Credits

I would like to give credit where credit is due. Videos are from YouTube and other sources such as NicoNico while Oricon rankings and other information are translated from the Japanese Wikipedia unless noted.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Linda Yamamoto -- Nerai Uchi (狙いうち)



Linda Yamamoto(山本リンダ)....one-of-a-kind force of nature. There probably has never been nor will there ever be a personage like her. It was from this song, "Nerai Uchi"(Sharpshoot), that I labeled the singer the Japanese Charo...and no, I'm not referring to that cute little bilingual dog on NHK Educational. I'll explain my Charo later in the profile.

Anyways, "Nerai Uchi"is another Yamamoto classic in which whenever I saw her perform it on Japanese TV, she could potentially out-hustle even the backup dancers. The aidoru singers of that day could probably only just stare and gawk at this whirling tower of power (her height was a pretty tall 168 cm). And then there was the famous line, "Ooh, la, la, ooh, la, la" which has stuck as her catchphrase since the release of the song in February 1973. I can just imagine that even in this day and age, the song still gets picked time and again at a karaoke box just to get everyone up and crazy.


"Nerai Uchi" was written by master lyricist Yu Aku(阿久悠)and composed by Shunichi Tokura(都倉俊一). The meaning in the title was not lost; a number of baseball teams, including that of Aku's alma mater in Tokyo, have used it as a cheering-up song. Surprisingly, considering its fame over the decades, it peaked only as high as No. 14 after its initial release. Still, Yamamoto was brought onto the 1973 Kohaku Utagassen, and then once again in 1991, after "Nerai Uchi" experienced a resurgence in popularity after it had been used in an episode of the popular Sunday-night anime, "Chibi Maruko-chan" since the show was set in the 1970s. Thanks to that song and her other huge hit, "Dounimo Tomaranai"(どうにもとまらない....already profiled), Yamamoto is still shaking her still fine bon-bons some 40 years later.


Ahhh....yes, Charo. The famous Spanish guitarist/comedienne was another force of nature who always brought her brand of "cuchi-cuchi" onto various American shows in the late 60s and 70s, and was a frequent figure on my television back when I was a kid. I couldn't quite focus on her since she was moving around the stage like a nuclear ion. Case in point, you can take a look at the above video.

2 comments:

  1. Thanks J-Canuck for this interesting entry on 山本リンダ. I had a big crush on her as a kid after seeing her in the original 仮面ライダー series where she portrayed マリ one of the ライダーガールズ who occasionally assisted 藤岡弘's hero character 本郷猛/仮面ライダー1号 (my other 70s crush was for 小牧りさ who portrayed ペギー松山/モモレンジャー in the Super Sentai series 秘密戦隊ゴレンジャー). I always thought 山本リンダ was her real name but it turns out it's a stage name (her real name is 山本あつ子)."Linda" was a pet name that her American father gave her when she was little. I actually preferred 山本リンダ the "actress"" as opposed to the "singer". Another series she starred in was the obscure プレイガール detective series sequel ザ・スーパーガール in which she starred alongside another American/Japanese ハーフ model/actress ジャネット八田. I've been searching for copies of that series for the longest time ever since catching the OP title sequence on a Toei Drama OP special on VHS. Almost forgot, another famous ハーフ actress that was in the 仮面ライダー series was former 80s Pro-Wrestler idol ミミ萩原 (she's half French/Swiss/Japanese). ミミ萩原 interestingly also starred in the プレイガール sequel series プレイガールQ alongside yet another ハーフ actress/model buxom キャシー中島, whose originally from Maui, Hawaii. At 61 山本リンダ still look absolutely stunning.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi, JTM.

    I figured that Linda Yamamoto was doing some acting but had no idea about her involvement in "Kamen Rider". There has been a long history of bi-national celebrities in Japan, including the current generation of people like Rie Miyazawa and Erika Sawajiri. I actually taught one young lady a decade or so ago by the name of Francoise Hirota; apparently, she went into wrestling as well.

    Yep, Ms. Yamamoto has been keeping herself in good shape.

    ReplyDelete

Feel free to provide any comments (pro or con). Just be civil about it.