There is a word that can sum up George Yamamoto's (山本譲二) 35th single.
I had only known Yamamoto for his intense breakthrough hit 'Michinoku Hitoritabi' and 'Roman -ROMAN-', the rather hippity-hop sounding duet between him and half of the owarai duo Tunnels, Noritake Kinashi (木梨憲武).
But when I was looking through the Enka singer's discography (helps to give new song suggestions), I came across the title of this song that I've seen pop up from time to time. So finally I had decided to not be lazy and listen to it and it did not disappoint.
With the trumpets coming on first before that electric guitar portion - that's the best part! Or at least that's what I think. Then we have the very tanned - not sure if its his natural skin colour, or just too much sun from golfing - Yamamoto dressed in a dapper suit with that little smile of his while crooning away.
'Yume Kaido' was released in 1995 on the 5th of July and was Yamamoto's second attempt at writing his own song under his pen name, Goro Koto (琴 五郎) and with his former mentor, Saburo Kitajima (北島三郎) doing/providing the draft for the lyrics. His first go at it was his 31st single in 1994 'Kanmon kaikyo'. Huh, I didn't know he writes his own songs...
There was no mention of how well this song did on the charts, but I'm assuming it fared quite well since 'Yume Kaido' allowed Yamamoto to win 'Best Singer' at the 37th Japan Record Awards. But despite its accolades, he never sung it during his 13 appearances at the Kohaku.
Link above is another of his performances of this song (it's deleted, unfortunately). That mic drop and casual salute at the end makes me want to say Kakkoi ne~... ... What? It's not weird...! I just appreciate his style, that's all...