Credits

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, December 4, 2016

Ritsuko Kazami -- Aventurier (アヴァンチュリエ)


Well, I ought to be turning in at around this time....just past midnight. However, my wanderings around YouTube has once again unearthed another one of those mystery singers that probably not many Japanese let alone folks outside of the nation remember.


Ritsuko Kazami(風見律子), according to J-Wiki, was an actress and singer who was active just in the 1980s with the latter profession starting only from 1985. However, I was immediately drawn to her 3rd of 4 singles, "Aventurier" which also happened to be the title of her 2nd album, both being released at the same time in August 1986.

I guess I am also truly a sucker for those female singers who dabbled in that certain segment of City Pop in the late 1980s with those classy strings and champagne synths. If I were to give examples of those singers, they would be folks like Ruiko Kurahashi(倉橋ルイ子), Junko Ohashi(大橋純子)and the late Kaoru Sudo(須藤薫)to a certain extent. The songs just immediately created that image of those sophisticated ladies painting the town red in Ginza or Akasaka or Aoyama in the capital.


And yet, there was also that air of overseas exoticism as well in the music, and that was indeed the case with Kazami's "Aventurier"; the title obviously intimates that. Written by Keiko Aso(麻生圭子)and composed by Etsuko Yamakawa(山川恵津子), there was that sweeping sense of intrigue on the French Riviera involving beautiful if flawed people, a lot of money and the threat of impending violence. Perhaps a bit florid on my part but there it is. I think overall I get that impression of Henry Mancini, especially with one of his classic creations, "Charade".

What tops it all off is Kazami's slightly distant delivery. There is a hint of ennui in there although at points in the song, those high notes almost threaten to dissipate her vocals. Maybe it's also mystery, which would make sense since past 1989, there doesn't seem to be any record of her professionally.

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