Unexpectedly, there was something else which caught my eyes, or rather my ears. It was not the theme song "IS IT YOU?" by hitomi but rather the insert song which was a soothing R&B number with vocals I had never heard before then. However, in the first few episodes of the drama, there was nothing in the credits which mentioned who the voices belonged to. After checking Wikipedia for the purpose of writing this post, it seems that there was a deliberate attempt at that time to conceal the names of the singers so as to build up interest among viewers about their true identities.
According to what's written on Wikipedia Japan, someone else was supposed to be responsible for the insert song for this drama. However, that singer had to withdraw from the project for some unknown reason. At that time, HIRO, the leader of EXILE, had planned to get ATSUSHI to join J Soul Brothers as their vocalist. It so happened that another thing happened leading to the plan falling through. Just then, HIRO also came to know about SHUN while he was looking for a vocalist. As FujiTV was in a hurry to find a replacement singer, they approached avex to produce the original song which was rewritten and recorded by ATSUSHI and SHUN who didn't know each other until the day of the recording. Being greenhorns at doing studio recordings, it took them almost one full day to finish the song's recording which was in English. Subsequently, when the song was aired during the broadcast, it attracted so much interest that another Japanese version was made and aired from episode 9 onwards. The single did rather well in the Oricon charts with a No.8 placing in its first week and became a long-running bestseller.
I didn't know about this history until I did the research so I'm kinda surprised that the song was a last-minute effort to fill in for the original singer who had to withdraw. Nonetheless, I was rather impressed with the vocals of ATSUSHI and SHUN then and I really liked how the song always came in at the right moment to match the mood of the story. As such, it was an unexpected discovery for me to have come across this song through the drama. Although I don't count myself as a EXILE fan and have not followed their career closely over the years, this song remains my No.1 favourite from the group even though SHUN is no longer in it.
For those who are interested in checking out the song, here is where you can find it.