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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, July 3, 2014

Kyoko Endo -- Kokuhaku Telephone (告白テレフォン)


From the articles that nikala and I wrote on Kyoko Endo's (遠藤京子)songs and listening to both, and seeing her shining face in "Japanese City Pop", I was pretty interested in finding out more about her work in general, so when opportunity rose to get some more CDs, I decided to get her "Golden Best" collection. Taking a listen to the full album last night, there was a bit of a superficial resemblance to singer-songwriter Kingo Hamada (濱田金吾)in that Endo has cut a fairly wide swathe between City Pop and Swing Jazz. The critic writing about her third album, "Yume Miru Star" (夢見るスター...Dreamwatching Stars)in "Japanese City Pop" mentioned her "milky voice". I'd probably go with "creamy voice" here in Toronto (since I think the cholesterol problem is a bit more pronounced here), but in any case, it is a pretty distinct one that likes to tackle all sorts of musical hooks. Sometimes, I get hints of EPO and then in other songs, I hear Reimy(麗美).

(cover version)

The first track in her "Golden Best" is "Kokuhaku Telephone" (Confession Call). Not surprisingly, it is her debut single from November 1981 written by Endo and composed by Kyohei Tsutsumi(筒美京平). Hearing those first few notes, I initially thought that the singer started out as an aidoru (she was over 22 years old at the time which would have been practically ancient for a Japanese teenybopper singer) but then the song hits the ground to instantly change into something a bit closer to a fast-paced City Pop. However, Endo's lyrics focus solely on a woman's few minutes of trepidation prior to making that telephone call to confess her love to the lucky fellow. My own first few seconds of trepidation were quickly alleviated as "Kokuhaku Telephone" turned out to be this quirky and catchy pop tune of the 80s. And I was going to hear some more interesting stuff as the album went through its 77 minutes. The single itself also made it onto her debut album, "Operetta" from December 1981.


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