Well, according to the headlines at Mixi, NHK made this announcement at 5 p.m. JST December 28 (3 a.m. Eastern Standard Time the same day): Akina Nakamori（中森明菜）would be returning to the Kohaku Utagassen for the first time since her last appearance on the New Year's Eve special in 2002. And considering that she had been out of the geino spotlight since 2010....Christmas will be coming around once again for Akina fans (Akinans? Akirers? Akinoids?). Apparently, she won't be singing on the NHK Hall stage but will be broadcasting live from the United States, and the song will probably be her latest single to be released in January, "Rojo Tierra".
Rumours had been swirling about this possible appearance by Akina-chan, but when the producer of this year's Kohaku was being interviewed live on NHK's "Asaichi", I didn't recall hearing anything about her name, although he did mention that there were some fairly intense negotiations going on as they spoke.
I was planning to write this article in any event, but with this news coming out in the last several hours....well, it's about as good a time as any with the year growing nigh. So I give you my own favourite Akina songs. All of them have already been given their profile on the blog so I won't harangue you too long here...feel free to be harangued at the other articles when you click on the titles.
6. Ni-bun no Ichi no Shinwa （1/2の神話）1983
Along with "Shojo A"（少女Ａ）, this is the song from her early years toting that image of tough high school rebel. Right from Note 1, the Yoshiyuki Osawa-composed rocker takes off on its high-octane ride while Akina mouths off at all who dare to tsk-tsk her lifestyle. When I first listened to "Ni-bun no Ichi no Shinwa", that guitar had the hairs on the back of my neck standing at attention during the bridge. The guitar pretty much leapt over that bridge!
5. Kita Wing （北ウィング）1984
When it comes to those early years, "Kita Wing" is the one favourite that will represent that time. As I mentioned in the article for the song itself, it's neither a rocker nor a ballad but a pop flight filled with thrills and uncertainty for the young lady sprinting away from all that she's known. I like both the soaring refrain and the more contemplative passages.
To be frankly honest, I didn't take much time to come up with the list since if I had gone deep into my thoughts about this, I would have ended up catatonic right up until o-zoni time on January 1st coming up with my favourites. From this lady, there are many, and there is a reason that she has the 2nd-largest number of articles on this blog (next to Yuming).
There might be at least one more Akina list coming out by one of the other writers here, so stay tuned. I'm looking forward to the discussion! And of course, I'm looking forward to Akina herself in a few days. The ratings may just spike up like a stalagmite.