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, October 27, 2014

Seiko Matsuda -- Heart no Earring (ハートのイアリング)

"Stay with me..."

For some reason, "Heart no Earring" (Heart Earring) has been one of the quintessential Seiko Matsuda(松田聖子)songs. I think it's just the way she especially delivers that first line in that sweet chirp of a voice; I suddenly get that image of My Little Pony and sugar and spice and all that's nice. As I recall, our Seiko-chan specialist back in our days of hitting Kuri in Yorkville was always singing her 19th single, and getting some good measure of applause once she finished.

"Heart no Earring" was released back in November 1984, and I actually heard the original version from her 10th album, "Windy Shadow" which came out a few weeks later in December. The lyrics about a young lady who is trying to entice that beau of her dreams from that other girl were written by Takashi Matsumoto(松本隆)and the laid back melody was by Holland Rose. It hit No. 1 and despite the lateness of the debut, the song managed to become the 68th-ranked song of 1984. It even went up a couple of spots to No. 66 for 1985.

Now, as for that Holland Rose character. Well, it was apparently a pseudonym straight out of the playbook that Yumi Matsutoya(松任谷由実)had used to create her Karuho Kureta (呉田軽穂...when read in the Japanese way, it sounds a bit like Greta Garbo) moniker when she created songs for Seiko. Pop-rocker Motoharu Sano(佐野元春)was hosting his radio program when one of his listeners, an elementary school student, mistakenly wrote mail with "Holland Rose" in katakana when he/she had meant to refer to American duo Hall & Oates. Sano was amused enough to adopt it as a pen name when he gave his contributions to the Seiko discography.


  1. Hi, J-Canuck.

    It's always nice to hear a Seiko-chan classic. Yesterday, for example, I had the chance to watch a new commercial where the eternal aidoru herself sings "Akai Sweet Pea" with famous singer/actress Takako Matsu (she confessed that singing with Seiko-chan made her very nervous).

    About "Heart no Earring", it's a pleasant listen, as almost all of Seiko's 80s classic tunes. She sings it in a very soft way, and she does it in great style (I always imagine a beautiful blue sky when I listen to Seiko's voice). I remember reading an article written by an American journalist around 1996 in which he subestimated Seiko-chans vocals in favor of Namie Amuro's. For me, it was just plain absurd that he would claim that Seiko was not capable of conducting a song without singing out of tune or without hitting notes with her high-pitched vocals. I don't know what Seiko he heard at the time, but it was probably not the same girl who sang timeless and enjoyable songs like "Heart no Earring", "Shiroi Parasol", "Akai Sweet Pea", "Kimono Beat" or "Aoi Sangoshou", for example.

    I only know that the "Seiko Story 80's Hits Collection" compilation is defintely on my wish list.

    1. Good to hear from another ardent Seiko-chan fan. To be honest, yes, she never had that pitch-perfect voice that singers like Hiromi Iwasaki have had, but that was part of the point of being an 80s aidoru: not being pitch-perfect but being cute and adorable with a voice to match and having imperfect teeth. :) I mean, for me, when I start remembering back to the 80s, the FIRST theme song of that time will usually be "Akai Sweet Pea" and Naoko Kawai's "Smile For Me" and then the City Pop will follow afterwards.


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