It's been almost 2 years since I mentioned about the Sendai-born singer Miyuki Hatakeyama（畠山美由紀） in this blog through an article about Tomita Lab. "Taegatakumo Amai Kisetsu"（耐え難くも甘い季節） is this wonderfully hammock-friendly song that was featured on TL's album, "Shipbuilding", but actually I had heard Hatakeyama before that one came out (although that album was released in February 2003). It was her 4th single, "Umi ga Hoshii no ni" (But I Want The Sea) which came out in July 2003.
As the release date intimates, "Umi ga Hoshii no ni" is this summery light disco-soul tune that was composed by Hatakeyama and written by Shingo Sato（佐藤慎吾）. It reminds me of some of the stuff that singers like Bird and Misia released around the same time (and perhaps I can see British group Swingout Sister doing an English version of it). And yet Hatakeyama's voice remains mellow and distinct from the splendid voices of the other two. I think the song would make for fine listening at any of the trendy little cafes in the Harajuku area of Tokyo.
I'm not sure if that sort of music is still coming out of Japan now, but just a few hours ago, my Skype student mentioned that the 80s were back on the upswing in terms of popular culture over there. Perhaps he was just referring to the aidorus back as well as the fashion statement of letterman jackets, but it would be nice if the 80s boom also included some of the current singers bringing back some of that good ol' American R&B from those days.