Yappari ne! Soudaro ne!
Shindoi ne... Miren da ne...
Aw geez, just these lines alone got me hooked on to Kiyoshi Hikawa's (氷川きよし)"Oi Okkake Otojiro".
I managed to find the popular enka singer's 2nd single when listening to "Hakone Hachiri no Hanjiro" (箱根八里の半次郎). Despite looking a little awkward back in 2001 and that horrendous coconut hair not doing him any favours (it's like a redux of Mae-Kiyo's glaring 80's perm), I must say that "Oi Okkake Otojiro" caught my attention through Hideo Mizumori's (水森英夫) score. As Mom had said when I played this song, it is loud. Besides the rousing strings, shamisen and blaring shakuhachi that his debut had, now there's even the taiko to spice things up. And not to forget Hikawa's bullhorn-like delivery that makes this tune more boisterous than it already is. Providing the lyrics for "Oi Okkake Otojiro" was Yurio Matsui (松井由利夫), and like its predecessor it seems to be about another ronin getting tired of his nomadic lifestyle.
Released on 21st February 2001, "Oi Okkake Otojiro" was very well-received, managing to get as high as 8th on the Oricon weeklies before settling at 50th by the end of the year. It became a certified Platinum record too, and allowed Hikawa to bag the "Gold Award" at the 43rd Japan Record Awards, as well as the "Cable Music Excellence Award" (I think that's how it's translated) at the 34th Japan Cable Awards. And finally, he sung it once during the 52nd Kohaku. Y'know, with it being that popular, I'm surprised that it's not sung often on TV nowadays. Too bad, I actually like it more than "Hakone Hachiro no Hanjiro".
Anyway, to round things up here's Fuyumi Sakamoto (坂本冬美), Junko Ishihara (石原詢子) and Yuri Harada (原田悠里) giving their rendition of "Oi Okkake Otojiro" on an old episode of "Nippon no Uta".