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.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

UA -- Haru ga Kita (春がきた)

Spring has indeed come! For us here in Toronto, the temperatures are slowly rising up through the single digits and the clumps of dark (and other-coloured) snow are also gradually being absorbed into the ground or sublimating into the atmosphere. We may even hit the big 10-degree mark by Saturday! In Tokyo, they're already into the double digits and the cherry blossoms are starting to open up which means another O-hanami season. Of course, the cedar trees have also opened up, which means hay fever season as well. And I had a very congested Skype student to prove that.

Last year, I put up Candies' "Haru Ichiban"春一番), the seasonal classic by the big aidoru group of the early 1970s. Well today, I'm gonna put up the classic children's song, "Haru ga Kita" (Spring Has Come). Written by Tatsuyuki Takano(高野振之) and composed by Teiichi Okano(岡野貞一) in 1910, the song first appeared in the Ministry of Education's "Everyday Elementary School Textbook Songs", and over the century, it would become the customary thing to sing once March and April come around.

Of course, a ton of singers have crooned the children's classic. I just heard veteran actress-singer Chieko Baisho of "Tora-san" fame perform it on an NHK special just the other day. And then, there is UA's short-but-very-sweet performance. In the 1990s, she first showed her great chops as an R&B/pop singer, but some years later, she also gained fame lending her voice to children's songs. Her heartfelt version of "Haru ga Kita" first came to light almost a century after the song's first appearance in that elementary reader through a compilation album titled "Nihon no Uta Dai San Shuu"(にほんのうた第三集.....Songs of Japan, 3rd Collection).

In 2007, the "Nihon no Uta Hyakusen"日本の歌百選), or "The Collection of 100 Japanese Songs" was announced for which "Haru ga Kita"was No. 79, ordered according to the Japanese syllabary.

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