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.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Mariko Kurata -- HOW! Wonderful (HOW! ワンダフル)

Came across this cute little ditty by Mariko Kurata(倉田まり子)a few days ago so I decided to write about it. "HOW! Wonderful" was Kurata's 3rd single from August 1979 written by Michio Yamagami(山上路夫)and composed by Shunichi Tokura(都倉俊一), and unlike the first Kurata song that I wrote about, the more introspective "Sayonara Rainy Station"(さよならレイニー・ステーション), "HOW! Wonderful" is a pretty genki song which wouldn't surprise me if anyone else termed it an aidoru tune.

The happy-go-lucky song has that feeling of a summery walk down at the park with Kurata sporting a twirling parasol, a fashion accessory that very much still has a place in Japanese society, especially when the sun is firing down during the torrid months of July and August. In a way, the tune almost sounds like a prototype for the aidoru songs for the early 1980s.

I'm not sure how high "HOW! Wonderful" went up the charts although from checking the entamedata chart for 1979, it didn't end up on the yearly single list. Still, according to J-Wiki, the song earned Kurata a number of awards as Best Newcomer along with some newly found popularity. In the same article, there was apparently some talk about her resemblance to another young singer at the time, Hitomi Ishikawa(石川ひとみ).

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