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aiko (born Aiko Yanai (柳井愛子) on November 22, 1975 in Suita, Osaka Prefecture, Japan) is a Japanese pop singer-songwriter. She studied popular music vocals at the Osaka College of Music, graduating in 1996.

aiko is known for her cheerful disposition. Her music, which is primarily love songs, reaches a wide audience all over East Asia and beyond. Oricon published the results of a survey with 20,000 subscribers' favourite singers, and aiko headed the list.

She started recording music in 1996, and in July 1998 she made her major debut with her song "Ashita". Since then, she has had a successful career with her songs being used in television commercials and TV dramas. This exposure has attracted her many listeners. After the release of "Hanabi" (her third single) aiko became recognised natiowide. At this point, she started promotional appearances on TV every time one of her works is released commercially. Her second album, "Sakura no Ki no Shita" sold over one million copies. aiko has become one of the major forces driving Japanese pop music.

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