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.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Kenji Sawada -- I am I

Years ago, I had taped this lovely ballad by Kenji Sawada(沢田研二), "I am I" from "Sounds of Japan", only to accidentally erase it with a number of other songs, thanks to the usual affliction known as teenage stupidity. So I am once again indebted to the good uploaders at YouTube.

"I am I" was originally the B-side to Sawada's 29th single as a solo artist, the more famous "TOKIO", and it struck me originally since it had that lush Elton John-esque in the intro. And from my initial image of him as that outrageous glam rocker, I couldn't quite believe it was him performing this tender little tune. In addition, I'm still kinda getting over the fact that it was actually made for a commercial selling the Nissan Bluebird 910. Basically, this was a love song for a car. Herbie the Love Bug can only be jealous at this right now.

Written by copywriter Takashi Nakahata(仲畑貴志) and composed by Takayuki Inoue(井上堯之), former guitarist for the Group Sounds band, The Spiders, "I am I" was released with "TOKIO"on New Year's Day 1980. I'm not sure if Nakahata and Inoue had intended it, but there seems to be a bit of a Paul Anka's "My Way" vibe to it. I could imagine the dandy persona of Sawada singing this with his jacket slung over his shoulder and fedora rakishly covering his head while he walks off into the sunset.....heading over to a Nissan Bluebird 910.

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