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Saturday, April 4, 2015

Taeko Ohnuki -- Omohide (憶ひ出)


"Adieu, peut-être que nous allons rencontrer un jour!" 

(Thank you, Google Translate...or maybe not, depending the response I get from French readers.)

In any case, I kinda felt like saying that statement above which I hope is the translation for "Farewell, perhaps we will meet again someday!" after listening to Taeko Ohnuki's(大貫妙子)"Omohide" (Memoire). I tried looking up that exact kanji as written on the album that it came from, "Cliche", but it didn't register anywhere at my usual sources. I can only surmise that Ohnuki, who wrote and composed the song, wanted to get a little deep with her kanji by using a fancier version of "omoi" with「憶」instead of the usual「思」. And I'm not quite sure what was up with that hiragana in the middle; perhaps that may have been an older pronunciation of the word "omoide".

Speaking of deep, man, those are some sad and dramatic strings for the long intro. I mean, I do like the ballad but I really felt like staring through a rainy window for the next several hours (yesterday would have been perfect) after listening to "Omohide". This is about as representative of Ohnuki's French period as anything that she released during the early 80s. And the lyrics just had me thinking the depressing end of a love affair in Paris in some black & white movie...perhaps that heartbreaking scene in "Casablanca" when Humphrey Bogart's Rick got that drenched "Dear John" letter from Ilsa while hopping on the train out of The City of Lights.

Omohide wo
Tsubuyaku anata no
Kuchibiru wa
Kasuka ni furueru dake

Haruka ni kemuru
Kioku no umi wo
Anata wo noseta fune ga
Minato e kaeru

Murmuring about
The memories, your
Lips are
Just barely moving

Far off, it's fogging up
The sea of memories
I've put you on the ship
Heading back to the port

Ohnuki is on the rocks away from the island pier with the wind-driven rain driving at her face while she determinedly sees off her beloved forever. I could imagine her saying that top quote I crafted to her beloved although both are aware that it will never come true. Well, perhaps not the most cheerful song in her discography but I think it's pretty well-crafted although I'm not too surprised that it wasn't even released as the B-side of a single. "Omohide" is definitely contemplative album-bound material.

As I said, the song was originally a track on Ohnuki's 6th album from 1982, "Cliche" which I've already profiled. There are also a couple of other tracks from the LP that I've also written about separately: the whimsical "Peter Rabbit to Watashi"(ピーターラビットと私)and the Maurice Chevalier-friendly "Tsumuji Kaze"(つむじ風).

On the sea of memories, indeed.

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