A rare chance to get a relatively cheap Yobikumi-kun!

Anyone who’s been in a Japanese supermarket has likely heard the intoxicating cries of Yobikumi-kun. It’s a very simple melody that’s strangely haunting and really does get you jazzed up to do some shopping.

▼ Yeah!!! Let’s buy some stuff!

And although most people have likely heard this tune, fewer might be aware that it actually comes from a little speaker-shaped dude hiding among the shelves named Yobikumi-kun. He’s produced by Gunma Denki and has various other functions. As such, a Yobikumi-kun unit is pretty steep and upwards of 20,000 yen (US$150).

So, our reporter Masanuki Sunakoma was very intrigued to hear a pouch based on Yobikumi-kun that played the very same supermarket siren call went on sale on 2 February.

This is a part of the many novelty pouches sold by Takarajimasha and can be purchased online or at participating convenience store magazine sections. Masanuki’s jaw dropped slightly when he picked up his at a nearby store and was told it cost 3,168 yen ($24). Since it was really just a pouch he was expecting to pay about a third of that, but it was still way cheaper than a real Yobikumi-kun so he went ahead and got it anyway.

The box was heavily decorated with supermarket-like stickers, boasts of “Hooray! Batteries included!” and promises that if you push the button, the pouch will play “that sound.” Also, the musical notes printed on the package are accurate, except that it’s the bass clef and the first note is middle C, so feel free to knock out this tasty riff on your instrument of choice.

Masanuki eagerly unboxed his Yobikumi-kun pouch. It looked about the same size as a real one but was made of a soft material.

By the way, you might have noticed that the box said “BOOK” on it. These novelty pouches are always sold as “books” even though the main item clearly isn’t the book. It’s known as a mook which combines elements of a book and magazine and the “mook” classification allows the product to be displayed on shelves for a longer time than an ordinary magazine.

However, they usually sell out quickly, making shelf-life a moot point, but the ability to prominently display the pouches on magazine racks is a nice benefit. In this case, the Yobikumi-kun comes with a seven-page book illustrating the history of the speaker.

As for the pouch, it had a slim design that could hold essential makeup and accessories.

And the zipper had a tag that read “Irasshaimase”, or “Welcome” in typical Japanese shopkeep parlance. This is actually a scale replica of the real Yobikumi-kun’s face plates. There are about 60 types with different messages that can stick to the speaker’s face, which admittedly might come across as unsettling to some people.

But the real reason for getting this pouch was to play that music. Inside Yobikumi-kun’s butt is a compartment to hold the three LR44 button cells that power it and a main switch.

Once all that is set up, you just need to push the big black button.

“Popooo popopopo Popooo popopopo Popopopoooo popoooo♪”

It truly was music to our reporter’s ears and he was suddenly whisked away to the seafood section of a supermarket getting knocked aside by some old lady trying to get the last of the discounted salmon.

It was nice to be able to hear that melody any time he wanted. However, just hearing it once seemed to get it lodged into his head for the rest of the day. So if you too want this enchanting song rolling around your head all day every day, now’s the chance!

Photos ©SoraNews24
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