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  • Double is the pseudonym of the Japanese artist, Takako Hirasawa. She was born on 14 March 1975 in Niigata, Japan. When Hirasawa was a teenager, she wanted to become a hairdresser or a makeup artist. Initially, Double was a duo. The lineup included Takako and her sister Sachiko.

    The young woman’s music career started when her older sister Sachiko came back from a vacation to the USA and gave Takako a tape with Mary J. Blige’s songs. The sisters were inspired by Blige’s music video to the 1992 single “Real Life”. They decided to try their luck in the music world. The sisters debuted at a concert on the US airbase in Tokyo.

    In February 1998, the artists made their way into Oricon chart. The single “For Me” reached the 89th spot. The same year, Double presented three more singles, "Desire", "Shake", and "Bed". “Shake” was the most popular of them all, reaching the 21st spot on the national chart.

    Before the group managed to release the debut LP, Crystal, Sachiko died from a blood disease. The album came out in the summer of 1999 and came in second on the Oricon chart. The group’s overwhelming success inspired other Japanese R&B singers, such as Kay, Ai, and Namie Amuro.

    After Sachiko’s death, Takako took a short break. She came back to the world of music in 2000. Hirasawa kept the pseudonym, Double. The same year, she released a new single “U”. It climbed to the 29th spot of the Oricon chart. Later, the singer filmed a music video for the single, which as highly successful. At that time, many organizers tried to book Double for private events.

  • Soon, Hirasawa released another single “Angel”, which came in 13th on the charts. Then the singer presented an LP, Double, which later came out for the English-speaking audience. It debuted on the 30th spot of the charts.

    In 2002, Takako released a new LP, Vision. A year later, she presented, Wonderful. Both were financially successful and earned positive reviews from the critics.

    In 2004, Double made her long-time dream come true by recording a jazz album, Life is Beautiful. It was created with the assistance from producers of a famous Japanese band, M-Flo.

    To record the next album, Reflex, the Japanese singer joined the American hip-hop trio, De La Soul. Together, they recorded "Say I Gotta Believe". Then, the artist presented another collaboration single "We International".

    Throughout her career, Double has been demonstrating a unique image. She capitalized on her good looks and sexuality. The singer worked hard to create stylish album covers and unique music videos, which didn’t look like anything other Japanese artists created. Takaka explained the special approach by her respect of Madonna and her work.

    Double doesn’t usually appear on TV shows and tries hard to avoid reporters. The singer doesn’t perform live too often. In one of the interviews, she explained that the problem is her perfectionism. Takako believes that it’s possible to achieve perfection in the studio but not onstage. However, she does make exceptions.

    For the 10th anniversary of her career, Double released the compilation album, 10 Years Best We R&B. It came in second on the Japanese chart. In 2008, she presented a collaboration album, The Best Collaborations. Similar to the previous album, this one reached the second position on the charts and sold over 60,000 copies. It featured a new song “Black Diamond”, recorded with a famous hip-hop singer, Namie Amuro. The two singers performed the single during Double’s tour in Tokyo. The young women also sang at MTV Video Music Awards ceremony in Japan.

    In 2010, Double released another compilation album, Ballad Collection Mellow. The next year she recorded the 6th LP, Woman, which featured such songs as "Lips", "Count 3", "Tatoo", "Sunset", and "Slave of Love".

    The singer continues recording new hits and performing live.

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