Cinnamon of Minna no Kodomochan has been incredibly busy of late. Not only has she been conducting the in-store events and other duties associated with promoting her latest single, “The Final Blinkings”, but she has been personally illustrating each and every CD being sold in record stores around Tokyo. In between all of these activities, performing her birthday live, and preparing for the next round of the Artists’ League competition where Kodomochan are appearing as a referee’s choice, Cinnamon very graciously agreed to carve out some time to do an interview with us.
As much as I wanted to play it cool like the seasoned music blogger that I am, I have to admit that when Cinnamon agreed to our interview request, I got as excited as a little kid on Christmas. It has been almost five years to-the-day since Minna no Kodomochan dropped their debut MV on YouTube. The electro punk, doom metal drops and wry, emo-goth sensibilities of “I Wish I’d Be Dead When I Wake Up” made them an almost instant Homicidols favorite. We have followed their career with enthusiastic interest ever since. Five years, a dozen singles, an EP, two successful crowdfunding campaigns, one heartbreaking graduation, an album that charted on our 50 Greatest Albums list, and back-to-back Homicidols Corenament championships later, and we still can’t get enough of this unit.
We are thrilled to be given this opportunity to learn more about Cinnamon, how she and Kodomochan have been weathering the pandemic, and what she can share with us about the future of Everyone’s Children.
Before we dive into the interview, I would like to thank Teruyasu for assisting with the coordination of the interview, and Monsterpanda for the expert work translating all the questions, responses and other communications back and forth . This endeavor wouldn’t have been possible without either of their assistance.
Homicidols’ 20 Questions for Cinnamon
“To the people who are suffering from things alone, I want them to know that there are others who feel the same way.”
Homicidols: You joined Minna no Kodomochan when you had just become a teenager. Why did you want to be an idol?
Cinnamon: I was scouted out of the blue. It just kind of started.
Homicidols: Did you have any singing or dance experience before then?
Cinnamon: I didn’t have any experience. I didn’t even attend school, I just stayed cooped up in my home.
Homicidols: Before Minna no Kodomochan had original songs, you performed covers of Metallica songs. What was that like?
Cinnamon: I didn’t know who Metallica was, so I didn’t really know what I was doing, but the people who were running the show were happy.
Homicidols: How would you describe Minna no Kodomochan to someone who does not know anything about the unit.
Cinnamon: A band singing with a wall strapped to their back. A little dark.
Homicidols: Kodomochan’s songs are often dark and existential and include subjects like emotional anguish, nightmares and death. There are also sometimes elements of humor and playfulness. What message or feelings do you most hope your music conveys to your audience?
Cinnamon: To the people who are suffering from things alone, I want them to know that there are others who feel the same way. To the adults, I want to tell them that there are people who feel this way.
Homicidols: You wear a panel strapped to your back when you perform. Why?
Cinnamon: I am carrying the embodiment of the wall between people. I’m usually not good at interacting with others, so I’m expressing the wall between myself and others with that panel.
Homicidols: I believe the wall you currently wear is broken in half. Will you replace it soon?
Cinnamon: It’s been broken for two years now, so I doubt I’ll get it fixed.
Homicidols: Minna no Kodomochan won the Homicidols Corenament two years in a row. How did that feel?
Cinnamon: I was very happy. I was surprised to know that there are people outside of Japan who support me!
Homicidols: What is your favorite Minna no Kodomochan song and why?
Cinnamon: It’s “Shoujo A”! I like the melody and it’s fun to sing to.
Homicidols: Does Minna no Kodomochan always perform with a live backing band? Is it important for Minna no Kodomochan to perform with a live band instead of karaoke style?
Cinnamon: During COVID, we performed solo shows, but basically we perform as a band. All five of us, including the band members are Kodomochan. So without the band, it might not be Kodomochan.
Homicidols: For the new single, you personally illustrated 222 CDs (Editor: That number has increased considerably since we crafted the question). How long did that take? Did you think you would run out of ideas to draw?
Cinnamon: I could only draw about four pictures per hour, so it took a long time. I ended up drawing 575 pictures. Towards the end I had trouble coming up with new ideas, so I would go for a walk or watch random videos to get inspired.
— しなもん 👁 ∽ 👁 (@kodomochan_47) December 10, 2021
Homicidols: In your latest MV, “The Final Blinkings”, an avatar of Cinnamon violently beats up Cinnamon. What is something you sometimes want to beat yourself up about? What is something that you do very well?
Cinnamon: It’s all too common, I wish I was as strong as that avatar… I’m not good at anything.
Cinnamon: It’s quite difficult to write lyrics. I’m not good at communicating my thoughts to others to begin with, so I have to use my brain, which makes me hungry, so I eat, then I get sleepy and go to bed.
Homicidols: What is the best advice you have been given about being an idol? Who gave it to you?
Cinnamon: I can’t think of any. I haven’t heard any good advice from the management either.
Homicidols: How do you think the pandemic impacted the idol and music scene in Japan? How has it impacted Cinnamon and Minna no Kodomochan?
Cinnamon: It was hard for me not to be able to perform. The band members were not able to perform for a long time as well, so it was like Minna no Kodomochan was on hiatus.
Homicidols: Over the past year or so you have begun performing as a solo idol. What are your solo lives like? What kind of songs do you perform?
Cinnamon: It’s lonely because I didn’t have a band, but all the songs performed were Minna no Kodomochan’s songs. I wondered if there was anything I could do during COVID, so I decided to perform a solo show. I don’t have any plans to do a solo show in the future.
Homicidols: Do you also work at Ouchi café (Editor: formerly Minna no Kodomo Café)?
Cinnamon: I don’t work at Ouchi, but I’m there for Minna no Kodomochan events!
Homicidols: If you could collaborate with any other idol or musician in the world, who would it be?
Homicidols: Do you have any future plans or goals for Minna no Kodomochan that you can share with us?
Cinnamon: There are still very few people who know about Minna no Kodomochan, so I’d like to do my best to let as many people know about us as possible, but because of COVID, it’s hard to make any plans for the future.
Homicidols: Would you like to perform overseas someday? Where?
Cinnamon: I would go anywhere! I would do my best to go to all the countries!
Homicidols: If you had one message to give to your overseas fans, what would it be?
Cinnamon: Please wait for me! I’ll see you at a show!