruli (くるり) to re-record "Sing a Song" for Tower Records' 25th Anniversary in Japan. The sessions inspired the formation of Singer Songer, a band featuring Cocco, Kishida, Quruli's bassist Masashi Sato, Cornelius' support keyboardist Hirohisa Horie and former Feed's drummer Dai Taro.
Singer Songer made its live debut as a special guest at Quruli's year-end concert in December 2004, and in May 2005, the band released a single, "Shoka Rinrin". An album, "Barairo Pop" was released in June 2005. It contains a selection of country-flavored tracks that are much happier than Cocco's previous works.
On July 7, 2007, Cocco performed at the Japanese leg of Live Earth at the Makuhari Messe, Tokyo.
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