is a singer, writer, TV personality and fashion designer in Japan, most famous for her participation in pop
group Morning Musume
. She was born in Hokkaidō
, Japan on May 12, 1978.
Aya Ishiguro was a runner-up in a 1997 contest to find a new female rock idol. After the contest was over—with the winner being Michiyo Heike
—music producer, former rock musician, and contest judge Tsunku
decided to focus his attention on five runners-up, which included Ishiguro, Natsumi Abe
, Kaori Iida
, Asuka Fukuda
, and Yuko Nakazawa
Tsunku promised to take the quintet under his wing if they sold 50,000 copies of their CD "Ai no Tane
" (also known as Morning Musume's 0th single) within five days. They accomplished this task within four, and Tsunku upheld his end of the bargain.
During her years in Morning Musume, Ishiguro was given mostly harmony lines due to her low singing voice, which was used to support the voices of others. However, in late 1998 Tsunku decided to create Tanpopo
, a subgroup of Morning Musume (by then consisting of eight members) that included Ishiguro, Iida and 2nd generation member Mari Yaguchi
. Tanpopo's songs were slower and more mature than the majority of Morning Musume's, which allowed Ishiguro's voice to shine through.
After seven singles and three albums with Morning Musume (and four singles and one album with Tanpopo), Ishiguro left both groups and Hello! Project
in January 2000, shortly after the release of the single "Love...