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.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Kiyoshi Hikawa -- Tokimeki no Rumba (ときめきのルンバ)

The young fellow who I like to call The Luke Skywalker of Enka went for Mood Kayo with his "Tokimeki no Rumba" (Pulsating Rumba), Kiyoshi Hikawa's (氷川きよし)19th single and the 2nd of his two singles to commemorate his 10th anniversary in the business. Despite its relatively recent birth in August 2009, "Tokimeki no Rumba" had me thinking about all those old bar-friendly Mood Kayo songs from decades past and to a certain extent, I was reminded of groups such as The Cool Five and Los Indios.

Written by Reiji Mizuki (水木れいじ)and composed by Hideo Mizumori(水森英夫), the lyrics have that classic Mood Kayo feel of a couple heading into love as the guy offers a weeping young lady that broad and dry shoulder to cry upon. Hikawa has always been that handsome showman on stage (I think he ought to be considered to play the con artist Professor Harold Hill if a Japanese version of "The Music Man" comes once more to pass), and he went pretty epic when he and his song was on the set of the 2009 Kohaku Utagassen as shown through the above link. I was also reminded of the song when he showed up recently on an episode of NHK's regular series "Kayo Concert"(歌謡コンサート)to perform it once more.

The fact that he was on the Kohaku should quickly let you know that "Tokimeki no Rumba" had hit the top spot on Oricon (imagine a Mood Kayo in this day and age hitting No. 1...I do think Hikawa is that Enka Jedi) and became the 27th-ranked song of the year. The song also managed to get on his album titled "Hikawa Kiyoshi -- Enka Meikyoku Collection 11"(氷川きよし~演歌名曲コレクション11...Kiyoshi Hikawa -- Famous Enka Song Collection 11)from November 2009 which reached No. 2 on the weeklies. Enka/Mood Kayo may not be as far-reaching as it once was, but neither of them are far from dead.

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