And here I thought that Seiko Matsuda（松田聖子）went truly "international" with "Marrakech" in 1988. Of course, Seiko-chan probably had quite a number of overseas-flavoured songs in her discography since her debut in 1980 but "Marrakech" was the one that has always lingered in my mind.
But then I came across "Miami Gozen Go-ji" (5am in Miami) on YouTube some time ago. A track on her 7th album from June 1983, "Utopia", it was placed on the A-side which was labeled the "blue-island side". As I listened to the song, I automatically compared it with the later "Marrakech" which admittedly was like comparing apples to oranges (different times, different sounds). Still it was interesting nonetheless to remember "Marrakech" as this somewhat sultry and adventurous number from the late 80s while "Miami Gozen Go-ji" has this almost fantastical feeling (I was thinking Disney World here instead of Crockett and Tubbs) surrounding an innocent romance in The Sunshine State. The chorus backing her up almost felt like the sea breeze wafting in from the Atlantic.
Listening to all the mellowness, I should have figured that it was Takao Kisugi（来生たかお）who came up with the music while Takashi Matsumoto（松本隆）wrote the lyrics. "Miami Gozen Go-ji" was not an official single but the album "Utopia"（ユートピア）hit No. 1 on the charts. Apparently, according to J-Wiki, the song was still a popular one on the concert play list well into the 2000s. And when it comes down to it, listening to the song, I feel like I should be doing some more stocking up on Seiko albums.