I think one of the reasons that the Japanese have been so much in love with Hawaii is surfing. There is nothing more that hints at the pure hedonistic pleasure of leisure than hanging ten on that surfboard on a big wave. And for folks who have often been perceived to approach the act of work like a military mission, hitting the surf must feel like to some as absolute joy.
"Moonlight Surfer" is a song that I've got a couple of copies of. I've got the original by Seri Ishikawa （石川セリ）but over the past Christmas as I was listening to one of my latest acquisitions in the form of "Moonlight Island" by Haruko Kuwana（桑名晴子）, there was a cover of Ishikawa's 8th single from 1979. However, the Kuwana version cannot be found anywhere on the Net but hearing it on the CD was enough for me to talk about the original.
The single may have come out in 1979 but it was originally the first track on Ishikawa's 3rd album, "Kimagure"（気まぐれ...Whimsy）which was released in June 1977. Written and composed by rock singer Haruo Nakamura（中村治雄）, it's about that girl tagging along with her guy who just has this thing for trying to catch that wave at night. There is that hint of 50s in the arrangements, although the tinkling piano intro had me first thinking whether it was Yuming behind the melody as was the case with "Asayake ga Kieru Mae ni"（朝焼けが消える前に）, but it soon became apparent that it musically described that trip down to the beach in that old DeSoto with the surfboards tied up on top.
Marcos V. covered pin-up model-turned-singer/actress/tarento Reiko Kato（かとうれいこ）for her song "Love Motion", and he mentioned about her Eurobeat tunes. Kato's cover of "Moonlight Surfer" had none of that influence, instead going for a slightly reggae beat when it was released as her 3rd single in October 1991. I never knew Kato as a singer since I primarily saw her as a regular on various variety shows on the telly, but she's got a pretty good voice, and especially with her cover here, she does have quite a bit of enthusiasm for the material.
|Sorry, only daylight surfers here.|