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.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Rie Miyazawa -- Dream Rush

At certain times in Japanese pop culture, there was an up-and-coming female celebrity who seemed to hit critical mass and ended up everywhere in dramas and commercials...perhaps even cut a few hits in the studios. Actresses Ryoko Hirosue (from the Oscar-winning Japanese film "Departures") and Makiko Esumi were two of those folks who I called the IT girls for their respective years. But even before them, there was Rie Miyazawa(宮沢りえ).

During my 2 years in Gunma Prefecture, the half-Japanese half Dutch Miyazawa was as much a fixture on the tube as the old-fashioned antenna. I used to wake up to her when she appeared on those Fujitsu computer ads while "Bad Communication" by B'z was playing away. There were also those Kit Kat commercials along with tons of other products she was helping to hawk. And she was a semi-regular cast member on my must-see Thursday TV comedy-variety program, "Tunnels no Minasan no Okage desu" as the sassy high school student (hard to imagine nowadays considering her waifish appearance and less frequent appearances). Things hit a peak when she posed nude for her photobook "Santa Fe" in 1991 and then was temporarily engaged to the wildly popular sumo wrestler Takahanada in late 1992 (who eventually was promoted to the top rank of yokozuna under the name Takanohana). Just let it be said that Miyazawa was on top of the world during the late 80s and early 90s.

Of course, being a Japanese IT girl at that time usually meant that fans would also get to hear her musical side. And in September 1989, Miyazawa debuted with "Dream Rush" which had been created by composer and future J-Pop Svengali Tetsuya Komuro (小室哲哉)and lyricist Masumi Kawamura(川村真澄). They were the same duo behind Misato Watanabe's (渡辺美里)"My Revolution" a few years previously, and at a certain part in the song, there is an echo of melody which makes me wonder about how the stronger-voiced Misato would have handled "Dream Rush". Nope, Rie didn't have anything near the mighty vocals of Watanabe but the cute delivery and Komuro's catchy tune helped save the day. It peaked at No. 2 on the Oricon weeklies and became the 25th-ranked song of the year. Speaking of B'z, Takahiro Matsumoto (松本孝弘)helped out with the guitar on the song.

The above is a 12-year-old Miyazawa (1985) in a Kit Kat commercial along with another future IT girl, Kumiko Goto.

"Dream Rush" is also a track on
her debut album "MU" (1990).

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