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.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Minako Honda -- That's The Way I Want It




I remember that the first time I heard this Minako-chan (本田美奈子) song was on a mixtape called “Tokyo Boogie Night” that was created by Ansai Osamu featuring some interesting 80s Japanese funk/city pop songs (click here if you’re interested in hearing the mixtape. I easily recommend it).

Originally released in Minako Honda’s “OVERSEA” album, in June 1987, the simple yet interesting “That’s The Way I Want It” was recorded entirely in English. In fact, the entire “OVERSEA” album was recorded in English. Also, according to this source, Minako worked with Michael Jackson’s staff in the record. Being more accurate, she worked with some musicians that were involved with Janet and La Toya careers, but not directly with Michael’s team (Minako even invited La Toya Jackson to sing Lipps Inc.’s classic disco song, “Funkytown”, with her in the “DISPA [short for Disco Party] 1987” concert. It was a very odd moment that, unfortunately, isn’t on YouTube anymore). About “That’s The Way I Want It”, for me, it’s not a late night song, but one that combines better with the sunset in a highway near the beach. Although far from being a complex or very notorious song, it’s one of my favorites. I just love the twinkling synths and its laidback breezy feel.

According to J-Wiki, the “OVERSEA” album reached #4 on the Oricon charts, but another source talks about a #5 position. Also, this same source points out that the album has sold around 58,000 copies (source: http://wagamamakorin.client.jp/saku-minako.html). As for “That’s The Way I Want It”, it was written and composed by Mike Piccirillo. As for the arrangement, John Wilson was the responsible.

3 comments:

  1. Hey, Marcos.

    I have to say that "That's The Way I Want It" is pretty darn interesting since I only knew Minako Honda as that Madonna wannabe on the ranking shows and then going into hard rock later into the decade. I didn't know about her attempts at good ol' R&B.

    I checked out the track list for "Tokyo Boogie Night" and was intrigued enough to download it. I'm definitely interested in hearing Miho Nakayama and Mari Iijima. Thanks for the tip.

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    Replies
    1. Minako was a true chameleon in the aidoru world. She tried a lot of different styles in few years. The "OVERSEA" album features this type of sound in its entirety and, as a whole, it's probably my favorite of her.

      I like "Tokyo Boogie Night" very much. The selection is pretty good, in my opinion. Also, I discovered a lot of great songs because of it, like Tetsuo Sakurai's "Kimono" and Toshiki Kadomatsu's "Lucky Lady Feels So Good", for example. Although you probably know the majority of the songs in the mix, I hope you likes it.

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  2. 1986 nen no Marilyn, seen here in 3 clips, is a good example of Minako's changes in style. It made its first appearance during her Madonna wannabe days when, frankly, she was a rubbish singer (wiki says the song was the reason for her Madonna wannbe image). It made another appearance in the 2nd clip, where it's rearranged to reflect her shift to classical music. It makes a literally last appearance in the 3rd clip, which was her last broadcast, as a summary of her musical styles, with 1986 nen no Marilyn being her pop idol song, I'd Give my Life for You her musical song (her signature song from Miss Saigon), and closing with Nessun Dorma.

    1986 nen no Marilyn (1980s concert)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2wB6JDHR5wU

    Minako unplugged (1996, Junction)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ORQky1Z0lU

    Last broadcast (2004)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aYrQrkc_SJo

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