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.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Eri Fukatsu -- Yokohama Joke (YOKOHAMAジョーク)

Just by chance, I was able to encounter this video of a few figures who have become even more famous in Japan recently. The footage comes from about 25 years ago with the first several seconds being that of then-broadcaster Yuriko Koike(小池百合子)who I used to see in passing while I was channel surfing. She was the first host of TV Tokyo's "World Business Satellite" nighttime business news program.

And then following that, there is a scene from a game show with this cute and slim co-host chattily handling hosting duties. Her name is Renho(蓮舫)and I may have caught a glimpse of her now and then, and considering from my recent viewings of her on TV, I just went "Wow! Was that really her 25 years ago?"

Now for those folks who have been keeping up with the politics in Japan, Koike is now the first female governor of Tokyo (as well as a former Minister of Defense and Minister of the Environment) while Renho Murata has just become the new leader of the Democratic Party, the official Opposition Party against the ruling Liberal Democratic Party led by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Considering that both Koike started her stint at "World Business Satellite" and that Renho began her career as a Clarion Girl in 1988, I decided to see if I could find someone who also made his or her singing debut in that particular year. Well, there were of course a number of young folks who climbed onto the stage and into the spotlight then but the one name that caught my eye was Eri Fukatsu(深津絵里)who is now a well-regarded award-winning actress.

She not only debuted as an actress in 1988 but she also started her short career as an aidoru with the release of her first single "Yokohama Joke" in October. A fairly loud song about a young lady venting about the guy she likes being with another lass, it does sound very 80s with those crashing metallic synths and drums. Looking at the video and the 15-year-old Fukatsu, though, I just kinda wondered whether she was musing "Ahhh....I guess I gotta pay my dues first, don't I?"

"Yokohama Joke" was written by Ayuko Ishikawa(石川あゆ子)and composed by Taro Kamon鹿紋太郎...not too sure about the pronunciation of that last name), and it later showed up as a track on her debut album "Applause"(アプローズ)which was released in February 1990. Strangely enough, Fukatsu also "debuted" again on the very same day as the release of "Yokohama Joke" under the name of Rie Takahara(高原里絵)with "Marionette Blue"(マリオネット・ブルー).

The above is the trailer for a recent Fukatsu flick "Kishibe no Tabi"(岸辺の旅...Journey to the Shore)which came out in 2015.

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