The Hatsune Miku phenomenon

Who is Hatsune Miku? Well, she is not really “someone”. He is not a person or a team of people, he is not even an animated front of a real band, as in the case of Gorillaz. Hatsune Miku is a vocal software that many musicians used to create songs. Precisely adapts your voice to various requirements. Although it is only a vocal program, for the fans’ stuff, Hatsune is just as real and unique as any other pop star. It only changes the way you imagine music and create it.

Often mistakenly called the anime character and the robot, or reduced to being called (again incorrectly) a hologram – Hatsune Miku is a vocaloid. This means that it is a digital instrument: a voice synthesizer program that is always ready to sing a text using voice samples from the Japanese actress Saki Fujita, just like the piano keys reproduce the notes.

Hatsune Miku is just a voice and is very limited in itself. Fortunately, there is a bigger goal behind her. Hiroyuki Itoh, CEO of Crypton Future Media and a man behind the virtual singer describes Hatsune Miku and the phenomenon of Vocaloid as follows:

“This phenomenon is big, and Mikus fans count in millions. It’s strange, but this character, which is also a digital instrument, is at the center of an amazing digital music revolution, a movement that gives freedom to thousands of musicians and helps them create their music.”

Musical freedom

Vocaloid software uses the Yamaha speech synthesis engine. The first version of Hatsune was released in 2007. It was the third such product of the Japanese Crypton Future Media and eventually became part of the troupe of six separate Vocaloid vocalists made in Crypton technology. He sings mainly in Japanese, but he also has an English voice bank. As with other musical instruments, original music created using Hatsune Miku can be distributed and sold.

From musicians who want to experiment with vocals, to those who do not have the resources or the opportunity to hire a singer, it offers almost complete musical freedom. He does not care what genre you sing, he will never question the stylistic choices, he can work without interruption and you do not have to pay a salary.

The success of the Vocaloid software and the world created thanks to it, can be compared to the development of smartphones and application developers. Application stores and the popularity of smartphones allow anyone with a computer and some coding knowledge to write and publish applications. Hatsune Miku and all other Vocaloids provide the same opportunity to anyone with some musical talent. Recording from Miku changed life.

Going outside the music

Vocaloid’s work does not end with music. For example, as with popular songs, Vocaloid songs have accompanying movies, made at a glance using software known as MikuMikuDance or MMD. The name reflects functionality, because animated 3D Miku can be programmed to dance with the song. It’s fan-driven content that attracts crowds, all built around love for the character, what it represents, and art itself.

A voice that became a mega star

Hatsune Miku can and is just a voice, but without artists using the software, she would not say a word. While Miku helps ordinary people get music around the world, it’s also a real mega star. Many well-known brands use Miku to create amazing effects – Mitchie M has an amazing talent for perfect voice tuning – and has his own series of video games – Project Diva and Project Mirai. It also appeared in Toyota and Google Chrome ads.

Miko Expo will present Hatsune Miku – in the form of a “hologram” – singing some of her most popular songs. Many of these songs were written and produced by artists who started working in a similar way as Wisp X, Coralmines and thousands of other producers. This is proof that musicians who start recording in their own bedroom who use the Hatsune Miku phenomenon can find their way onto the big stage.

Regardless of the platform, most musicians ultimately want their music to be heard, regardless of whether it is on stage or online. The Boa revolution perfectly puts it: “Vocaloid has helped me reach a new audience with my music I did not know, and I’m happy that people have the chance to hear her. I’m glad I’m part of it.”

Vocaloid software opens a huge world of creative possibilities for anyone interested in music creation. Or, if you want to listen, you can browse hundreds of thousands of songs on YouTube and other channels or join up to 2.5 million other Miku fans on Facebook.