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, August 11, 2014

Seiko Matsuda -- Bon Voyage (ボン・ボヤージュ)

It's time for another summery Seiko tune. "Bon Voyage" was the B-side to Seiko Matsuda's (松田聖子)16th single from February 1984, "Rock N' Rouge", and instead of the peppy melody from the A-side, the B-side was a relaxing mid-tempo musical vacation stroll.

Written by Takashi Matsumoto (松本隆)and composed by Karuho Kureta(呉田軽穂), listening to it again tonight after some years, I came to a realization. Yumi Matsutoya(松任谷由実), under her pen name of Kureta, made a number of songs for Seiko-chan in the early 80s that suited the aidoru's style, but on hearing "Bon Voyage", I feel that Seiko was singing a Yuming song instead, when I take into consideration the Yuming sound at that time. There is just something about the sound of the synths and the overall feel of the song that had me thinking that the Queen of New Music could have easily tackled this one herself.

I also assumed from the title that the song was about a voyage on the ocean, but after going through the lyrics, Matsumoto had actually written about a couple's first trip together through the mountains by train. And train is the way to go in Japan. Under those circumstances, I could also envisage some luxury train running through the Rockies in Alberta. In any case, "Bon Voyage" has that playful and comfy feeling probably reflecting the couple's happy relationship.

"Rock N' Rouge"/"Bon Voyage" was another No. 1 single for Seiko which became the 3rd-most successful single for 1984. However, I first heard it as a track on her album of Kureta-penned hits, "Train" from 1985.

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