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.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Takashi Hosokawa -- Enka Bune (艶歌船)

'Enka Bune' (Enka boat/boat of Enka) would pretty much be the most fitting song for Enka veteran Takashi Hosokawa (細川たかし) to commemorate 40 long years of being in showbiz... well to be exact 39 years since it was released just one month ago on September 17. But hey, celebrating early would be better than celebrating late, right?

Anyway, the first thing that hits you when listening to this song would be the rolling drums and the sting of the electric guitar that gives it an overly manly, sharp edge. Then comes the flute part that would give 'Enka bune' a slightly softer side to balance it out. All that brought to you by Akihito Masuda (増田空人) and the lyrics were done by Yurio Matsui (松井由利夫). With such a bold start, it was no wonder that on the week it was released, 'Enka Bune' shot up to 6th place on the Oricon charts... under the Enka and Kayokyoku category, that is... ... Still, that's pretty good.

It kinda gives you the image of a boat on the raging sea with dark skies above and Hosokawa at the stern. Listening to it for the first time actually sent shivers down my spine! Or it could just have been the demon noh mask on one of Hosokawa's kimonos that was creepy and unnerving. Come on, that thing looks like it's staring into your soul with its beady sequin eyes.

(karaoke version)

I remember seeing Hosokawa on a somewhat recent episode of NHK's 'Nodojiman' and he looked so dignified and manly in an all black kimono plus a black haori (something like a coat) on the outside while singing the song. And after all these years his voice is still really amazing! Really loud, strong and amazing!

Oh God, that noh mask is really giving the creeps

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