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.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Hiroshi Itsuki -- Matteiru Onna (待っている女)

I heard of this song without knowing the title or the original singer for years and years. But I had no idea that "Matteiru Onna" (The Waiting Woman) was actually a Hiroshi Itsuki(五木ひろし)single.Within the kayo kyoku world, the beaming Itsuki is quite the Renaissance Man with his dexterity in musical instruments and genres, but little did I know that he had already tackled this rocking tune with Mood Kayo lyrics.

Released in May 1972 as Itsuki's 14th single (according to his discography on his website), I had thought that "Matteiru Onna" was something that Kenji Sawada(沢田研二)or Hideki Saijo(西城秀樹)sang originally. My assumption that the early years for Itsuki were all about the enka and Mood Kayo before he decided to stretch his wings out some more. Written by Yoko Yamaguchi(山口洋子), the lyrics are about a woman pining for a lost lover somewhere in the dark streets of the city...something typically Mood Kayo. But Takuya Fujimoto's(藤本卓也)music puts a near-disco jolt into the usual Akasaka proceedings. I can even envision a re-arrangement with Blondie music for this one.

"Matteiru Onna" peaked at No. 6 on Oricon, and Itsuki performed it at the 1972 Kohaku Utagassen, his 2nd appearance on the New Year's Eve special just a year after his debut of the more Mood Kayo "Yokohama Tasogare"(よこはま・たそがれ). According to J-Wiki, the singer is currently in 3rd place after Saburo Kitajima(北島三郎)and Shinichi Mori(森進一)for the most number of appearances on the Kohaku.

Of course, the monomane artists couldn't let this one go.


  1. Hi J-Canuck.

    "Matteiru Onna" isn't something I'd hear from Itsuki, and I can imagine Hideki Saijo tackling this. But it is a palate cleanser since most songs that I listen to (from him) are very enka or Mood Kayo. Nice to know that his songs have variation.

    Yup, Korokke has indeed done an Itsuki-matteiru-onna impression, but I don't see it as often as "Chigiri". Still, it's pretty funny.

    1. Hi, Noelle.

      Yes, it was quite the revelation to me as well. Makes me wonder what other surprises there are in his discography.


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