major - 已故 (1991 - 2007)
ZARD, despite the secrecy surrounding them, has established themselves as one of the most popular acts that Japan has ever produced. Perhaps this popularity can be attributed to the lack of publicity surrounding the group, whom, in their sixteen years have only ever held two national tours and performed seven times on various music programs. Perhaps, most astonishingly however, is the realization that ZARD was in fact greatly dependent on its creator, Izumi Sakai, for material. In the sixteen years that ZARD dominated the Oricon with every release, Izumi Sakai penned over one hundred and fifty individual lyrics for songs.

ZARD's popularity can be attributed to their lyrics and, of course, Izumi's vocals. A vast majority of her material was aimed at encouraging others and, with the aid of her soulful voice, the song Makenaide became known as the song of Japan's "lost decade". With the release of Heart ni hi wo tsukete, ZARD's last single was written to herself, in order to encourage her to overcome her illness.

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