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, April 26, 2014

Keiko Mizukoshi/Sunmyu/Noriko Sakai -- Hoho ni Kiss Shite (ほほにキスをして)

Singer-songwriter Keiko Mizukoshi's(水越けいこ) "Hoho ni Kiss Shite" (Kiss Me on the Cheek) was a song I found on one of the discs for the "Good Time Divas" series of female singers in the latter half of the 20th century (in fact, the 2nd picture in the article for that series is the CD that has the song). From what I've heard of some of her other songs on YouTube, the Yamanashi Prefecture native sounds like another one of those singers that I would like to get to know better and perhaps grab a BEST compilation.

Initially performing as one-half of duo Hime Daruma(姫だるま), she decided to go solo and debuted with "Shiawase wo Arigato"(しあわせをありがとう...Thanks, Happiness)in June 1978. But it was with her 3rd single in July 1979, "Hoho ni Kiss Shite", that she hit some measure of success on the Oricon charts. Kaoru Ito(伊藤薫), who later provided Anri(杏里) with the cute "Cotton Kibun"(コットン気分) in 1981, wrote and composed this just-as-cute ditty whose lyrics and arrangement reminded me of an updated 50s novelty song. On listening to this, I immediately whipped up an image of a newlywed couple in their new manshon in which happy wife is waiting for that peck on the cheek from slightly embarrassed hubby before he takes off for his 12 hours at the company. Yup, cute as Hello Kitty.

The song managed to get as high as No. 33 on the singles charts and is also included as a track on "Heart", her 2nd album from August 1979.

In 2012, entertainment company Sun Music Productions introduced their first aidoru, individual or group, in 21 years since Michiyo Nakajima(中嶋美智代). Named Sunmyu(さんみゅ~), the group consists of 8 girls in their late teens and up to this point, they've released 5 singles of which their first three were covers of songs by Mizukoshi, Yukiko Okada(岡田有希子) and Jitterin' Jinn. Sunmyu's version of "Hoho ni Kiss Shite" is bright and skippy and the intro beat reminds me of the one that starts off Misato Watanabe's(渡辺美里) "My Revolution". Released in April 2013, it got as high as No. 91.

(Sorry but the music 163 link is dead.)

I didn't think I would find a copy of it on the Net, but the above is Noriko Sakai's (酒井法子)cover of "Hoho ni Kiss Shite" from February 1990 in all its synth glory. And Sakai sounds as cute and twinkly as ever. It was the coupling song to her 13th single, "Kofuku Nante Hoshikunai wa"(幸福なんてほしくないわ...I Don't Need Anything Like Happiness).

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