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.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

SAWA -- Mr. Brown

I’m an old SAWA fan, so there’re a ton of great songs from her that I could talk about today. But after some days thinking which song I would highlight, “Mr. Brown” was my final decision.

Although originally a Technopop artist, SAWA started recording more organic songs in 2012. She didn’t abandon the Techno style, but both styles became the norm in her discography. Her latest mini-album, “RingaRinga”, for example, features half Technopop, half organic songs. As for “Mr. Brown”, it’s part of the second group.

Originally released as a digital single in 2013, “Mr. Brown” is a cute and catchy song where SAWA explores her signature high-pitched vocals. Because of that fact alone, the song may not be very suitable for everyone.

About the song itself, it’s a mixture of pop with light Jazz and Bossa Nova influences thrown here and there, which actually quite works with SAWA’s clumsy and awkward vocals. One of my favorite parts of it is when SAWA, after the first chorus, starts the second verse with a very cute “ii...”. Other interesting part is, of course, when the song gets into the climax and SAWA goes up some octaves for one of the last Mr. Brown shouts. In the end, I also find “Mr. Brown” a very clever song, mostly because during the verses SAWA seems kinda uncomitted, and in the choruses she just delivers a high and energetic performance. This kind of up and down takes the listener into an interesting journey.

As a side note, SAWA wrote, composed and partly arranged Especia’s first notorious single, the retro-styled dance-pop song “Midnight Confusion” (ミッドナイトConfusion). She even recorded a rearranged version of the song for the “RingaRinga” mini-album. Both versions are great, but I just catch myself listening to SAWA’s version more often.

"Mr. Brown" was placed in SAWA's "RingaRinga" mini-album, which was released in September 2014. "Mr. Brown" was written, composed and arranged by SAWA herself.

To finish, here's my copy of the "RingaRinga" mini-album.


  1. Hi, Marcos.

    I never heard of SAWA before tonight so this is a pretty nice choice to start off her file with. I think if she had been born several decades earlier, she probably would have ended up as a singer for a jazzy Big Band. Nice drum intro. I wouldn't have imagined that she did technopop. The only thing is that I can't really understand what she sings at the beginning. Is she scatting there? It sounds vaguely French.

    1. Hi, J-Canuck.

      Although SAWA is known for recording Technopop songs, I just feel that she likes this type of jazzy pop a little more.

      About what she says at the beginning, it's not french. In fact, it's a mix of scatting with english. I checked the booklet and here what she says: "BA DO BOUNCE! BA DO DO DO BOUNCE!".


Feel free to provide any comments (pro or con). Just be civil about it.