Where do I begin here? From what angle do I approach this?
Well, let's see...the very first Akina Nakamori（中森明菜）song that I heard was "Kinku"（禁区）on the 1983 Kohaku Utagassen and then came a number of her early hits on broadcasts of "Sounds of Japan" followed by my first purchases of her albums "Bitter and Sweet" and "D404ME" when she was already hitting superstardom. And then, I just had to buy her BEST compilation of those first few years of her still young career. So I basically got my grounding for Akina-chan, pre and post vocal change.
Then somewhere down the line, I ended up borrowing a video tape titled "NEW AKINA Etranger - Akina Nakamori in Europe" which had the bonny lass taking a nice little trip through France. Some of that video is right up at the top there with the young aidoru of my memories traipsing around Paris with that big hair, crinkly eyes and winning smile. Of course, the music from her just-released album was also playing in the background.
It took a couple of years but during my time in Gunma Prefecture, I finally bought that album, "NEW AKINA Etranger" which was originally released in August 1983 as her 4th album. According to the write-up on J-Wiki, it was touted as somewhat of a reboot for the singer with the catchphrase being:
"Recording and filming in Europe, and encountering new songwriters. The second history of Akina begins here."
Pretty bold words. Aside from her early singles, I don't have anything to represent her first 3 albums so I can't really make any comparison about Stage 1 Akina and Stage 2 Akina....with the exception of that high voice that she once had at the beginning.
|New Akina Etranger|