From the weird corner of YouTube, I bring you Frank Chickens（フランク・チキンズ）.
During my whole time listening to "Sounds of Japan" on CHIN-FM, I was accustomed to hearing enka and pop from the country of my ancestors. However one Saturday night, I just heard this tune from a pop performance group called Frank Chickens called "We Are Ninja" which just seemed to have come out from left field....if the baseball diamond had been located on Mars. The song was the 1984 debut single by the original duo of Kazuko Hohki（法貴和子）and Kazumi Taguchi（カズミ・タグチ）.
The reason I remember Frank Chickens is simply because "We Are Ninja" sounded so unlike the usual fare that came onto my old radio show. Just imagine a minimalist technopop tune sung by a slow-rapping pair of Berlitz students. I just went "OK...that's definitely not Pink Lady..." There was that bass beat which reminded me of Queen's "Another One Bites The Dust", but otherwise this definitely was one weird song. I had no idea that their presence was known on YouTube. Listening to "We Are Ninja" again, I'm sorely tempted to open up the New Wave category on the blog since there have been a few other tunes that we've written about that perhaps deserve the label, too.
Frank Chickens formed in 1982 and has grown somewhat over the decades with members from both Japan and the UK. Between 1984 and 2000, they released 6 albums and 7 singles. Not sure how high their profile ever got in their native Japan, but they have gone on tour worldwide so there is most likely a niche following.
My final line here is a musing. I wonder whether "We Are Ninja" had some sort of influence on flamboyant Kome Kome Club's（米米クラブ）creation of "Funk Fujiyama".
|My fixins for a stir-fry of chicken and bean sprouts|