If you're starting a pop group in Japan, where giant rosters and virtual superstars are par for the course, how do you stand out? By tying yourself to something trendy -- and in 2018, that means cryptocurrency. Meet Kasotsuka Shojo (Virtual Currency Girls), a J-pop group where each of the eight girls represents one of the larger digital monetary formats. Yes, you're supposed to cheer for bitcoin or swoon over ethereum (what, no litecoin?). The group played its first concert on January 12th, and naturally you had to pay in cryptocurrency to be one of the few members of the general public to get in.
The group's first single, "The Moon and Virtual Currencies and Me," warns listeners about the perils of fraud and extols the virtues of good online security.
And yes, there's a reason for the exceptionally timely theme. Katsosuka Shojo is promoting the idea that cryptocurrency isn't a "tool of speculation," but rather a means of creating a "wonderful future." It helps that Japan is one of bitcoin's biggest markets, with legal recognition and one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges. There really is an audience for this, then.
The real question: how long will this last? If you think regular pop groups don't last long, imagine a band whose fate is intertwined with something as volatile as cryptocurrency. It could find a following... or it fizzle out the moment virtual cash becomes passé.