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.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Hitomi Yaida -- my sweet darlin'

Darlin, dar-LIN!

Heard that line a whole lot for several months going into the 21st century. At the end of the 80s going into the 90s, there were quite a few girl bands rocking out which was followed by several years of Tetsuya Komuro and his dance-pop units followed by a resurgence in aidorus of a new breed (Johnny's and The Hello Project) and the budding of J-R&B. So it was nice to hear a return of sorts of women rocking out again (although Nanase Aikawa had her debut in the mid-90s) with singer-songwriter Hitomi Yaida(矢井田瞳).

Her nickname of Yaiko was another familiar catchword from 2000 for a few years all over the media waves. The video for Yaida's 2nd single of "my sweet darlin'" also got a lot of airplay as she sprayed that fire hose all over the fashion models while hearing that ringing falsetto. It was fun to listen to the song and "my sweet darlin'" is one of the standout tunes stuck in my memory of my times in Japan.

Yaida hails from Metropolitan Osaka and went to Kansai University where she majored in French language and French literature. However, at the age of 19, she picked up a guitar for the first time and within 2 years, she made her professional debut as a singer starting in May 2000 on an independent label with "Howling" and then her 1st official single a couple of months later at Toshiba-EMI with "B'coz I Love You". Then came "my sweet darlin'" in October. Talk about hitting the road at top speed. The singer created the song which peaked at No. 8 on Oricon although it didn't seem to chart on either the 2000 or 2001 lists unfortunately. A full English-language version was also created for UK release a few months later under the title "Darling Darling".

As for her inspirations, according to J-Wiki, Yaida was influenced by singers Joan Osborne and Alanis Morissette.

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